By Harun Taylor
The heat began to rise early on Friday morning as the 31 runners of the 1000 Mile Club prepared to run half a marathon. The participants ranged in age from 31 to 67.
“I just want to complete it,” said Jose Sandoval, 31. “This is my first time running this distance.” Sandoval almost did. He ran 10.5 miles in 1:33:34.
Stretching next to him, 35-year-old veteran Chris Scull added, “This is going to be about discipline and determination. That will equal success.”
The temperature climbed into the mid-90s an hour into the race. Several Muslim runners took part as well, running during the Holy Month of Ramadan. None of them could take in water or even salt pills.
“You must hydrate well during the night before the run,” said 47-year-old Muslim runner Jerry “Malik” Gearin. “I drank 68 ounces of water and ate plenty of carbohydrates in preparation for today’s jog.”
Eric “Abdul Wahid” Moody, 44, ran half the distance.
“I came out to support my fellow runners. I couldn’t run the whole way — not during Ramadan.”
Lorenzo Hopson, 60, also known as “The Running Man,” completed 10 miles.
“I’ve put on a little bit of weight,” he said. “I feel a little heavy.”
Hopson hasn’t run competitively for eight months; however, he is one of the well-respected runners at The Q.
San Quentin News sports editor Rahsaan Thomas, also a member of the 1000 Mile Club, took part in the half marathon while fasting during Ramadan.
“I’m OK!” he exclaimed with a smile five miles into the run. “I’m pacing myself!” Thomas finished last at 2:39:15. Fifteen other runners didn’t complete the run.
After finishing the 13.2 miles, Gearin was reflective.
“You keep the remembrance of God and being free in your mind while you run. You have to know your limits, and when you’ve reached that, know when to stop. In 2013, I ran it in one hour and 48 minutes; this year, it’s one hour and 59 minutes,” he said.
By Harun Taylor