Saturday, August 16, 2014

Summer Hill Series 2014

This summer the Gritty City Track club ran and is still running the hills around the Rosebowl.  We meet in front of the rosebowl aquatic center to run hills, hills and more hills.  Every Tuesday, you will see us ready to run hills by 6:15pm.
The group waits at the top of every hill.  While we wait, many of us do at least ten push ups at the top of each hill. Push-ups are Gritty City's secret weapon for staying in top shape.
Another fun part of this summer was cheering for the finishers of the AC 100.  We made a field trip out it and ran to the waterfall in Pasadena.
Here is the group at the end of a run.  The good thing about the rosebowl is that everyone can choose the number of hills they want to do.  Anywhere between 6-12 hills. 
Some may say that the best part of the summer hill series is the watermelon and socializing at the end!!!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Griffith Park Relay Marathon 2014

The Griffith Park relay was a fun event.  It was a picknick-like atmosphere where every runner did 5.3 miles. This year Gritty City had two teams participate.  There was a men's team and a women's team.
The men's team included: Danny, Adrian, Jason, Richard and Hugo.

The men's team ran hard and Hugo closed off the team with an amazing 36 minute split. The men ran strong but were defeated by the ARC men's open team.  Maybe next year.

For the women, Erin started off the women's team by running the fastest split of 39 minutes.  Vivian followed by running the second leg.  Tamera followed and battled the tough hills of Griffith Park and handed off the baton to Vanessa. Daisy closed off the team which finished in first place(women's open division.)
This was a great honor and next year, we are going for the elite division tittle!  

After the run, some of us danced to the DJ music and others went for another run.  Grits always want to add more miles.  The rosebowl hills were definately good training for todays run.  
Some of us hanging out after our runs.  It was a breezy day with perfect weather.

Vanessa and Daisy handing off the baton.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Holiday Half Marathon 2013

On December 15th, Gritty City had its last USATF race of the 2013 year.  As part of the USATF Grand Prix competition, Gritty City competes with other track clubs around southern California.  The Holiday Half Marathon was the last race where Gritty could score points.  The course was relatively flat with some rolling hills which allowed a few grits to PR on this course.  The club's official score will be posted later.

L-R on top Hugo, Annie, Pureza, Adrian, Jason, Vivian, Portia
L-R on bottom, Lisa, Janet & Art
Shout out to Tony & George who did not make it in the picture.

Gritty Holiday Party 2013

This Holiday, we gathered at Salidang Song in Pasadena to celebrate a great year on the track. We had good Thai food and talked about life and running.
Julio, Amy with Husband, Sarah & Tony

Right before starting their meal.

After eating, we welcomed new board members and congratulated old board members.  The new board members included club president Alex Bruno.  Alex was the original club president and has come back to lead the group again. 

We talked inside the restaurant until it was time to close.  We got this great shot of the group outside. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Pancake Flip-Off

On Satuday October 2nd, the Gritty City Track Club competed in the pancake flip off.  The Pancake Flip Off is a fundraiser that is put on by the Pasadena Pacers, where different running clubs compete in a pancake making competition.  First people run and when they come back they try the pancakes and put money in the donation jar.  The club that makes the most money wins.

Our club had amazing chefs: Paul and Vanessa.  Paul featured strawberry and Ricotta pancakes while Vanessa showed off her culinary skills with her cheesecake and pumpkin pancakes.  The pancakes were a hit!! They were the best tasting pancakes.
chef Vanessa(left) club pres. Tamera(right)-making pancakes

chef Paul(left) and club president Tamera(right)

As I went to different tables and tried the pancakes, cookies, sausages and even sausage/pancakes on a stick....I knew we had some competition.  However, when I stopped to casually talk to people, they all said the same thing. "you should go try the pancakes over there" as they pointed at the gritty table.  I knew we would win by taste, if not by money.

The best part was that there was a huge Gritty turn out.  Some people just came to put in their money.  Others became interested in doing track workouts.   It was so nice to see the love and support from the running community.

Pureza and MCH wore a banana and pumpkin costume to lure more customers in.  Everytime someone put money in the jar, they would do a money dance which kept the money coming.  In the end, we made over $500 and earned second place in the competition!  Second out of four is not bad at all for our one and only fundraiser of the year.
MCH doing a shimmy shake as Charles drops a check

Pureza and MCH luring customers in with their dancing skills
MCH, Alex, Vivian and Pureza counting up the money

The Grits celebrating their 2nd place victory

The grits came out in numbers to help raise money

Santa Monica 5000

On October 6th, 2013 Grits lined up to race at the Santa Monica 5000.  The male competitors included Tony, Hugo, Brian and Jason while the women included Pureza, Suzanne and Vivian.  We were lucky to have Richard, Tamera and Adrian as wonderful spectators and cheerleaders.  The U.S. Track and Field Association requires at least 5 competitors per road race so we were glad to have registered members running this race.

Santa Monica weather was a little sunny but overall a nice running day.  Hugo and Jason took off in the lead. Brian, Tony and Vivian ran nearly side by side until the last 100 meters.  The friendly competition allowed them to push a little harder. Pureza had a great run even though she claimed to have partied the night before and Suzanne rounded up the Gritty team by finishing in the first half of her division.

At the end of the race, we enjoyed the free giveaways at the peer which included running lights, nutri-bullets samples and nutrition.  We even saw Dino from the ARC who graciously took our picture.  When the results came out we found that Jason Wang placed second in his division!  After he got his medal, we headed to Suzanne's beach rental a few minutes away.

We ate a delicious vegan chili made by Adrienne and played on the beach.   The guys even got in the water while Suzanne and Vivian sun bathed.  The run, the food and play all made for a long day.  A great day at the beach!!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Bell-Jeff Cross Country Invitational 2013

This year the Gritty City Track Club represented at the Bell-Jeff invitational with an all womens team.  The team consisted of this group of ladies:Tamera, Vanessa, Janna, Erin and me(Vivian).  Erin came in first for the women with a time of eighteen minutes.  The womens division was competitive.  The teams included the Janes, the Nike womens team and the ARC women.  The hilly course consisted of 2.9 miles of dirt path with a small portion of pavement.  Erin originally from Boston and Janna from Chicago were surprised by the number of hills at Griffith park but they raced like champions.  Vanessa put in amazing effort by finishing third for the Gritty women and Tamera rounded off the team by racing neck and neck with two other competitors at the finish line.  A great day for the Gritty women!
L-R, Vivian Valdivia, Tamera Brown, Vanessa Luna, Janna Louie, Erin Ballard.