Manning the Bananas at the SF Rock and Roll Half

City Hall pre-race at dawn

City Hall pre-race at dawn

I wanted to run the San Francisco Rock & Roll Half, but it wasn’t happening this year. I decided to volunteer instead. Since the race ends at SF City Hall, about 4 blocks or so from my apartment building, I signed up for there.

Call time was 5:30am. We were served cold Noah’s breakfast sandwiches and warm coffee. They placed me and a couple other people at the bananas and bagels station. The race crew had bags and bags of small plain bagels and many boxes of bananas for the runners.

It was fun to smile at each runner and hand out bananas. They are the perfect food for runners. Carbs, potassium, it all helps a runner either before or after a hard race. I have never, ever seen so many bananas in my life!

So. Many. Bananas.

So. Many. Bananas.

So many people go into putting a large event like this together. The paid race crew was running around, talking on radios, making sure everything was in shape for the runners.

I remember the course last year. It’s really hard, especially at the beginning. It starts at Ocean Beach and goes about 4 miles straight uphill until it gets to the Golden Gate Bridge. Then it’s uphill over the bridge to the other side and back uphill over the bridge to SF. The course cruises down through the Presidio, along the water and then flat through the Marina, then a little uphill on Polk Street and just when you think you got it made, the course planners threw a wrench in and give you a little left turn back up a steep hill. Welcome to San Francisco! But that’s the last one and you’re nearly home free now.

It was warm too today, so with the warmer weather, the many uphill miles and the distance, the medical crew was very busy. I talked to a couple of the team and they said they had their hands full. Unfortunately, so many think they can just wing it, but not on this course.

Afterwards, I went home and after a bit of food and rest, got a decent 4-mile run in. My leg felt good, so I think all the work I’m doing strengthening is helping. I will do this race next year.


Setting up before the race.

Setting up before the race.


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