Tuesday, March 31, 2009

LAMarathonstore.com is now open!

Get your official LA Marathon gear now at LAMarathonstore.com. Check out our store for the latest in LA Marathon shirts, outerwear, headwear and accessories. You can even pre-order an LA Marathon bib tee. On race day, you can wear your bib without having to pin it to your shirt. Your bib number and name will be printed directly on your shirt! Orders can be picked up at the Run/Ex/09 Expo on May 23rd and 24th. We will be adding new items to the store in the coming weeks so be sure to check back often.


Friday, March 27, 2009

Emerald Nuts - Emerald Final Five

From Mile 21.2 and beyond, the Emerald Nuts Final Five will power your journey to the finish line. At each station, cheer squads, heart-pumping music, and nutritious snacks will propel you towards your ultimate goal with a boost of energy your body and spirit needs to break through the wall!


CA Hospital Medical Center returns as Official Medical Provider

For the second year, California Hospital Medical Center serves as the official medical provider of the LA Marathon. To ensure that each participant is provided timely and proper medical attention, a team of volunteers consisting of doctors, nurses and tech professionals from California Hospital will be stationed in eight separate tents along the 26.2 mile course and at two locations at the finish line. An event that is as strenuous and as widely attended as the LA Marathon demands a tremendous amount of medical resources. While we hope that none of you have to see the medical team, know that California Hospital will again be ready to administer care for the thousands of runners who will be hitting the streets of LA on May 25.


The word of Rod

"Marathoning is like cutting yourself unexpectedly. You dip into the pain so gradually that the damage is done before you are aware of it. Unfortunately, when awareness comes, it is excruciating."

John Farrington, Australian marathoner

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

LA Marathon Price Increase 4/1 - Save money by registering early

The Registration Deadline Coming Up! Signing up for the LA Marathon? Hurry to grab the last discount! March 31st is the last day to take advantage of the price break before the full price goes into effect for the Marathon. The LA Marathon registration fee is currently $95 and will go up to $125 on April 1st. Click here to register on line, or mail in your entry(postmarked by March 31) to get the lower rate.

Green LA

The great team at LA, Inc. have an excellent post up on their site entitled “25 Green Facts About Los Angeles.” I’m hoping that runners who are considering traveling to LA for the Marathon have a look at this list. It’s exciting to see what’s happening with sustainability in Los Angeles, and we like to think the LA Marathon is now a part of that.


Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Anyone remember Martin Mondragon?

He won the third LA Marathon, in 1988, and we’ve got the footage to prove it. Here’s an interview I did with Toni Reavis about that race, along with some vintage 80s highlight video. Part of a continuing series on Toni’s five greatest LA Marathon races.


Dean Karnazes and the LA Marathon

On Saturday we got an inspiring visit from ultramarathoner Dean Karnazes. He came down to speak to our Roadrunners after their 17 mile training run in Venice. He’s got one great story after another, and we’ll soon be posting video from his talk. Even after a long morning run and his passionate talk, he still found the energy to sign autographs for a full hour. I sat down with Dean afterward to discuss his upcoming participation in the LA Marathon. That’s right—Dean’s going to come do our event. Not only that, but he’s cooking up a fun way to get to LA. We’ll give you the details of his plan soon, but here’s a hint: he’s not planning on driving to LA.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Getting ready for Run/Ex/09

This is a photo of Eric Brown and Fiona Blankenship of CollectiveLA. They’re the smart people who designed our new brand identity as well as the LA Marathon website. Eric and Fiona are also helping us create the signage and graphics that you’ll see at our Run/Ex/09 event at the LA Convention Center. On Friday we spent a couple hours in the South Hall working on the layout of the room. It’s huge! 200,000 square feet, to be exact. All of you will come through this space to pick up your numbers and shirts on either May 23rd or May 24th. We’re working very hard on improving this experience and giving everyone many reasons to hang around and enjoy some fun things to do. In the coming weeks, I’ll give you some sneak peaks at the ideas we’re bringing to this part of the marathon.


Saturday, March 21, 2009

Visit us at the Pasadena Marathon Expo

We're spending the weekend in Pasadena and if you're out at the event come visit our booth. We have our route map out, as well as this year's medals and technical shirt for you to look at. Stop by and say hi to Stacy.


Friday, March 20, 2009

Arly and Hayley—Episode #2

We’re following Arly Hernandez and Hayley Hickey, two SRLA runners, throughout their training for the 2009 LA Marathon. This episode highlights the importance of mentoring with student athletes. The stories here shine a spotlight on how SRLA is literally changing lives every day.


