By Juliet Farmer

Sacramento is a great place to train for runs and triathlons, and when you need a little extra encouragement or companionship there are some great local running and triathlon clubs that will help you go the extra mile. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or have your sights set on the California International Marathon or Eppie’s Great Race, there’s a club to match your fitness level. Here are the best triathlon/running clubs in the Sacramento area.
Midtown Tri Club

Photo Credit: Juliet Farmer

Midtown Tri Club
Sacramento, CA
(530) 400-5481

Midtown Tri Club is a free club that offers training and support for all phases of a triathlon. The group meets weekly early Tuesday mornings in Natomas at NP3 Charter Middle School for a run, and weekly Thursday evenings at Natomas Racquet Club for a swim. There’s also a weekend brick workout that offers some combo of running/biking/swimming. Midtown Tri Club training director Jen Mathe, co-owner of One10 Performance & Nutrition, lends her 18+ years coaching experience to the club, drawing on her master’s degree in kinesiology/sport performance from CSUS and her bachelor’s degree in exercise physiology. Mathe is also a USA Triathlon-certified triathlon coach and American Swimming Coaches Assoc. certified swimming coach. And it’s free!

CBS Sacramento Insider tip: You’re not likely to find this caliber of coaching offered for free anywhere else!

Photo Credit: Juliet Farmer

Buffalo Chips Running Club
P.O. Box 19908
Sacramento, CA

Buffalo Chips, which started in 1974, is the oldest running club in Sacramento and boasts a large following of young and old, fast and slow, male and female runners (there’s even a Buffalo Chips walking group!). The Chips meet four times per week for workouts, with each workout focused on a different aspect of running (speed, tempo, hills, long). The largest turnout is Tuesday evenings in the Arden area for speed work, and smaller groups get together for tempo runs along the bike path on Thursday mornings. There are also long runs both Saturdays and Sundays starting at various locations (typically near the Nimbus Fish Hatchery). Membership fees include a subscription to The Buffalo Enquirer, The Buffalo Bible (club roster), and Club Running, the national quarterly publication of the Road Runners Club of America. They also receive discounts on entrance fees for all Chips races. Annual membership fees are $35 for individuals, $50 for
families, and $20 for full-time students 21 and under.

Sacramento Triathlon Club
P.O. Box 160446
Sacramento, CA

Sacramento Triathlon Club (STC) members run the gamut from first timers to Hawaii Ironman competitors, and pretty much everything in between. The Club holds regular Tuesday evening bricks (bike/run) in McKinley Park, and a swim group meets at Lake Natoma on Monday evenings. There are also various weekend workouts that are timed in conjunction with local and regional triathlons. The Club hosts an annual kickoff party, jersey pickup party, end of season party, post race barbecues, pizza parties, Ironman viewing parties and more. STC new member fees are $65 per person and include a club jersey. Renewal membership is $40 per year (not including jersey). A three-year new membership is $130, and renewal for three years is $105.

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River City Rebels Running Club
Sacramento, CA

River City Rebels Running Club meets four times per week for run workouts. On Tuesday evenings they meet at the American River College (ARC) track, on Wednesday evenings at the Guy West Bridge, on Saturday mornings at the ARC track, and on Sunday mornings in Gold River for a run along the bike trail. Membership includes being able to race as a member of the team on PAUSATF road and cross country races and the local Buzz Oates Run Sac Series. The Club also includes certified coaches that provide some guidance in helping you to meet your running goals. Membership fees are $25 annually and $40 for families.

El Dorado Hills Triathlon Club
6218 Edgehill
El Dorado Hills, CA
(916) 605-9961

The El Dorado Hills Triathlon Club typically has up to three weekend bike rides, Wednesday evening lake swims, and alternating Tuesday/Thursday track or distance runs, with locations changing from week to week. The purchase of an EDH Tri Club triathlon shirt or bike jersey is mandatory for all members, and membership starts at $25 per month (or $240 prepaid annually) and includes access to the member calendar and participation in group workouts. For $40 monthly ($420 annually prepaid), you’ll also get access to a coaches’ forum and more personal focus on your goals.

Golden Valley Harriers
P.O. Box 454
Davis, CA

Golden Valley Harriers (GVH) runs a fast workout every Tuesday. Thursday evenings are easy recovery workouts and Saturday morning is a steady, longer run from Fleet Feet in Davis. Membership is $25 per year, which pays for insurance during organized group workouts. Members get access to the GVH Yahoo group and club workouts.

Juliet Farmer was born and raised in Sacramento, where she resides with her husband, two cats, and rescued greyhound. She is a freelance writer who regularly writes about food, pets, health and wellness, entertainment, and more.