The Dipsea was the first race that got me hooked on running. In 1998 at 14 years old, I even ran the Double Dipsea.
Since then, I have always wanted to return to my roots, but due to the Dipsea’s small field and tough selection process, I would get denied each time. Finally, this year my application was accepted and the challenge was set.
The Dipsea is the second oldest race to the Boston marathon and its unique handicapped wave starts make it a special challenge for 1500 runners each year. There are steep climbs, steep descents, shortcuts, and stairs.. stairs.. stairs as you try to pass tons of runners to get to from Mill Valley to Stinson Beach. This year was the 105th running of the Dipsea and the conditions were perfect- cold, overcast, and even rain on top of Cardiac Hill. I started in the second to last wave with only a 1 minute handicap. It can be quite a challenge starting in the back because you have to pass all of the waves of people starting before you as fast and safely as possible throughout the entire race. Because of the technical course and the 2000 ft. elevation climb, my strategy was to run by heart rate and not by pace. By establishing a set HR limit, I was able to prevent blowing up too soon at the Dipsea stairs and the initial climb. I finished with a time of 1:03 which was fast enough to be in the top 750 overall and guarantees me a spot in next year’s race as an invitational runner, and hopefully for years to come as long as I can continue to place in the top 450. So now it’s on to chase the next goal – the coveted black shirts given to the top 35 runners each year…a dream I’ve had for a long time.
Sunday June 14th, 2015
Overall place: 638
Race time: 1:29:33
Actual time: 1:03:32
28th Runner in Group Z
No run would be complete without a post race burger from our favorite spot, Pearl’s!!! It was probably one of the best.