The word of Rod

"We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves...The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, 'You must not run faster than this, or hump higher than that.' The human spirit is indomitable."
- Sir Roger Bannister

Our visit to Koreatown

On Tuesday night Russ, Ginger and I were graciously welcomed to the Koreatown Rotary Club meeting. This year’s route travels through this vibrant community from Miles 23-26. Thanks to Richard Kim and Charles Kim, we spent a very enjoyable and productive evening sharing our LA Marathon plans with a number of business leaders from Koreatown.. It was an honor and a pleasure to discuss areas of common ground, and we brainstormed together on ways to build a fantastic entertainment center along Wilshire Blvd. This area is going to be a major energy center for runners on the home stretch of the race, and we’re excited about growing our relationship with this great community. Thanks again, Richard and Charles!

By the way, if any of you are fluent in Korean, here’s a report about the evening from the Korea Times.


Thursday, March 19, 2009

Facebook milestone

We just passed 500 friends on Facebook. I think that’s some kind of right of passage. Albeit a far cry from Barack Obama’s nearly 6 million friends. But still, I hope all of you are friending us. On our page you’ll find links to videos and photos, as well as over 500 supporters. While we’re on the subject, don’t forget about our Youtube page, with over two dozen videos posted already, and our Flickr page. Hope we can cross paths at one or all of these destinations!


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Denny Smith’s Legacy Poem

If you know any of the Legacy Runners, then you probably know Denny Smith. He has a unique spirit and energy that represent what is so great about this group. Have a look at Denny reading his LA Marathon poem at a Legacy get together. Anyone who has run our event will appreciate, and maybe laugh at, these words.


Sunday, March 15, 2009

LA Marathon timing system

Ever wonder how we accurately time over 20,000 athletes? So did KNBC, and they put together a news segment about our timing system.
Watch and learn.


Friday, March 13, 2009

Meet Arly Hernandez and Hayley Hickey

About 4,000 SRLA kids are currently training for this year’s LA Marathon. We’re about to introduce you to two of them. There are so many inspiring stories coming out of this program, we hardly know where to start. But we want to show you how SRLA is literally changing kids’ lives. In the next few months, we’ll be posting regular updates on Arly and Hayley as they train for the big event. We hope you’ll check back regularly and follow their stories.


Meet Haley -

Meet Arly -

Q and A with Bruce Rayner, our environmental advisor

As you’ve probably noticed, we’re working hard this year on making the LA Marathon a more sustainable event. We’ve enlisted Bruce Rayner of Fitplanet to answer a few questions about this process. Here’s what he had to say:

Peter: What does it mean to “green” the LA Marathon?

Bruce: It means the race organizers will be looking at everything that goes into producing the race for ways to reduce their environmental footprint. There are two questions FitPlanet is helping them ask.

First question: “Does this decision, action, or process result in waste, and if so can we reduce it or at least divert it from landfill?”

An example is the race bags everyone picks up at registration that contains the race number and lots of free goodies. Is the bag really necessary? The LA Marathon has decided that no, it’s not. So there will be no goody bags at this year’s LA Marathon - it’s just one less thing for the 20,000 runners to throw in the trash.

Second question: “Can we measure and reduce the carbon footprint of the race?”

Athlete travel to and from the LA Marathon represents perhaps the biggest single environmental consequence of the race. Many athletes fly in to LA from out of state or overseas. Most others will drive. Runners can do a couple of things that will dramatically reduce our footprint. The first is to ride share or take public transportation. This year, LA Marathon runners will be able to ride local public transit for free on race day. And LA Marathon is offering a ride share option through SpaceShare - check it out on the website. Independently, run might also consider purchasing carbon offsets for their travel, especially if they are flying.

Peter: Can you explain carbon offsets? I know many people don’t understand how they work.

Bruce: Good question. You’re right--most people don’t understand how they work and so there’s some resistance to using them. Basically, carbon offsets allow you to pay for someone else to not produce an equivalent amount of greenhouse gases that you are putting into the atmosphere. It’s important to know that offsets don’t reduce greenhouse gases, they just cancel out your emissions. It’s also called being carbon neutral. For more information visit afitplanet.com and visit the CO2 and U page. You can also buy FitPlanet GreenTags from our online store.

Peter: How can LA Marathon participants contribute to the greening of the event?

Bruce: Do what you can. Ride share or take public transport to and from the race. If you must throw something away at the start of finish of the course, check if it’s recyclable and put it in the recycling bin, especially plastic water bottles. At home and in your training, there are lots of things you can do. If you use gel in the metallic plastic packets, put the empties in a pocket or a sock and throw them away at home. Designate one day a month as “Trash Day” and pick up trash along your training course. Use a hydration system with reusable bottles, recycle your old running shoes, and support athletic product companies that are doing their part to go green.

