02 December 2014

Across a foggy Gate: Elevation station

When I lived in the Bay Area, I made almost weekly forays to the Headlands to run the trails and used them extensively in my training for my first go-round at Marathon des Sables. So getting back to these known paths is reassuring except for one minor thing:

I have been living in coastal North Carolina since 2005. You may recall a post from earlier this summer, where I tracked the WRRC "hill" loop workout. Here's the elevation profile from that post: 

The max elevation is just over 50 ft....
I don't know the formula for overall elevation gain, and uh, 

not really sure that there is, in fact, an overall gain on this route. 
Here's the elevation profile for the TNF Endurance Challenge race:

Yes, that reads 906 ft for max elevation...I especially like that the minimum elevation is higher than my max elevation here in NC, 'cause, you know, starting at sea level and all. I'm going to comfort myself with the knowledge that the overall elevation gain is less than it was during my Yellowstone-Teton 50-miler from September, by around 85ft. And I'm going to ignore the 5-star difficulty rating 'cause, hey, I've run it before, right? Ha. At least I'll be distracted by all the scenery.  Here's the course map:

The big loop is exactly the loop I used to run for training. 
The path on the far right of the course is basically one big incline, 
which I used to run up, but which, gratefully, 
we are descending at the end. 
Golden Gate Bridge is in the bottom right corner, 
San Francisco is just below it. 
I'm truly elated to be running this race. I'm not running for time or to place, I am running to simply do it, to get back to those hills that were once a home for my feet and my heart. To prove that it's possible to do that thing that "they" say you'll never do again. 


  1. Beans, anytime I go to San Francisco, I take a long walk or “shudder” run up and then “whew” down some of the hills near my hotel. Love you and "keep on running”. (to almost quote Ellen)

    1. Steps of Rome is closed!!! :( No more singing waiters......