Author: Fallon @ Slacker Runner

JUNE JUMPED

I feel like I stood on a cliff on June 3 and jumped. Then it was July. Anyone else?

Let’s see…

Training for Santa Rosa in not where it should be. Luckily it’s early stages still but it doesn’t fill me with confidence for July and August. I ran way less miles than I had originally planned. Or even thought I did. I felt like I had a better month than the numbers show. And the numbers show next to nothing. I set up the most basic of training outlines which mostly just highlights how many miles my long run should be each week and somehow, I am already off track. Crap.

Part of the lower miles was heat related- it was over 100 for a couple of weeks. I never managed an early run as I slept like crap for about 2 weeks too. There were a couple of nights of no sleep. Even my watch was like are you ok? The first night I actually hit 7 hours in June, it gave me a congratulations. Ha! That didn’t stick around though. Boo.

I also wasn’t feeling so great in June. My chest still hurts and normally by now, my allergies start to ease up. I can’t sleep or even find a good position to lay down when my chest feels inflamed. Went for my annual chest x-ray and it shows nothing. Which is good but also annoying.

I did manage to get in some good trail miles though. A couple of which I looked like Ranger Rick for. I am trying to work out more sun coverage for the longer time on my feet days. Can’t find a good hat with decent airflow that covers my face and my ears.

On the work front my boss quit. WTH dude. Don’t worry I said that to his face, no talking behind his back. Then after a couple weeks of thought and stress, I took the jump. And now I have a promotion and a new title. Yay? Now I just need to get my ducks in a row. Thankfully I have an amazing crew, so we will make it work. July is our busiest month though so this should be interesting. Actually it’s the busiest month for the whole city so double yay?

While July is shaping up to be busy, I also have some PTO coming. Not as much as originally planned but still some. I am torn between hiding in a dark room for those days and decompressing or getting out and doing something. May depend on the weather… and the gas prices. There is also a local race I may sign up for. I am not in 10k shape but I do love this race and haven’t run it in years. Oh, and I have a birthday.

Here’s to July- Fingers crossed?

Point Buchon Trail

I’ve heard good things about the Point Buchon trail but never managed to follow through. Which is also silly as the Jurassic trail I’ve done multiple times uses the same parking lot. Granted Point Buchon was closed for a chunk of time during COVID and as the entire trail is actually on PG&E property, that was a hard closure.

To get to the trail head, you park at the very last lot in MDO and head for a tall fence. The small gate in the fence is only open on certain dates and times. Once through there, it’s short uphill paved drive to the check in. You have to sign in and out at the ranger station and you have to be off the trail by dusk. Like I said PG&E property and technically part of a nuclear power plant, so they take that pretty seriously.

It is also probably due to those reasons that this is the most well marked trail I have ever been on. There is no way to get lost, zero. Numerous trail markers along the way, signs warning you when the trail was going to end. As well as numerous look out points along the way with benches to sit and just enjoy the views. There were also multiple signs which would talk about the native wildlife, the Native American tribe- Chumash- who used to live there and what PG&E is doing for conservation. There was a sign referencing that the lighthouse used for the original Pete’s Dragon used to stand on what they call Disney Point. It was only up for a short period of time but it’s cool story. There is also still a working ranch on the property and part of trail takes you though cow pastures. There were babies!! Oh, and a sinkhole!

The trail is just under 8 miles out and back and very user friendly. The first 2 miles is nice and wide, very runnable. The last 2 miles turn to single track and on windy days you will get pushed around. There is also a half mile stretch in there of very soft gravel, your feet will sink but still very manageable. There was also access to a porta-pottie at Windy Point. We went all the way to the end before turning around. The views were amazing and it was a nice clear day when we started. Once you hit Windy Point, you can also see the power plant in the distance.

For a bonus, as we were almost back to the start, we found an offshoot trail that led to a private beach. It had some really cool rock formations as well as a cool cave to explore.

This was a great trail and I have no idea what took me so long to get to it. Except for the snake. I hate snakes and I had my first snake sighting about 6 miles into the trail. I still do it again, haha.

Manic May

Whereas April felt like it was 3 years long, May was 3 seconds long. How does that even happen?

Training wise, I had my best month of the year. Granted that’s not saying much but it’s still a positive, right? I ran 2 races- Yosemite Half and Silver Moon. Granted, I dropped from the 6 hour times race to the 10k at Silver Moon but no regrets there.

I ran some roads and some trails. In fact, I finally made it out to a trail I’ve had on my list for a few years. Stuck in the middle of writing that blog post though. Oops. I also settled on a training strategy for Santa Rosa Marathon (half) in August. I say strategy because training plans and I do not get along.

Work wise, the month was a little rough. The busy months are coming and I feel ill prepared. My boss also turned in their notice in May so things are interesting. Thankfully, I really do have a great crew.

Oh, I picked up 2 new pairs of running shoes too! Granted, I ran the others into the ground and they needed to be replaced but new shoes are exciting for any reason, right? However my bank account would prefer that I don’t need to replace both pairs at the same time again, ha.

