The Journey with Mental Preparedness: When a Finish is a Win

If anyone had asked me 5 years ago if I ever wanted to run a marathon, I would have laughed in their face. I would have made some joke about “only running if someone was chasing me” and we would have chuckled and that would have been the end of it….for a while.

Later, I would have felt sad because I believed I COULDN’T run a marathon. I believed my weight, my speed and my lack of athleticism would hold me back from ever doing something that huge. I am built more like a linebacker than a runner. My legs are thick, my shoulders broad, my stomach is more like a pony keg than a six-pack.

By 2011, when I became a runner, the answer was the same. Sure, I could bust out a 35 minute 5K. I could struggle through a half marathon and not feel like I was dying the next day, but I was no marathon runner. Leave that to the lean and the fast. Even though I had lost a significant amount of weight, I was still too big, too slow.

The first two years of my running life consisted of losing weight, training and signing up for races. As I would get fitter, I would get faster. My 5K time went from 40+ minutes to a solid 32. Between June of 2011 and August of 2012 I shaved almost 10 minutes from my 10K time. My first half marathon was barely under 3 hours. Four months later I ran a half marathon almost 20 minutes faster. I wanted this to continue. I wanted every race to be a personal record. And as I ran more races, the idea of a marathon didn’t […]

By |April 30th, 2015|Categories: Latest News||2 Comments

A Runner’s Experience Of The San Francisco Marathon

For me, marathons generally fall into one of two categories: a race that I remember because of the actual footrace, itself, the ground that I covered over the course of 26.2 miles, or a race that I remember because of the actual experience, something that includes the actual race distance (of course) but also all the other “little things” that go into making a race and its weekend unique.

The San Francisco Marathon, my friends, has earned a special place in my heart because of the sheer experience and magnitude of it all.

I first ran TSFM in 2010, and had flown in from Chicago for a quick weekend trip—literally only coming to SF to run the race—and I had no goals or expectations. I had never been to SF before (or California, for the matter), and I thought that run-seeing my way through the city by the bay, on a perfect Sunday morning in late July, would be the best and fastest way to explore all the city had to offer.

It didn’t disappoint. I was impressed with the experience of running past SF’s icons over the course of my 26.2 mile adventure, including:

The quiet of the Embarcadero in the early, predawn miles;
The hills of Fort Mason before making our way to the breathtaking views (obscured that morning by some equally beautiful late July fog) offered by the one and only Golden Gate Bridge;
The US’s largest urban park (bigger than Central Park in NYC), the esteemed Golden Gate Park;
The enormous downhills on Haight Street and the hippies and counterculture vibe that only the Haight can bring;
The Mission District;
AT&T Park, where you know you’re so close to the finish line but still have some work to do;
Running […]

By |April 3rd, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on A Runner’s Experience Of The San Francisco Marathon

RunKeeper and The San Francisco Marathon Partner to Help You Train

Leading fitness-tracking app, RunKeeper, is now offering its Elite members official full marathon and half marathon training plans from The San Francisco Marathon’s RUN365 training program. Available on iPhone and Android, these custom-built 18-, 12- and 8-week training plans deliver a daily training schedule to help novice or intermediate runners train for either distance, or help advanced runners tune up for either race, focusing on pace, distance and strength.

U.S. marathon participation is swiftly growing year over year, according to Running USA, with a record 540,000 finishers logged in 2013, up 25 percent since 2005. With more and more runners training for marathon distances each year, RunKeeper is continually expanding on its core GPS tracking features, which empower runners to access statistics on their run—such as pace, distance, time, and calories-burned. Beyond being able to track activity, set goals, get motivation to workout, and track runner partner’s workouts, RunKeeper’s more than 40 million worldwide users can now access race training plans, including the official training plan of The San Francisco Marathon, which support runners during marathon training.

The San Francisco Marathon’s RUN365 official training plans outline daily activity goals, offering runners details on pace, distance, intensity and time. Plans also include guidance on rest, recovery and cross training, and offer customized workout plans for intermediate verses advanced runners.

The RUN365 training program from The San Francisco Marathon has been active in the Bay Area for more than ten years, pairing trainees with RRCA and USATF certified coaches in-person three days a week on a mix of long runs, paced runs, track workouts and more. Runners are supported with one-on-one coaching, nutrition and hydration guidance, and the camaraderie of their fellow trainees. RUN365 is thrilled to be partnering […]

By |March 31st, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on RunKeeper and The San Francisco Marathon Partner to Help You Train

GPS Watches: My How Far We’ve Come

If you aren’t already running with a GPS device, chances are that if you look around at your next race or group run, most runners will be wearing a GPS watch or carrying a GPS-enabled smart phone. Today, GPS technology is rapidly improving and there are a number of watches, wearable devices and smartphone apps, which empower you with real-time data about your running—but, it’s worth noting that this technology has come a long way over the last decade. It wasn’t long ago that the accuracy and accessibility of GPS data was a far cry from where it is today—and GPS devices available to runners were similarly clunky. Today we get to enjoy feature-rich devices, like the Fitbit Surge, that integrate a heart rate monitor, GPS activity tracker and more – all while looking good on your wrist.

