Disclaimer: I received free entry to Holiday Half as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!
Race start was a leisurely 8 but after a night of utterly horrible sleep, there was no need for my alarm and morning came too early. I knew I needed to get my bib before the race so we checked out first thing and headed for the Fairplex. The Pomona Raceway and Fairplex has more than enough parking but getting in was more challenging than I anticipated and took longer than I planned for. Once we finally parked, we booked it down to the race start where everything was clearly labeled and picking up my bib and race shirt was easy-peasy.
Then the clothing debate was on. I was cold so I was wearing a long sleeve with my BibRave tank over it and my black fleece vest over that. I had my beanie or trucker hat to choose from and had gloves. I still wasn’t feeling great and tend to run cold so I was thinking all the layers. My mother ended up taking the beanie and talked me out of the vest as well although I was whining about it the whole time. I ran with my old waist belt instead of my pack as well because I didn’t want anything heavy on my chest. So still feeling cold, I lined up at the start and under a dusting of fake snow, we were off!
Miles 1-3- 10:03, 11:33, 12:05
I knew this was going to be slower, I was thinking around a 12 min pace likely and figured I would pay more attention to my heart rate than my pace. First mile- oops but I was feeling ok as we wound out of the Fairplex and into the surrounding neighborhoods. I knew from the race website, it had some rolling hills so I made the early decision to walk them just because I had been sick. Then I had to forcibly remind myself of that on the first one. Mile 2, I was already tired, haha! And mile 3, I was overheating. The weatherman lied- how the hell do I get this undershirt off? I am going to melt! We also hit the actual drag strip which was cool and the main reason I slowed- I took a lot of pictures. 😛
Miles 4-8- 11:12, 11:34, 11:48, 12:12, 12:16
The track actually gave me a little bit of a second wind so I was moving a little faster than I had originally planned. Not exactly speedy but better than I had predicted. The course was winding us through neighborhoods and parks and campgrounds and I was just enjoying the view. We ran passed Raging Waters so that was kind of cool. There was a lake on our left for a good chunk of the miles so there was always something to look at. The pacers were making me mad though. At this point the 2:20 and 2:15 pacers passed me, which would have been fine, except they were running together! Ummm- that’s not how it works! Mile 8 brought us down into a park that we looped and then back out.
Miles 9-12- 11:32, 12:37, 12:27, 13:12
Things were going good until 9.5. Then my body was done. My legs and hips started talking back about the lack of miles in the last 2 months and I felt an asthma attack coming. I came to a halt and then walked. A lot, all the hills, most of the flats and only really ran the downhills. Bummer as this section leveled out and brought us back to the race track. Here another pacer ticked me off. At mile 11.75 and 2:18 in (yes, I checked my watch) the 2:40 pacer passed me- running. Wait, what? I know they started after me, what the heck are they doing??
This mile drove me crazy. I was trying to not have an asthma attack but I wanted to run and be done. This mile was mostly S-curving through the race track parking lot to pick up mileage as we headed back to the Fairplex and it was in full sun. Why????? I still walked portions but finally jogged it in to the finish. Where’s my snowflake? Oh wait, it’s a wreath.😛
I met up with my mother at the end of the finish chute and we hung out for a bit. It was a little bit of a party going on but in the end I was sore and wheezing and needed to sit so we headed back to the car.
I knew I wasn’t trained or fully healthy going into this race so I am A-Ok with my finishing time. It was even a little better than I thought it might be and still not my slowest. This was a great course though and I wonder what I could do healthy- those hills spoke to me.
Oh and the 2:40 pacer? Finished before me. 🤨
Oh- and I got a fancy finisher’s certificate from Athlinks!