Friday, October 02, 2009

East Bay Training Day

So after the beating that I got the day before, I got up early to join the triathlon club for our East Bay Training Day at Tilden Park, Berkeley. I knew I was going to be okay. As sore and exhausted as I was on Saturday (the subject of my previous post) it was the heat that took me down. I knew that with some good food and a lot of liquids, not the beer kind, and a good night's sleep I was going to be okay.

The day at Tilden Park was awesome. I never train in the East Bay and part of that is because I don't have a car. Even if the Oakland Bay Bridge was open to foot traffic, it isn't, you would need a way to get to the trails after you cross over. When you head north on the Golden Gate Bridge from San Francisco, there's a trailhead waiting on the other side to take you into the Marin Headlands and eventually the Mt. Tamalpais area - in these parts we just say Mt. Tam. That will change however since I now have running friends in the East Bay who I can meet up with at the train stations who are more than willing to share their favorite trails.

We had a good turnout, it was warm but folks brought their water bottles. The run was 7.4 miles but a good number extended to 12, and some folks went up to 16. That's long for triathletes and with the heat and hills, it made for a long day for some of them. I should add that it's long for most people unless they were training for an ultra-marathon. Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised to realize that I was on the Dick Collin's Firetrails 50-Mile course, my race next weekend. We were around the 26-mile turnaround and it got me more psyched for the race. I opted for the 7.4-mile option. As it was I was already bringing up the rear and I couldn't wait to get back for the promised bbq. Some brought their wetsuits for a swim at the lake, it was probably warm enough without them.

I hope you all have a great weekend. My thoughts this past week have been on the Philippines. They have had one big hurricane and another one hitting right now. I have been thinking about my family, relatives, friends and fellow runners who I have met through blogs and Facebook. The streets are flooded and there is lots of devastation. There is a running boom there right now and I just know that once the rain stops, the waters recede, that there will be runs conducted to raise money for the victims. My prayers go out to them.

We got maps and everything. I was no help, I had no idea where I was but it was a refreshing feeling. The park was as big as the world since I didn't know where I was, that was until I recognized I was on the Firetrails 50 race course. Then my next thought was, "all these years and I didn't know I was running trails that was part of Berkeley". What a shame, soon to be rectified...hopefully.

And we are off!

Ran into East Bay local Brian Wyatt. He had his headlamp on which probably meant it was an early and long run. It was going on 10AM by time we met up with him.

Ran into another running local yokel, Jeff Lang. Did I mention it was also warm in the East Bay? I had sweat through my shirt and into my shorts and here's Jeff in full track pants and a beanie. You know he's used to the heat, he only has sweat stains on his chest. I'll see him at Firetrails too.

Even the club dog thought it was hot. This is she after the run.

Picnic time, so what if there's still people out.

Swim Director, Kathryn Bailey, getting the grill going while member Jeff Wong looks on.

Much, much cooler in the shade.

Our last runner in, Gary, he came in after most folks have left and most of the food is gone. We almost sent out a search party for him, ok well not really but some of us waited until he came in.


  1. Yes, our hills are pretty sweet! Glad you got to experience them while not actually competing. I'm volunteering at a Golden Hills Marathon aid station (Fern Dell) but maybe I'll see you at the finish next week. ;)

  2. I miss the East Bay! Looks like you got a bit more heat training. Good luck next week!

  3. Always good to wait for tail end charlie!

  4. rick, the spirit of "bayanihan" is very alive here most especially among the members of the running community. we just finished the 5th octoberun 16K this morning and many runners donated cash (one peso per kilometer they run) and goods (food & clothing) in one of the booths provided by my friend, jonel aka bugobugo. and these donations will be given directly to the runners affected by the typhoon. thanks! good luck on your next race.

  5. Now thats a nice training day... friends. trails, good food and a dog that knows how to keep cool :-) ahhh fun times!

  6. Anonymous6:31 AM

    Seems you guys had so much fun with the heat...

    TKO250 is taking the lead :)

  7. Hey Rick! I hope the weather there would not be too hot for your next race. Here, with the change of season our mornings are much colder for comfort, 9 degrees Celsius this morning and it's been raining on and off for the last few days.

    I too was glued to our TV watching the news of the devastation in our home country brought by typhoon Ondoy. I think the running community in the Philippines did a commendable job at being in the front and center of the rescue and relief efforts. So proud of everybody that contributed to the Bayanihan effort to alleviate the sufferings of the typhoon victims.

    Now that I completed my first marathon at turtle pace as expected, gotta work on improving my speed :)(is it even possible at my age?). Thanks for all the advise and inspirational stories from your blog,and the others of course, I used them when physically I was too much in pain at the last few ks of the race.

  8. Rick, you have such a great running scene out there with the runners and triathlon groups. It is really cool to see all the camaraderie amongst all the runners. Great stuff!

    Also, my thoughts and prayers go out to your family, friends, and all the residents of the Philippines. I will pray for the best.

  9. I was wondering how you get out to to the trails! I'm in the same boat, but I've been riding my bike to trails. I came across Let's hope for no more major seismic events anywhere for awhile.

  10. I told a friend recently that if I lived in the U.S., I would surely be a trail runner because of all the awesome stories and photos you put up on your blog. Good luck in your next race!

    This weekend, we'll be having The Rescue Run for victims of Typhoon Ondoy (ketsana). Just another way for runners to help those who were devastated by the floods.