In fact, it wasn’t so long ago that runners ran without GPS. Although the US began development of the Global Positioning System in the 1970’s, the first running watch with a GPS receiver did not hit the markets until 2003. Prior to then, we used stopwatches to keep time but distances were generally just estimated from a map, or if you were an experienced runner, you might guess at your pace. In 1984, Timex came out with an LCD watch targeting runners, and the Timex Ironman series dominated runners’ wrists for the next couple of decades.

When Garmin released the first few GPS watches, they were bulky and anyone brave enough to wear one received a lot of smirks and oddball comments as fellow runners wondered why someone would use such a funny-looking watch.  I used a Garmin 201, which took up much of my forearm and created an odd feeling of weight […]

By |March 22nd, 2015|Categories: Ambassadors||Comments Off on GPS Watches: My How Far We’ve Come

Announcing 2015 San Francisco Marathon Ambassadors

We are thrilled to announce our official 2015 San Francisco Marathon Ambassadors. It was very difficult to choose amidst a sea of impressive applications, and we’d like to thank all of our ambassador applicants for their support of our races! It’s been a long, grueling process, but we’ve narrowed the amazing applicant pool down to 25 phenomenal athletes. These runners will inspire, educate, and support you for the race season as we prepare together for The 2015 San Francisco Marathon.

Here are your talented 2015 San Francisco Marathon Ambassadors:

Bonnie Wilson, Portland, OR

Chas Melichar, Las Vegas, NV

Chris Malenab, Sacramento, CA

Erin Mink Garvey, San Jose, CA

Francesco Presutti, NewYork, NY

Heather Stewart, Santa Clarita, CA

Jackelyn Valladares, Los Angeles, CA

James Chong, Los Angeles, CA

Jamie Wisto, San Francisco, CA

Jessica Mumme, Eugene, OR

Jody Stoops, Yorba Linda, CA

Keith Schlottman, Tucson, AZ

Laura Moir, Oakland, CA

May Wu, Los Angeles, CA

Meg Gudgeirsson, Santa Cruz, CA

Michelle Loyola, Oxnard, CA

Myrna Gallegos, Los Angeles, CA

Paulette Ference, San Jose, CA

Scott Benbow, San Francisco, CA

Shannon Morrison, Upper Arlington, OH

Stan Tsu, Cupertino, CA

Stephanie Davies, Belmont, CA

Tricia Poblete, South Sna Francisco, CA

Vanessa Slavich, San Francisco, CA

Wes Lashley, Seattle, WA


Stay tuned for more news and updates from our Ambassador Team! Congratulations to all of you!

By |March 2nd, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on Announcing 2015 San Francisco Marathon Ambassadors

Official San Francisco Marathon Training Gear

We’ve kicked off our 26-week training season and that means it’s time to wear official training gear as you build strength and stamina up to race day.

That’s why we just launched two new “In Training” designs in our Official Merchandise Store.

These long sleeve technical running shirts is a signature design – lightweight and built for performance. They’re moisture wicking and breathable, with chafe-resistant flat seams and an extra long back length – the perfect piece to outfit your training.




By |February 26th, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on Official San Francisco Marathon Training Gear

Run365 Training Program 2015 Spring Kickoff

On February 7th, RUN365 kicked off the official 26-week San Francisco Marathon Training Program with a 5K run along Chrissy Field, set against the backdrop of the Golden Gate Bridge. The Run365 series of training programs help runners train for regional races, primarily The San Francisco Marathon and Half Marathons on July 26th, 2015.
With seven regional training hubs, Run365 training runs take trainees on roads and trails along the most beautiful section of the Bay Area. USATF and RRCA certified coaches will be there to map routes, advise on fitness and health while distance running and help trainees reach training, racing, and personal health goals. All Programs are available for both road and trail. Training can support novice or experienced runners, and include 26-week, 18-week, 12-week and 8-week programs to fit your training needs.
Click here – REGISTER TODAY for the program that fits your needs.
Click on this image below to view a video of the Run365 Spring Training Kickoff at the Presidio:

All Programs Feature:

San Francisco, Peninsula, East Bay, Pleasanton/Tri-Valley Area, and South Bay training locations
Detailed day-to-day training schedule
3 group workouts per week (1 group run, a coached track workout, and a coached and paced long run on the weekend)
RRCA and USATF Certified Coaches
Coach support on long runs, at the track, and via email
Seminars by experts on stretching, injury prevention, nutrition, footwear, foam rolling, strength training, and more
Team social events
Online facebook group for group discussions, finding running partners, planning meet up runs, organizing rideshares, sharing photos, complaining about your tired legs, etc.
Weekly e-newsletter with location specific weekly schedules, training tips, recipes, race news, etc.
Discounts at our location community partners

We can also help you train for:

Oakland Running Festival – Full and Half Marathon
San Luis Obispo Marathon – Full and Half Marathon
Big Sur International Marathon
Avenue of the Giants Marathon
Boston Marathon
Rock […]

By |February 22nd, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on Run365 Training Program 2015 Spring Kickoff

VIP Party Tickets Now Available

You can now treat yourself to elite runner perks on July 26th, 2015 before and after your race. Tickets are now available for The San Francisco Marathon VIP Race Day Party!


