Saturday, February 28, 2009

Dodger Stadium hill training

Thanks to the Los Angeles Dodgers, our LA Roadrunners were able to hold a massive hill training session this morning at Dodger Stadium. It was a terrific event, and 300 of us were treated to lots of coaching and encouragement from Rod Dixon, drinks from Gatorade and all the bananas and water we needed. I loved getting to explore the outer reaches of the 600 acre compound--who knew there was a separate hilltop lot up behind the Think Blue sign? Also, I'd never seen the spectacular view of downtown from the southern edge of the lot. I hope everyone had as good a time as I did.


The word of Rod

The trouble with jogging is that the ice falls out of your glass. ~Martin Mull

Thursday, February 26, 2009

The essence of the marathon

If you were to distill the concept of the marathon down to a 30 second statement, how would you describe it? We asked Toni Reavis this question, and we got a very simple and descriptive answer.


Monday, February 23, 2009

Clif Bar fuels the LA Marathon

You are all certainly aware of Clif Bar’s great products. We’re big fans of theirs, and we’re excited about the partnership between Clif Bar and the LA Marathon. However, you may not know about the Clif Bar Pace Team. There will be a number of Pace Teams present at race day to help guide you smoothly to the finish at your target pace. At their website you can even print out your own pace wrist band with all of your mile splits indicated on it. Here’s a good article from Runner’s World about the Team.
We can’t wait to see them at the start line!


Thursday, February 19, 2009

Legacy Saturday

I’m sure you’re aware of our Legacy Runners. This group of 248 has run every single LA Marathon, 23 in a row. Occasionally some of them will get together for a group workout, and last Saturday Lou Briones and Denny Smith invited me to join them for a morning run in Playa del Rey. While I wasn’t quite up to their complete 11 mile outing, I did manage to do a short run and meet a bunch of the crew. They’re a great group, and there isn’t anyone more committed to the LA Marathon. Denny brought along his collection of 23 years of marathon artwork, and we gathered for a quick group shot before taking off.


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Rod Dixon’s 1983 New York City Marathon victory

Without question one of the greatest races of all time. 25 years later, Rod filled us in on what it was like from his point of view. The closest finish in the history of that Marathon. Incredible.


Toni’s LA Marathon Top 5 highlights, #5

Last time Toni Reavis stopped by the office, he gave us his top 5 all-time LA Marathon highlights. We found the videotapes, and here’s what we came up with for the 2006 race. This clip illustrates just how exciting our Challenge is.


Friday, February 13, 2009

The word of Rod

There are as many reasons for running as there are days in the year, years in my life. But mostly I run because I am an animal and a child, an artist and a saint. So, too, are you. Find your own play, your own self-renewing compulsion, and you will become the person you are meant to be. ~George Sheehan

Toni Reavis’ top five running movies

1) The Sting, 1973. Robert Redford does some of the best on-screen running several times in this entertaining period piece. Put him on the 4 X 400 meter Tinsel Town Dream Team.

2) Running, 1979. Starrring Michael Douglas, this pic portrays running in such high camp, i.e. Douglas wearing his necktie as a headband (huh?), that it bends all the way past bad back into good (in a masochistic sort of way).

3) Marathon Man, 1976. Dustin Hoffman was a real distance runner, and portrayed the act and the mentality honestly in this George Roy Hill directed Nazi-themed thriller.

3) Jericho Mile, 1979. Word was that Peter Strauss got down into the low 4:20s while filming this made-for-TV prison-yard yarn.

4) Chariot's of Fire, 1981. Not because it won the Academy Award as best picture of the year, or because of the Vangelis score, but because it nailed the imbalanced, morally repugnant relationship between athletes and their federation officials, the vestiges of which remain with us today.

5) Fire on the Track, 1995. The Story of Steve Prefontaine, America's most charismatic runner, and now James Dean-like legend told by those who knew him best. Their efforts helped start and sustain the running boom of the 1970s in whose field we still toil today.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Goodies, but no bags

The LA Marathon will hand out goodies this year, but without the attached bags. After really looking at what many events call “goody bags,” we felt we could do better for our participants. Typically, these plastic bags are filled with a bunch of paper flyers and possibly a few things that someone would actually be interested in. In the case of the LA Marathon, 50,000 participants and volunteers mean that “goody bags for all” create a colossal amount of waste and don’t significantly improve the customer experience. So we’re cutting the waste and improving the experience, all at once. We’ll make sure everyone gets their goodies from Honda, Clif Bar and other partners while we give the environment a break.


Our 5 most popular posts of the last month

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

1. Raise your hand if you want a technical shirt - Peter

2. LA Marathon price increase 4/1 - Russ

3. New earlier marathon start time - Nick

4. A sustainable marathon? - Peter

5. Who here runs with music? - Peter


$100,000 “Challenge Bonus” Tops List of Awards

LOS ANGELES, Calif.— The Los Angeles Marathon, which pioneered the “challenge bonus” among big-city marathons, has announced its prize purse and bonus structure for the May 25, 2009 race. In addition to awards for the top five male and top five female runners, there are time-based bonuses and the “challenge bonus” – which goes to the first runner, male or female, across the...

Click here to see the full release...

Friday, February 6, 2009

The Word of Rod Dixon

The only reason I would take up jogging is so that I could hear heavy breathing again. ~Erma Bombeck

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Nick Curl, LA Marathon Race Director

The busiest guy in our office is our Race Director Nick Curl. He’s a veteran of many marathons and other events, and his office is like the nerve center here at HQ. So what does he do all day? A lot! I sat down with him for the explanation.


Rod Dixon on proper stride technique

Ever wonder what a proper running stride should look like? Well, wonder no more. Here’s our man Rod demystifying this all-important aspect of running. He gives you some simple exercises you can use to develop better technique, and you can see him demonstrate his butter-smooth stride at the UCLA track.


Wednesday, February 4, 2009

LA Marathon 2.0

For those of you who are interested, you’ll be happy to know that we now have a host of social media options related to the LA Marathon. We look forward to seeing you at all of these places, and feel free to post photos, comments and videos. We’re adding content, but these community gather points depend on input from all of you.




Monday, February 2, 2009

How we spent our weekend

It was a busy running weekend for our staff. These are some highlights:

• Stacy Embretson, our Director of Operations, ran the Surf City Marathon as a pace leader. Her target time was 4:20 and she came in at 4:18:16. Not bad!

• Ginger Williams, our Director of Community Relations, ran the Surf City Half Marathon.

• Nick Curl and Rod Dixon were both down at our Roadrunners training session Saturday morning.

• I took my kids and nephew—ages 9,10 and 11—down to run the Super Bowl 5K in Redondo Beach. I’m proud to say they all finished without any whining. Although the highlight was seeing Team Fluffy Bunny finish the 10K as a 6-man caterpillar in under 35 minutes—Wow!


Rod Dixon’s top ten running books

1. Once a runner....John Parker
2. Running Within....Jerry Lynch
3. On the Wings of Mercury....Lorraine Moller
4. The Four Minute Mile....Roger Bannister
5. The Kings of Distance....Peter Lovesey
6. No Bugles No Drums....Peter Snell
7. Kiwis Can Fly....Ivan Agnew
8. Ultra Marathon Man....Dean Karnazes
9. Healthy Intelligent Training....Dr Keith Livingston
10. 50 Greatest Marathons....William Cockerell