I also added a few more books to Total for the year. Somehow I’ve read over 40 books at this point in 2022. Huh??

So, yeah May was interesting.

Silver Moon Race Recap

I first heard about Silver Moon back in 2021 but it was same weekend I was running CDA Half up in Idaho. I was bummed to be missing out on a new local race, especially since most of my local races had all disappeared… and that was even before COVID.

So when it came back for 2022, I was on board. Except it was pricey. I had trouble rationalizing that kind of $$$ for a 10K. The race offered a 10k, 6-12-24 hour, and 100 mile option and a wine walk. The 6 hour was only $10 more than the 10k so I thought why not? Plus the race started at 6pm and ran until midnight which meant hours of running under the full moon. I figured I could do between 3-4 mile an hour and just have fun and enjoy a new challenge. I knew I was in no shape for any form of speed.

Race day came only 7 days after Yosemite Half. Which may have been fine except my quads were screaming from the 7ish miles of downhill and my feet were still raw from wearing the wrong damn socks on race day. #rookiemove Then a period from hell along with a migraine moved in on Thursday/ Friday. In fact, I left work early on Friday, I felt so horrible.

For the next 24 hours, I went back and forth on DNS’ing, dropping to the 10k or stupidly trying for the whole thing. Did I mention it was supposed to be in the low 90’s at go time? The slightly smarter part of me prevailed and I dropped to the 10k.

The race takes place at Cass Winery and consists of a 2 mile loop around the vineyards. Dirt road is my favorite surface and I didn’t even need my trail shoes.

The race actually started a little early and we were off on our first loop. The 10k had 3, so slightly shorter than a full 10K. It was 91 degrees. I died 1/4 mile in. I was so damn hot, I don’t know if I’ve ever felt that hot before. I almost lost my lunch around mile 5, never been that nauseous at a race before. I would say I walked 99.9% of this “race”. Even walking, my heart rate was in the red for the entirety of the 6 miles. Ouch.

Finish 1:29:17

I crossed the finish line and wanted nothing more than an ice cold Coke. I found warm coke at the finish line aid but found ice cold water up in the Barrell Room at the after party for the 10K runners and the wine walkers. I also may have hid in the air conditioned room until I was less tomato red, ha!

The party was still going when I left but all I could think about was a nice cold Frappuccino from Starbucks. So I made my way there via the backroads… only to be told they closed early! I was so bummed.

Beauty of back roads

The concept of this race was great and I really liked the loops around the vineyard, this was just not my day. I still hope it comes back next year, I need redemption.

Yosemite Half Recap

I have been trying to run a Vacation Races race since before the pandemic. I think I have deferred either
voluntarily or due to COVID for 3-4 different races. Oops.

In 2021, Kate and I were supposed to run Lake Powell in October but well, life. We decided to defer to
Yosemite Half as it looked amazing and gave us until May 2022. Sounded perfect! Kate trained and I
well… yeah.

Anyways, May came faster than I thought it would. Suddenly it was time to race. I drove up to
Yosemite with my mom and Kate and her boyfriend flew in from Texas. We met up for a carb heavy
dinner on Friday before the race and bemoaned the fact that we needed a 3AM wake up call to meet
the shuttles. Ouch. The race was a point to point race starting up the mountain in the forest and
running down to Bass Lake.



The shuttle to the race went perfect even if I closed my eyes on the winding, back roads. I get car sick
too easy for that. It dropped us off at the start in the cold, dark woods. The announcers were trying to
keep everyone’s spirits up and there were plenty of porta-potties. Hehe. This race did something very
smart- they started the slower runners and walkers first. I’ve always wondered why races don’t do that.
I was planning on running with Kate and while we weren’t their exact target pace, we jumped in with
the runners/walkers and started at 5:45.


The first few miles are on a nice dirt road winding through the forest. I was in runners heaven. Kate
however was not. Things were not going her way and just before mile 3 and the first aid station, she
told me she was dropping. I was sad and after double checking that she was good, I continued on my
way. Miles 1-3 took around 50ish minutes.


I knew I was in no shape to run this race so I figured I would just run what I could and walk what I
couldn’t. Except I forgot to take into account my love of forests and the downhill miles coming up.
For the next 7 miles, I was throwing down miles in the low 12’s and high 11’s. This was not going to end
well. The only mile that was slower at the point was the one I had to lose my top layer and replace my
bib. That took effort, ha! I was loving the downhill and all the views but knew I was probably going to
pay for this fun.

And I did, the blow up started around mile 10 and continued on to the finish of the race. These miles
flattened out a bit and as we got closer to the lake, the humidity upped itself a notch too. I was toast. I
pretty much walked in these miles. The last 3 miles took around 45 minutes.


I crossed the finish line 3:04:53. Who knew I was going to be so close to under 3?

Also who knew I was going to be happy about that considering my PR is an hour faster than that. But considering where I am fitness wise right now, that number is something I am good with. And yes, I know the downhill was a
huge help but it gives me hope. Plus I got to see Kate this weekend and finally run a Vacation Race. It
will not be my last.

Despite the shuttle driver getting horribly lost twice on the back from Bass Lake. Ha!