Peter: I’ve heard that the LA Marathon is planning to get certified as an eco-race. What’s involved?

Bruce: The LA Marathon has applied for certification to the Council for Responsible Sport (www.resport.org ) standard. ReSport as its called, is like the LEED standard for events. It includes 40 credits in five environmental and social responsibility categories. To get certified the LA Marathon needs to earn at least 22 credits. The process is rigorous, requiring documentation and a site visit by a ReSport evaluator on race day. Certification is fairly new but will become more important and well recognized in the future. It’s the only way athletes can be certain when they sign up for a race that it is legitimately green.

Peter: Thanks Bruce! Great information

Monday, March 9, 2009

Green Laces!

I was introduced last week to Natalie Spilger, who came up with an inspiring idea called greenlaces.org. By wearing green shoe laces, which are made from 100% post consumer recycled plastic, you make a promise to the planet. The laces serve as a visual reminder of your commitment. Founded in 2008, GreenLaces provides environmental engagement for athletes of all caliber and ages. In its short existence, GreenLaces has gained the support of hundreds of Professional and Olympic athletes representing 10 different countries and educated hundreds of kids through their Green Your Game eco-education programs.

Athletes in support of GreenLaces include Board of Director’s and 3x World Champion Brandi Chastain, Olympic Gold Medalists Hope Solo (W.Soccer) and Cat Osterman (Softballl) and Basketball Player Chris Hernandez.

I’m buying some Green Laces myself, and I hope a bunch of you elect to run the LA Marathon in Green Laces, too.


Our 5 most popular posts of the last month

Here are the LA Marathon's top five articles from Feb. 1 - Mar. 1, 2009. Results are based on Google Analytics and in order of overall page views.

1. LA Marathon 2.0 - Peter

2. Los Angeles Marathon Announces Prize Purse, Bonuses for Elite Runners - Nick

3. Nick Curl, LA Marathon Race Director - Peter

4. Clif Bar fuels the LA Marathon - Peter

5. Goodies, but no bags - Russ

The Word of Rod

"We are different, in essence, from other men. If you want to win something, run 100 meters. If you want to experience something, run a marathon."
Emil Zatopek, winner of 5,000, 10,000 and Marathon at the ‘52 Helsinki Olympic Games

LA Marathon Coordinators Meeting

On Saturday we had our kick-off meeting with all of the coordinators whose hard work makes the Los Angeles Marathon happen. It was a great chance for all of them to get reacquainted with each other and to also meet the new LA Marathon staff. These coordinators handle many important logistical aspects of the race: volunteers, start/finish, elite runners, packet pick-up, etc. They are the mission-critical component of the event, and we're blessed to have such a dedicated and fun group. Join me in welcoming all of our coordinators back to the LA Marathon.


LA Marathon President Russ Pillar

LA Marathon Community Relations Director Ginger Williams and Sales Director John Wilson

Race Director Nick Curl

Elite hospitality coordinator Teri Jones, in her 24th year with the LA Marathon!

Volunteer Coordinator Manon Levenberg

Rob Alen from Honda in the house!

Finish Line Coordinator Steve Barnum

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Official LA Marathon hotels

If you’re running the Marathon and would like to walk to the start (and who wouldn’t), take a look at the Official Hotels of the LA Marathon. The Millenium Biltmore and the Omni Hotel have both extended special rates just for our participants, so take advantage of the opportunity and improve your race day experience.


Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Share a ride to the LA Marathon

How many of you are planning on driving to the LA Marathon this year? I’m guessing most of you. So why not share your vehicle and carpool to the Expo and the race? Make new friends AND reduce your carbon footprint. I think it’s a great concept, and this year we’ve partnered with Spaceshare to create our own ridesharing microsite. It’s organized by zip code, so you only need to log in and see who else in your neighborhood is also driving to the event. You can filter rideshare partners based on how early you want to arrive and when you plan on finishing the race. We hope many of you will take advantage of the program. Click Here for more information.


Monday, March 2, 2009

Students Run LA

No matter who wins this year’s LA Marathon, the greatest success stories will be told by the participants of Students Run LA, a program that challenges at-risk youth to train for and complete the LA Marathon.

Approximately 4,000 secondary students from Los Angeles communities rare currently training to run the marathon this year. More than 99% of these dedicated and amazing students finish the grueling race. And more than 98% of the high school seniors who complete the marathon with SRLA go on to graduate from high school

This vital program has positively affected the lives of more than 30,000 kids by helping teach them to set goals, fulfill commitments and develop character. In addition, SRLA provides these at-risk youths with adult mentoring and the obvious health benefits that result from running.

We’re tremendously proud of our association with SRLA, and we shot this video to show you what they’re all about.