Running for health and exercise is virtuous, but sometimes you just want to pin on a bib number and race against hundreds of others. Here’s our weekly best bet for races of various lengths and surfaces.
Sacramento 5K Resolution Run
When: 9 a.m. Friday, Jan. 1
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Where: Crocker Park, Sacramento
Reason to Run: What better way to start the new year than to run a PR on the fast, flat, out-and-back course along the Sacramento River. There’s not a hill to be found.
Auburn Resolution Run 10 Mile/10K/5K
When: 1 p.m. Friday, Jan. 1.
Where: American River Overlook Park, 855 Pacific Ave., Auburn
Reason to Run: This is the 16th running of the New Year’s Day hybrid trail/road race that plunges into the canyon and traverses part of the Western States 100-Mile Run and American River 50-Mile Run routes. Note the later starting time to accommodate those who partied the night before.
Jed Smith Ultra Classic 50-Mile, 50K, 30K, Half Marathon
When: 7:30 a.m. Feb. 6
Where: American River Parkway, Watt Avenue access
Cost: $70 (50-mile); $60 (50K); $45 (30K); $40 (half-marathon)
Reason to Run: It will be the 38th running of this ultra, sponsored by the Buffalo Chips Running Club. It’s not a trail ultra nor a road ultra. It’s parkway ultra, run on both crushed granite and asphalt and a few dirt paths. If you want to compete against the really speedy runners, try the 50-mile.