Have you ever started a race and wished you already knew what the course was like? Some runners “pre-run,” whereby they take time before the race to run sections of the course so they know what to expect on race day. Unfortunately, many of us simply don’t live close enough to the course or have the time to go out and do this.
At City to the Sea, we’ve got you covered! Over the next few months we’ll be providing mile-by-mile descriptions and tips from City to the Sea veterans. We’ll be sure to offer insights from both elite and recreational runners so that no matter what your goals are, you’ll be able to start the race with a better understanding of what’s up ahead.
The first section is two and a half miles long, and includes the run through Downtown San Luis Obispo and a portion of the run down South Higuera Street. For this section we reached out to last year’s men’s winner Brian Engleton to see what he had to say:
The race starts in the downtown San Luis Obispo core, with lots of spectators and pent-up energy. The first mile is a straight section right down the middle of Higuera Street. It’s slightly downhill and extremely fast, and there are a lot of folks that get caught up in the excitement and run that first mile way too fast.
My advice is to run the first few miles conservatively, paying close attention to your watch. It should feel relaxed and in control.
You’ll see the first of the aid stations around mile two on South Higuera and after that you’re running along long, sweeping blocks that move you toward the edge of town. Focus on getting there with plenty in the tank.
The race really begins once you pass Trader Joe’s.
-Brian Engleton, 2012 City to the Sea Half Marathon men’s winner