- 3 miles/5K, 6 miles/10K, 13.1/Half Marathon
- Road Race
Initially, I was raring to go for the half but suffering some foot pain after running Nike SF just a month prior (and putting off the decision as long as possible), I finally chose to downgrade to the 5K at the expo, the day before the race. Truth be told, I was an ambassador for the Berkeley Half in 2015 so even though the 5K was sold out, I was able to switch no problem.
Getting to the starting line was easy enough with a quick BART ride and short walk, the 5K began at 9:15am (yay!) and the half at 8am, so I was able to cheer in the elites with the rest of the crowd as we waited for our start. One of the great things about the Bay Area is our weather and November sees some of the best weather there is and by 9am, it was bright, sunny, blue skies, 70 degrees and steadily warming up.
The 5K begins by the local high school and library, and traverses a semi-residential area from mile 1-1.5 before a slight climb past then through the CAL campus. While the scenery the first half of the race isn't that thrilling (houses and businesses), it's a 5K so not long to reach the approach toward the campus then it's all the beauty of peaceful, fall-tree-lined CAL Berkeley.
The 5K has its own finish line on the campus and mile 2-3 is a nice steady, wide open downhill. 3.1 finishes with a fabulous medal and some great recovery snacks and a quick walk to the post-race festival at the 10K/half finish line at Civic Center park just a few blocks away. (I did not attend the post-race fest as my foot was hurting so I limped to BART and whimpered on home for some RICE time.)
Great course through a great city, the 5K is very kid and walker friendly and I just love running through that campus! After the hustle and bustle of the street, the serene beauty of the CAL campus is very motivating and helped me pick up the pace for the last kick to finish.
Of course I have a goal with the Berkeley Half now- to get that 13.1 done! Although I loved the race so much that I want to do the 10K as well as the half so we shall see what 2016 brings... no matter the distance, I WILL BE BACK!!!