Race Day, Recap, Run!

2016 Surf City Recap

Race- Surf City 13.1

Location- Huntington Beach, CA

Saturday- 

After the hotel snafu of Saturday and once I accepted that I would not have a nice, leisurely race morning- after my mother and I had mapped out a long, circuitous route to the race start- I realized the even bigger mistake I had made.   I hadn’t packed any water.   What? How?!  I had a bottle of Gatorade and my Skratch Labs but no water outside of what I had drank on the drive down.  Face palm.   So after a yummy dinner at Red Robin- water, lettuce wrapped burger and a few fries for me- we stopped at a Walgreen’s.    Where I bought 8 bottles of water.  🙂    Then it was back to the hotel for a little downtime before I headed to bed early.  And proceeded to wake up every hour on the hour.  Grrr.

Race day-

Luckily, I have my pre-race ritual down, so I don’t have to get up too early.   As of right now, I am still racing on an empty stomach and it has been working out.   The race had a 7:45 start but I wasn’t planning on being there super early, I knew it would be a while before my corral crossed the start line.   My mom was able to drop me off a few blocks from the start line a little before 7:30.   Another bonus about arriving “late”?  No line at the port-a-potties.   Except the damn thing almost blew over with me in it!

   
 Ok, the corrals.   Serious cluster-f***.  What is the point of asking a participant their projected finish time if it’s not used for corral placement?    More than a few people in my corral were in a similar position.    I put down a projected 2:10 finish time.   The 3:30 pacers were about 2000 people ahead of me.  Seriously.    I considering jumping corrals but at that point it was already so late.  Grrrr.    My corral crossed the start line around 8:15.

  
Miles 1-3 10:09, 10:14, 10:09

My plan was to treat this like a well supported long run and hopefully maintain around a 10:00 min pace.  Mile 1 started out ok.   My legs felt good and my pace felt good.  Mile 2 required more dodging. Don’t get me wrong, I have no problem with people walking at races- however if you are walking 6 people across in the first 2 miles of a race- we have an issue!   This happened more than once.   Then the first water station was a crowded mess but I had learned from last year that this was the case and just avoided it all.      I also a music snafu in mile 2.  I had started my playlist in the starting corrals and paused it.   When I pushed start around mile 2, Christmas music started playing.  What?!

Miles 4-6 10:30, 10:54, 11:08

By my standards, this course is flat, the only real hill is in mile 4.  I was excited to see it as I had an ankle ache that I needed to run out.   And I did but I was starting to realize that I was having troubles catching my breath.   I didn’t feel like I was pushing hard but I was starting to wheeze.   I took a quick walk break to try and get things under control.  It didn’t really help.   There was a little down hill coming up and I was hoping to make up some speed but I just kept slowing down.   My inhaler wasn’t helping either.   Mile 6 is where I got real.   This breathing issue is not new.  I have been having troubles since I was sick in January.  It’s more than my usual asthma, it comes with some odd chest pain, but I was hoping that denial would make it all go away.   Because that works so well, right?  Yeah no.   I called my mom during mile 6 and let her know I was having some issues but was going to tough out.    I didn’t need her getting the real time runner alerts and wondering what the hell was going on.  🙂

Miles 7-9 11:50, 11:35, 11:37

New game plan was a run/ walk plan.  4:30 of running and 1:00 of walking.   The running was slow so I was hoping that these intervals would keep me moving but not gasping for breath.  I changed my watch face to just show the interval times so I had no idea what my overall time was.   This was a long section of out and back so I was able to see Ashley of RatherbeRunnin’ coming back on the other side of the highway looking strong.    Luckily the course is scenic so I was able to enjoy the view.  I also had time to people watch.  PSA here,  a fabric may be black but that does not mean that it is opaque!  If I can see the moles on your butt- wear underwear!!  Ok, PSA over.

  

Mile 10- 13:04

This was a struggle.  Even 4:30 seemed like way too long to run.  I was wheezing and the inhaler was useless.    We ran through the Cliff shot zone in mile 10 and I grabbed a citrus and a mocha one.  Both have caffeine and I was hoping for a Hail Mary pass and that one would help.    I walked a lot.   The finish line seemed so very far away.

Miles 11-13 12:17, 11:50, 11:36

I was beginning to think this was going to be my slowest half yet.   And it was getting so hot.  I had been drinking water at each station but now I was dumping it down my back too.   The volunteers were also having troubles keeping up with the demand for water.  There were some stations out of cups.  I am hoping more were on the way as there were thousands of people behind me still.   I was trying to stick to my intervals but the walking sections were getting longer.   It was getting more crowded on the course as well.  I accidentally smacked a guy in the crotch when he came up on my right.  Oops!!!  Sorry!    I just kept moving towards the finish line, the increased crowd support was helping.    I walked the beginning of mile 13 and then ran the rest in.  I crossed the finish line gasping and wheezing and promptly burst into tears.

Finish- 2:28:24

  

Not my slowest!!!   I collected my medal and avoided all the photographers.    I heard my mom and thought I was losing it but then realized she was on the other side of the fence.  I made my way through the recovery stations and then out of the chute into the crowd.    I met with my mom and headed to a curb to sit.  My legs felt good but I was so tired from fighting my lungs for so long.    It gave me time to admire my medal though- it’s huge!!!!  And was fought for.    But it was also a lesson in something I should already know- you can’t ignore things and hope they go away.  It doesn’t work like that.    Was this race I wanted?  No.   But every rough race is a lesson learned, right?   I still got to run with thousands of other crazies like me.   🙂   And for the record- I have a doctor’s appointment next week.

   
They were some things I didn’t like about the race this year but overall it is a good race.  The weather is gorgeous- just bare in mind that temps hit the high 70’s.    Perfect beach weather post race.  🙂

The day was finished out resting in the hotel watching the Super Bowl- yay Broncos!!    I needed some time off my feet—I had big plans for Monday—-Disneyland!!!!!  But I’ll save those adventures for next post.  🙂