Sacramento Running News

Running news and gossip from in and around Sacramento

Plenty to Choose from in Fall Half Marathons

October 29, 2016 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races

Charlie Brenneman (left) and the author show off their Urban Cow trophies. (SRN photo)

Charlie Brenneman (left) and the author show off their Urban Cow trophies. (SRN photo)

If races have seasons, then we’re definitely in the middle of road half marathon season. October has already seen the Urban Cow, Humboldt Redwoods (part of the PAUSATF Road Grand Prix), and Folsom Blues Breakout.

Next weekend, you have a choice between the Clarksburg Country Run, or the new Run the Parkway Half, hosted by the Sacramento Running Association.

It’s hard to imagine that SRA isn’t directly targeting the Clarksburg events since they are offering similar 20 mile and 5 km distances alongside a more competitive half marathon.


Fast Times are Traditional at Jed Smith Ultra Classic

February 19, 2014 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Masters Runners, Ultrarunning

Hanna (left) and Pommier lead the pack. (Photo by Joe McCladdie)

Hanna (left) and Pommier lead the pack. (Photo by Joe McCladdie)

There is a certain appeal that has kept one of the regions oldest ultras going year after year. While some races tout scenic or difficult routes, the Jed Smith Ultra Classic, hosted by the Buffalo Chips, is where ultrarunners go to be fast.

The race features two ultra distance races–50 mile and 50 km–as well as a 30 km and new 13.1 mile “fun run.” All of these are run on a 4.9 mile loop course along the American River, between Watt Avenue and the Guy West Bridge at CSUS.

This year, despite being early February, the weather was more like fine spring day, which made for pleasant running, spectating, and volunteering.


Run With Me at Urban Cow Half Marathon!

October 02, 2013 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races

John Blue will be leading the 1:30 pace group at Urban Cow this year.

John Blue will be leading the 1:30 pace group at Urban Cow this year.

I’m excited to announce I’ll be back pacing at the Urban Cow Half Marathon this Sunday, October 6.

If you are looking to run a 1:30 race, I’ll be your guide.

Race Director Rich Hanna says it’ll be the fifth time I’ve paced this event (including a time or two when this race had a full marathon), and I have a history of hitting my goal times quite accurately.


Oakley Lenses for Trail and Road

August 26, 2013 By: John Blue Category: Product Review

The email came out of the blue: “Running shoes aren’t the only thing necessary for running,” it read. “It’s important for runners to also protect their eyes with quality, high-performance, activity-specific sunglasses. Avid runners need quality gear.”

We get this kind of email from time to time, and generally ignore them. But this time, the email came from Oakley.

I have to admit I was an easy mark, as I’ve been a big fan of Oakley sunglasses for many years and already own three different pairs. I’ve long used them because the optics are fantastically sharp and the frames fit my face. They also don’t slide down my nose when I run.

My old friend Richie played an important part in my enthusiasm for eye protection and quality lenses. It started in the summer of 1974 when Richie got a Wrist Rocket slingshot for his birthday. When we weren’t busy terrorizing (but never successfully hitting) squirrels throughout the neighborhood, we were busy using it to break things.


We’re Back!

November 01, 2012 By: John Blue Category: General Running News

On the shoulder of Batizovský štít

In case you were wondering, I didn’t just give up on the Sacramento Running News. I have, in fact, been out of the country for most of the month of October and not able to post here.

I have been travelling in the Czech Republic and the Republic of Slovakia where I was given the opportunity to be a guest lecturer on environmental topics.

In my down time, I had many interesting and peculiar adventures of the type you get when you can’t understand anything being said around you.



No Urban Cow Pacing For Me!

September 28, 2011 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races


When I took up the challenge of this website, one of my early decisions was that it wasn’t going to be about me.

However, since I did promise you all that I’d be pacing the 1:40 group at this Sunday’s Urban Cow Half Marathon, I figured I owe it to you to let you know I’ve had to back out of that commitment.

I seem to have injured myself pretty seriously last week and will probably not be running for several weeks–much less by next weekend. (In case you are curious, it looks like a ruptured tendon in my foot.)

I’ve enjoyed being a pacer and helping other runners achieve their goals at this event and feel bad about leaving them and Urban Cow race management in a lurch. Race management is scrambling to find someone to fill this role and I have no doubt they will find someone by race day. I just won’t be me.


Urban Cow Pace Team

September 01, 2011 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races

John Blue will be leading the 1:40 pace group at Urban Cow this year.

The pace leaders for the Urban Cow Half Marathon have been posted! Once again, I’ll be setting the pace for the 1:40 group so be sure to say “Hello” if you’re out there.

I’ll be the one holding a big sign that says “1:40.” It’s hard to miss.

In case you’re wondering, last year, leading this same pace group, I finished in 1:39:48.

So if you are planning to run 1:40 at Urban Cow, or maybe 1:39:48, then I’m your guy. It’ll be great.





Jed Smith Finds a New Home

February 11, 2011 By: John Blue Category: Ultrarunning

50 km winner Chad Worthen accepts his winner's certificate from Co-Race Director John Blue

How fast can you run 30 km? How about 50 km? Fifty miles?

This past weekend, a small crowd of distance runners met up at the Watt Avenue access to the American River to explore that question.

The Jed Smith Ultra Classic is a 33-year-old, local tradition hosted by the Buffalo Chips Running Club.

Traditionally held at Gibson Ranch Park in Elverta, the race has been relocated along the American River due to cuts in the County’s park budget.


Urban Cow Half Marathon: Entry Fees on the Mooove!

September 22, 2010 By: John Blue Category: General Running News, Road Races

John Blue finishing up his pacing of the 2008 Cowtown Marathon

If you are planning to run the Urban Cow Half Marathon this year, you should know the fees go up on September 27th.

In case you’ve been living under a rock or somewhere far outside the Sacramento Metroplex, Urban Cow is the new name for the race that had been known as the Cowtown Half.

The owners of the other Cowtown Marathon got pissy with our race just being generally better, if for no other reason than our race is in Sacramento and not Fort Worth.

Lawyers, or the threat of lawyers, got involved and suddenly it is the Urban Cow Half Marathon. You can read the story behind all the name changes right here on the event’s history page.

If you were maybe sitting on the fence, and were trying to decide whether or not you had the fortitude to run this thing somewhere in the neighborhood of 1:40, you can join me, John Blue, as I lead this epic pace group.

There will be other pacers there, and maybe their pace is more what you were looking for, but I guarantee you that I will make many dumb jokes and do my best to get you in by 1:40.

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