Latest reviews by Brenda Morris

(2021)
"Virtual Oakland Marathon "
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management

So much effort and motivation during the virtual running experience! A fun social media presence and email communications.

The long sleeve shirt I received is Under Armor and dryfit materials with thumbholes! As for the medal, high quality with a unique design made specific for Oakland's unique area. I feel a little funny about virtual medals, but it is pretty.

The 2020 Oakland Marathon was my first postponed race of 2020. Even in 2020, the Oakland Marathon and Running Festial did a great job mailing out packets to runners and still making it a memorable event.

I highly recommend the Oakland Marathon and all race distances. I look forward to hopefully running the race in person in the future, as the area looks like a great place for adventures.

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(2020)
"Hospital Hill virtual "
Overall
Race Management
SWAG
Virtual Support

I registered for this race after it went virtual. There was plenty of information on their Facebook page. They had challenges and a group page. I enjoyed the emails and updates on social media. I love the soft race shirt and medal. I have to admit, I feel funny about virtual medals, but it is pretty.

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(2019)
"New Jersey State Triathlon "
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management

A great venue for a weekend of Triathlons. The race went above and beyond to make this event happen in very tough conditions. The heat was a challenge for athletes, but also for the amazing volunteers and staff who work endlessly to make sure everyone is safe. Packet pickup was a little confusing but went well. The T shirts were dark and it was too warm to wear it post run, but seems like good quality. The only thing is, if your racing both days for the double down, you get the same exact shirt and medals? Instead of 2, it would be nice for something different. The bike had no water/aid stations, and in the heat it would have been nice, as my water was hot from sitting on the bike for a few hours. I was in the last wave to swim, so I had almost an hour wait and you had to exit transition by 7:15am. Otherwise, at the end there was water, honey stinger, NUUN, and cold face cloths, which was amazing by that time the heat was intense.
The course scenery was ok, the bike ride was residential on the bike path around the park. Not really a course I would have enjoyed twice, but I'm just not a loop person, I prefer out and back or loop. The Olympic was cut short to just 1 loop due to the heat, which was a great call from the RD.
There was plenty of parking at the park, and attendants to guide everyone.
Race Management was wonderful with their own app, facebook, and twitter for race information.

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(2019)
"The Most Beautiful Road Marathon in the U.S. ; Big Sur International Marathon"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management

My 3rd time running Big Sur Marathon, and its always as sweet as the last time. I have to pinch myself at the beautiful views! It's hard to explain and pictures just don't do justice, you have to experience this one for yourself. Every runner should put this one on their list. What's wonderful is there's so many distances and relay to choose from.
I arrived Thursday and participated in the Fleet Feet Pub Run, which was so much fun. I met up with other runners and we tried the new GU products, had a nice run and walked over to the Brewery where we enjoyed a free drink of choice, pizza and ice cream. It was great to socialize with other enthusiastic runners.
Friday I went to the Expo which is always a great time. I also went to the Run Tech Happy Hour and met up with more people, and learned about some new running apps. Bib and T-shirt pickup was quick and easy. I walk over, but there's plenty of parking on the street and in lots.
Saturday I participated in the Shake Out Run, so much fun. Afterwards, oatmeal and coffee at Fleet Feet again. I returned to the Expo to attend the 1:00 & 2:00 Seminars, both amazing and inspirational. There's so much fun all weekend long, plus gorgeous views and other activities to do with family and friends.

Sunday Funday, I was up at 2:30 to get the 3:00am bus to the start line. All went smoothly, the start was nice and comfortable, previous years much colder. You wait about 1.5 hours to start, but its fun. There's coffee, bagels, fruit, and plenty of porta johns. Although, it was unorganized and it took 40 minutes.

The course: OH My God! SO many photos! LOL Every time I say, I won't take so many photos, but its such a beautiful and fun run. Weather was perfect for me. In the 40's-50's without sun.

There are 11 aid stations on the course. All stations feature Gatorade Endurance first, then water. Refill stations for those with their own bottles are located at the end of every other station. Fruit at all stations starting at mile 10.4. GU located at the stations near mile 12 and near mile 18. There was bins for energy gel packets and cups at each station. There was portable toilets located at each aid station. Each station also had medical personnel with minor first aid supplies.

Post PARTY! I went right to the Hoka tent for the Normatec boots! Whenever I see them, I wait in line. If you haven't tried them yet, you should. Amazing! Then off to the Minestrone Soup. I didn't eat anything in the box of food they gave me, the soup was perfect. I also didn't have any free post beer, I went into Starbucks for a nice hot tea and changed my clothes and on to the bus. I had plans for post cookout with friends.
I can't say enough about this wonderful event!
If I had to find a negative thing, it would be to have the porto johns more organized, with ropes or volunteers to have individual lines vs. the chaotic long lines that didn't make sense. Also, I was a little disappointed in the shirt quality/color/style and heard a bunch of other runners say that, but you can never please everyone. I think it's compared to the previous Asics quality.

I HIGHLY recommend this race to everyone! Bring the family, friends or go solo and meet new friends... There's so much so see and do in Monterey, Carmel, Big Sur.

#BSIMBR #BibChat #BibRavePro #BSIM #marathon

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(2019)
"Love Run Philly Half Marathon"
Overall
T-Shirts/SWAG
Aid Stations
Course Scenery
Expo Quality
Elevation Difficulty
Parking/Access
Race Management

One of the best Half Marathons I've run! Such an awesome weekend!
Flat and Fast! The weather was perfect, started to rain just as I was about to finish.

I rented a van and a condo for a ladies weekend :) I had 7 female friends join me for a road trip from Massachusetts to Philly. We left 6am Saturday morning and arrived at 12:00, just in time for Packet Pickup and Lunch. The Expo was fun and lots of great vendors, and quick and easy packet pick up.
The soft baseball style shirt is sweet, and love the mug!
Pre Race: Lots of porto johns, parking, and easy corral system.
Running towards City Hall was cool, I"ve only seen photos. Ben Franklin Boulevard has so much history and beautiful early in the morning.
The course was well supported, lots of volunteers and spectators in high spirits.
Rain at the finish line, but we still had an epic time! Free beer ( Thanks to Coney Island Brewery), pretzels, goodie bag, and more. Of course we ran the stairs and took photos with our medals and Rocky :)
All of us want to return next year, so much fun... So many great restaurants, pubs, sightseeing and more to do...

Put this one on your list! Such a fun location and very well organized.

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