When: Sunday, July 26 4am-1pm
Where: Market Bar 1 Ferry Building, San Francisco CA., 94111

Tickets are $105 each and offer you nine hours of pampering and exclusive amenities – which means you’re taken care of before and after the race. You can expect perks such as: private back check, VIP-only bathrooms, massage, pre-race breakfast and post-race brunch. Full details HERE.

Pre-Race Breakfast Items Include: 

Seasonal Farmers’ Market Fruit
Organic Peanut Butter
Cream Cheese
House-Made Jam

Post-Race Brunch Items Include:

Breakfast Buffet

Seasonal Farmers’ Market Fruit
Scrambled Farm Eggs with Cherry Tomatoes and Jersey Ricotta
Breakfast Potatoes
House-Made Granola with St. Benoit Yogurt and Milk
Hobbs Bacon and Caggiano Maple Pecan Sausage
Acme Cinnamon Currant French Toast
Griddled Buttermilk Pancakes


Organic Mixed Green Salad with Banyuls Vinaigrette
Sweet Gem Caesar Salad
Grilled Chicken Salad
House-Roasted Turkey Club Sandwiches
Farmers’ Market Tomato, Avocado, and Lettuce Sandwiches
Braised Pork Sandwiches with Chipotle Aioli
Organic Hamburgers and Cheeseburgers

By |February 13th, 2015|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on VIP Party Tickets Now Available

My experience with the Pebble Smart Watch

by Lisa Wilson

Since the early 2000s, watches have slowly been falling out of favor. This conversation, in a scene from the movie Finding Sarah Marshall, is a case of art imitating life:
“How long you lived out here?
Man, I don’t know. I quit wearing a watch when I moved out here.
Wow, that’s so cool.
No, like my cell phone has a clock on it, so I don’t really need it.”

I’ve had similar conversations with friends, the gist being ‘who needs a watch, when I can check my phone.’ According to an industry expert, quoted on, “Wearing a watch was deemed not only unnecessary but uncomfortable for tasks such as typing on a keyboard.”  The article also stated that the only increase in watch sales was in high-end watches, worn simply as a status symbol.

With the Pebble, it makes sense to wear a watch again. It goes beyond the label of time-piece, and it’s so much more than just a status symbol. I love how my Pebble is both watch and personal assistant! I sync it to my iPhone, load some apps, and ‘Presto!’, it becomes a personal assistant! I love how it tells me the time, the weather, the date, controls my music, and alerts me to incoming texts and phone calls.
Here are a few things I can do with my Pebble –
1. Get ready at the Starting Line

2.  Sync with the weather so I’m prepared for anything. 

3. Download a new watch face just for fun. 

4. Track my Blood Alcohol Level after some celebratory beers! 

Pebble tracks my workout, without having to switch to a GPS watch, maps my journey, and even guides me back to my car. I can track sports action without begin stuck in front of […]

By |July 15th, 2014|Categories: Latest News||Comments Off on My experience with the Pebble Smart Watch

Help a Child Run for the First Time with World of Children Award

Imagine not being able to walk to the market, tie your shoelaces or jump out of bed. Imagine not being able to go to school because you couldn’t walk there by yourself, or you were afraid that people might hurt you because of the way you looked. These are just a few challenges that 93 million children with a disability face every day. That’s why this summer, we’re running The San Francisco Marathon to give children with a limb disability the ability to walk, run and achieve their dreams.
We’re running to support children like Alex and Maverick, two young boys from Ecuador who are congenital amputees, meaning they were born without one of their legs. For Alex and Maverick, not having two legs meant not being able to walk to school, run, or play with friends. It meant not being able to do simple, everyday tasks by themselves. It also meant not looking forward to a life of independence and opportunity as they continued to grow into adulthood.
Simply being fitted with a prosthetic limb would improve their lives dramatically, but unfortunately, their families could not afford expensive medical care.
Then one day everything changed for Alex and Maverick. Their families were connected to one of the programs we are funding this year — A Leg To Stand On (ALTSO) — who fitted them with prosthetic limbs and enrolled them in rehabilitation and follow-up procedures to ensure their treatment was effective.
Now, they’re not just walking, but running. They are pictured here finishing their very first 5k race in Ecuador to help raise awareness and funds for other people with disabilities.
Run with us on July 27 to give children like Alex and Maverick the chance to run […]

By |June 5th, 2014|Categories: Charity||Comments Off on Help a Child Run for the First Time with World of Children Award