The inaugural Sharks Fitness Faceoff benefitting the Sharks Foundation on June 30 was a blast! I had typical pre-race jitters in the parking lot, but once the event got started I was able to relax into a steady 8:30 pace. Like any first year event, the organizers got a few things wrong. Luckily, the goals outnumbered the penalties.
GOAL: Something for everyone. The event had an activity to suit every fitness level, including 50- and 22-mile bike rides, 5 and 10K runs, a kids run around the arena, and a health festival with booths touting everything from massages to sensible footwear.
GOAL: Street closures! I love running where cars usually drive, and it was pretty awesome to take over the streets of downtown San Jose. The loop course went by the San Jose Museum of Art, offered up some challenging overpass hills along the Guadalupe Parkway and Hedding Street, and then flattened out on The Alameda and neighborhood streets back to the arena.
PENALTY: The 10K course was short. I was expecting a regulation 10K that morning, so when someone started their kick with more than half a mile to go (according to my Garmin) I was incredibly confused. I picked my head up to confirm that we were closer to the end than I’d realized, and kicked it into a higher gear for a speedy finish of my own. My watch reported a 5.89-mile run, and I later confirmed the truncated distance using Google maps. Such a bummer!
PENALTY: Not enough liquid at the finish. The race organizers probably weren’t expecting such a large turn out, because they ran out of Gatorade and water at the finish line very quickly. Luckily, I wasn’t too thirsty and I had a stash of water in the car.
GOAL: Great race photos! There were only a couple of photographers peppered along the backstretches of the 10K course, but I managed to smile for all of them. (Looking good in race photos seems to be my M.O!)
Have you ever noticed a course was shorter than it claimed?