San Francisco Hot Chocolate 15K Race Review & Recap


On Sunday, January 10, 2016 I ran for chocolate.

Although I usually run for bloody Marys, or pancakes… on this special day- I made an exception.

This race was off the charts awesome!

It was held in San Francisco, CA.

Home of my younger sister and of course the Hot Chocolate 15k / 5k race.


We went to the expo the day before to pick up our packets.

It was very well organized, despite the fact that there were 2 billion people there.

I also ran into a few friends…



Nuun is an official sponsor of the race and it was served on the course.

Super awesome!

I bought a couple (okay 4) more tubes and coerced my sister into trying it out.


Anyway, there were about 15-20 booths at the expo.

We had fun checking everything out and taking pictures.


Participants receive a very nice zip-up with their entry (which I was stoked to wear after the race) and the packet pick-up went very smoothly.

I was very impressed by the amount of man-power that went into running both the expo and the race itself.


On race day, we were out the door around 6:30 AM to meet our Uber driver.

We got to the race with plenty of time!

My sister ran the 5K- so I hung around and watched the start.

There were over 80,000 people running either the 5K or the 15K, but everything was wonderfully organized.

My race started at around 8:30 AM.


I was freezing (thanks a bunch, weather!), so I was very thankful to start running so I could warm up.

As I previously mentioned Nuun was available at the aid stations, as well as water aaaannnnddddd chocolate!

Aid station 1: chocolate chips
Aid station 2: M&Ms
Aid station 3: I skipped this one (sorry)
Aid station 4: Marshmallows

I thought this was a fantastic perk and is something that you don’t see during most normal races.

It definitely gave me something to look forward to!

The first 5K took runners through Golden Gate Park.

It is absolutely gorgeous!

I would love to run through this park again the next time I am in town.

The second 5K ran along Highway 35, which is right next to the ocean.

The waves were crashing and the sky was beautiful!


This was the flatter portion of the race, with teeny tiny rolling hills.

And then came the last 5K.

I was definitely not prepared for this section.

It was an uphill climb for almost 2.5 miles!

Goodness, it was challenging.

I made it, thankfully.

And met my sister at the finish line, where I received my super cool medal.


Love it!

My sister then walked me over to the Race Celebration Area.

The race volunteers were dancing, singing and screaming at the tops of their lungs.

It was a sight to see.

It was definitely the most enthusiasm I have seen by volunteers in a while.

It was very refreshing!


Speaking of refreshing…

These excited volunteers met me with the most wonderful present I could imagine.

More chocolate.

I was starving and quickly devoured the contents of my cup.

Chocolate fondant with a banana, rice crispie treat, pretzel and chocolate stick dipping sauce.

Yes, I ate all of it.

No, I didn’t care.

It was absolutely delicious.

Finish time: 1:32.59

This was one of the most organized and highly staffed races with the best swag and most energetic volunteers I have ever seen.

“Disclaimer: I received a complementary entry into the Hot Chocolate 15K to review as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out to review find and write race reviews!”

I highly recommend this race and would recommend it even if I didn’t receive a free entry!



17 thoughts on “San Francisco Hot Chocolate 15K Race Review & Recap

  1. Wenaissance says:

    I did the 5K in San Diego last year and I discovered there are a ton of hills downtown. Sheesh, it was exhausting! Loved the chocolate. Hated the lack of toilet paper in EVERY port-a-potty. This is a fun, very organized event and a good one for the kids.


  2. usabaker says:

    You were running in my home town! I miss being there 🙂 In high school I ran cross county in Golden Gate park you wouldn’t know it but there are allot of trails in the park if you get off the main roads. Glad you had fun on the run and enjoyed the City By The Bay,,,


  3. Kate @ Did That Just Happen? says:

    This is on my list for next year – and I have a friend I talked (conned) into running my first 5k race with me – the week before chocolate comes to my area, but I’ve already told him, “next year, we are making the drive to Dallas for Chocolate!” 🙂


  4. Beer Battered & Fried Collheesie says:

    I’m glad you posted this! I’m new to running and saw that this was in my area soon, but my last themed race was a disaster. I signed up for a zombie run that the day, time, and location kept changing, then it was canceled twice and ended with them just keeping my money. I’ll have to check this one out!


  5. James @ HalfMarathonJames says:

    80.000 people? Wow that is a huge race!

    I can’t eat chocolate while running, which is actually quite surprising considering how much I love it. But it doesn’t agree with me when I’m on the move. Bloody Marys could be an interesting fuel for a race though lol


  6. kellynotkatie says:

    Oh my goodness I can’t believe there were so many people there- that’s impressive!! I just started training (today….) for an upcoming 5K and I am impressed by your time! I’m a beginning runner so it can only get easier, right?

    Liked by 1 person

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