Hood to Coast Movie Review


Last night was a fabulous day in runner nerd (aka runnerd) land, as the Hood to Coast movie was playing all across the country.  For those of you not in the know, Hood to Coast is one of the more well known relays, where people are on a team (usually 10-12 people, depending on the relay) and take turns running (hence the “relay” idea) a distance that various, but usually ends up around 200 miles.  Hood to Coast is twelve person teams covering 197 miles, and it is a huuuuuge event with over 1,000 teams running.  That’s a crazy amount of runners! 

I think I forgot to mention that I’m doing the Reach the Beach Relay in Massachusetts at the end of May with a bunch of fabulous NYC runners.  As a relay team bonding event (with no running involved), we met up for appetizers (emphasis on the fried pickles) and then headed over to the movie together.  I’ve admittedly never attempted to go to the movies with fifteen-ish people…we took up over half a row!  That’s kind cool.  The whole runner movie idea reminded me of watching the Spirit of the Marathon in the theater right before the 2007 Chicago Marathon (of death!).  It was a little different because most people at Spirit of the Marathon were getting ready to run two days later, but it was fun to see some people wearing Reach the Beach shirts to the movie.

In a nutshell:  The movie was fantastic!  I thought it was really interesting and actually made me laugh and made some others cry.  They followed five different teams:  a group of masters runners who have been doing Reach the Beach for over 20 years, a team who randomly signed up for it having no idea what it actually involved, a team honoring their family member/friend who had a heart attack at age thirty and died, a team of older women, one of who had a heart attack during Reach the Beach the year before, and a team of elite runners (who they hardly mentioned).  Seeing the race from so many different perspectives was awesome and really helped make the movie.  Plus, it got me soooooo excited to run the relay in May!  I’m a geek and may have been smiling for 90% of the movie.

Highlights of the movie:

  • The beautiful course.  If anyone ever needs anyone to be on their team for this one, sign me up and I’ll find a way to be there!
  • The non-runner who said that running a hard leg in the middle of the night was absolutely awesome.  I can’t wait for some late night runs during the relay!
  • Seeing what running means to different people.  Some relay members have been running their entire lives while others were doing it to honor family members.  Running means something different to me than it does to you, and I love hearing about those differences.
  • Runners are nuts.  I LOVE IT.
  • One of the non-runners ate a Gu on camera and had the exact same reaction I always have…”This is disgusting.”  Then I usually vomit it back up.  (Okay, it’s not really vomit since I never swallow.  But Gu and I are not friends.)
  • I need to start incorporating power arches into my running lifestyle.  Look it up/watch the movie.
  • Running will always be a part of my life…people may slow down as they age, but they’re still runners.  I just hope the heart attacks stay away.


It was sooooo good!  I definitely recommend it if you’re a runner or if you want to give someone a glimpse into our crazy minds.  :)  I always thought a relay would be a great time with fun people, but now I know it’s going to be awesome!  Not sure if the movie is going to be released on DVD or reshown in theaters, but check it out if you can!

Have you ever run one of these long distance relays?  Did you get a chance to check out the movie last night?  My longest relay ever was the distance medley relay in high school…I ran the mile.  :)

safety first, kids

I could talk about what a fabulous weekend I had and how I can’t believe it’s Sunday night.  I mean, nights out with ladies like Shannon are awesome, so I can’t really complain much.  After wandering the Upper East Side looking for a bar to strike our fancy, we ended up heading to a BBQ joint simply because they had fabulously large margaritas.  We chatted it up with the bartender and enjoyed these beauties:

Random January Weekend 2011 (4) Delicious.

Random January Weekend 2011 (5) The bartender had us a-glowin’!

I could then talk about how I finished the night off by dancing away with my new friend, Lindsay, who I met through Shannon.

But you don’t want to hear about that.

Nor do you want to hear about my latest New York-y adventure, which involved eating at the Elephant and Castle, which is aptly named if you know anything about my love for elephants.  This little guy was right at home:

Random January Weekend 2011 (11)Gatsby with his friends!

I’m 100% positive you don’t want to hear about this delicious food I ate:

Random January Weekend 2011 (9) Shrimp and avocado?  Yes, please.

Food was nicely followed by an evening of comedy at Comix in the Meatpacking District, where I’ve never been before (apparently Meatpacking doesn’t really go with my love for sweatpants…).  You certainly wouldn’t be interested in hearing me talking about a, um, foreign substance (rhymes with “pot”…or is) that overpowered the little arena in smell during Larry Miller’s performance.  That might actually be too interesting.  (Yay New York-y things!)

Oh no no no, instead we shall chat about safety issues on the subway.  That’s right.  Mind the gap, walk left stand right, and avoid the crazies who appear to be yelling aggressively.  I got off the E train this afternoon in order to switch to the 6, and I had to walk down most of the platform to get to the stairs (I have yet to perfect where I need to get on the subway to minimize my walk at the end…).  I had music on so I wasn’t paying too much attention, but I did see a man on the side standing next to a loaded shopping cart (I’m not judging, but you probably know what that means…), and he appeared to be yelling aggressively at people and randomly walking towards some of them.  Since I had headphones in, I didn’t hear what he was yelling about, but I veered to go far around him because it didn’t seem like the best idea to be close.

Which is when it happened.  I got punched in the back of the head.  Huh?!?!  That’s not the type of New York-y things I was talking about!  Not going to lie, that hurt a little bit.  I was a bit dazed and wasn’t exactly sure on the course of action here, so I just power walked to the escalator and ran up it.  I didn’t see any sort of security type person, so I just proceeded on my way.  (Bad, I know.)

Really?  Did that just happen?  I don’t believe it.  I don’t wear headphones when I’m running for many reasons, one of them being safety issues in regards to hearing cars coming, but I did not expect that on the subway.  Something was clearly wrong with this person, but I think it’s important to note that you always need to be aware of your surroundings and what is going on around you.  This is important both in running and in life.

Oh, and you should probably just walk around with some big muscular guy to protect you.  Except all my friends in NYC are runners and clearly don’t fit that bill…at least we can run fast!

Have you ever experienced any sort of violence, either personally or being a bystander?  I will admit that men on the buses in Rome (tight quarters…) often didn’t act appropriately.  Gross.


After that shining moment, I recuperated and ended up heading out for a run.  I was supposed to do 14 miles, but I totally wasn’t feeling it.  Motivation has been lacking this weekend and I’m not happy about it!  I decided to move the long run to Tuesday (my day off!) and just get out for seven.  Ugh, what a long seven miles!  I don’t know why I’m not feeling these runs right now, but I hope I snap out of it quickly.  Paces are fine and they don’t feel terrible, but I’m counting down the miles and I’m not normally like that at all…it’s usually more like, “What?  The run is over already??  I want to run more!”

Sunday, January 9
7.17 miles in 56:26, avg pace of 7:52

This week is a new week, and hopefully I’ll stop making a fool out of myself and not get punched in the head.  I hope.  Low standards, this week, I suppose…

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