Wednesday, May 20, 2009


So Sunday morning I was out the door by 7AM to return the car rental that I used for Jon's wedding and I had forgotten it was Bay to Breakers Sunday. I was wondering for a minute why there were about 50 or so people dressed as pink flamingos on my street corner. They had pink skirts with the head dress complete with a black beaks. The women had bikini tops and the men were shirtless. It was warm. These were followed by 20 or so folks who looked like Waldo from Where's Waldo? and a handful of Gilligan's Island characters.

Bay to Breakers is an annual footrace here in San Francisco known for it's costumed runners, nude runners, centipedes (13 runners running connected), floats and public drunkenness. Kegs on wagons is a common site and some of the floats are moving bars. Supposedly they were cracking down on that this year and I wonder how successful that was? It's really more of a parade. The two times I've participated I pretty much walked the 7.46 miles / 12 kilometer course. There is a real race in all of this, an elite event with prize money and everything but they start first and are long gone while the party is just getting started. Here is a fact that I just found out, the race is the official site of the World Centipede Running Championships. Wild huh, some of those centipedes are crazy fast too. Some are made up of sub-6 milers running amok in the streets of San Francisco in costume.

Here is a link to SFGate's pictures from this years race. The hot pink Gorilla who started with the elites is a 2:18 marathoner. It was a hot day though, I'm sure he wasn't anywhere near his usual pace:) It must have gotten quite hot in that gorilla suit.

I don't do the B2B anymore. Good beers, no bathrooms. However when I saw all the costumed participants a part of me wanted to go. "When did you get to be so serious?", a voice echoed in my head. My friend John picked me up a little after 8AM and by 8:30 we were carpooling with friends, Dave and Tracey Ewart, for a short run on Mt. Tam. Since it was a short run, about 11-miles, and it was a warm day I layered up to get some heat training in. I had a skin tight long sleeve dri-fit as a base layer, a short sleeve shirt over that and a shell over everything. I wore compression shorts too but I was testing those for chafing prevention not really to add more heat. I'm afraid I killed a bunch of my swimmers that day. The first 45 minutes was quite hard. It felt like the Philippines in Spring inside that shell, like Wisconsin in the Summer. After the initial shock my body adjusted, thankfully, and I was great after that. I was even able to run with the hood up for the rest of the run. Definitely got some strange looks from the other runners and hikers. Sa'll right, I'm pretty sure none of then are running San Diego 100 in June. The sauna heat training is working. I was fine out there, slower but comfortable. On a long downhill complete with roots, rocks and logs, I gunned it smiling like the Joker. At the end of that burst I thought I was going to pass out but I cooled off quickly while John and I waited for the Ewarts.

After the run was over we fought the crowds at Stinson Beach for a parking spot. We almost left for another beach but luckily we scored. A couple of hours laying about shirtless in the sand didn't help my farmer's tan much but it felt good, so did the burger, the beer and the ice cream sandwich. Thank God for such pleasures that also cost so little. I left Stinson no longer wishing I had joined the debaucherous celebrations at B2B.

Dave and Tracey Ewart, John Branderhorst.

"But I don't wanna heat train anymore! Waaah. I can't keep up with those guys!"

Tracey on the Dipsea Trail.

Here come the runners, hide your food and beer.

A hot summer beach day in Stinson.

For the photoset click here.


  1. Great post of a really good weekend. Enjoying all aspects of life. Friend getting married, running with friends and of course eating!!!

  2. Wahhhh on the heat training -lol great pics !

    and awesome weekend!

  3. Man, taht picture of you layered up and friends nacked (yum!) - priceless! I remember 2 years gao my friend here Greg Pressler trained for Portland. Then kind of our "heat season" came in first wave (what's coming this weekend, by the way, and I am away) - and I am roasted in a tank top. Who do I see but Greg wearing all black, tights and 3 LS shirts and a hat. Made me appreciate to never dream about BW again! Well, that until I move to TX, of course:) Nah, too much road. I can't wait to hear what you do at SD! Knowing the course gives me advantage of waving in my predictions:)

  4. People must be thinking, is that guy crazy or what, when they saw you wearing layers on that hot sunny day. Now I'm really learning a lot from you, and thank God for finding your blog. Thanks for the comment, I need sound advise from people who know their stuff. We also have hot weather here, 27 Celsius, gorgeous day for my 6k run. The day was just so beautiful I had to look up the blue sky and thank Him for everything.

  5. Hey, let's run B2B next year!!!

  6. nice post and pictures. yes, i am here and i am running the LA Marathon on Memorial Day with my son & daughter. please send me your plans about your shirts to be donated at my e-mail address at thanks for your support!

  7. Sounds like a fun day. A run and then hanging out at the beach. It does not get much better than that.

    I guess in 1 way I am kinda glad I had to bail on the SD 100. I would have been screwed in the heat training department.

    I am crewing at Badwater this year. That will be a hot experience coming straight from Alaska.

  8. Dude you are way nuts LOL. Looks like a nice weekend. Ahhhhh so nice and sunny.