Rock n Roll San Jose Recap

Disclaimer: I received an entry into Rock n Roll San Jose 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!

After the worst night of sleep or lack thereof, I was up and getting ready for the race.  I was also regretting the Spaghetti Factory dinner from the night before.  😛  I got ready and headed off to the start line.

The race started at 8 and while the Slacker in me liked that, every other part of me was worried.  That is late.  I knew I was going to be slower than planned.  I still had to check out of my hotel.  Rock n Roll had sent out a heat advisory email the night before.  Let’s get this show on the road!  Except we didn’t.  I can usually guess exactly what time my corral is going to start for Rock N Roll races but I would have been so wrong this time.  There was some delay for the trains? Buses? I don’t know but I was confused.   I didn’t cross the start line until almost 8:30 and it already felt warm.  I hate humidity.

Miles 1-3 9:58, 10:42, 10:21, 11:05
Irritation fueled the first mile.  I had a feeling I wouldn’t be able to maintain that.   My legs felt ok but the rest of me felt off- just kind of not present.    I was running and felt like I was pushing but I knew I really wasn’t.  I was realizing just how many turns this race course was going take.  We turned so many times.   We ran through the San Pedro Market area which brought us past the Spaghetti Factory- nope, nope.  Then it was another turn and we were coming back towards the start line.  I heard a woman tell her running partner that it was too hot for her.

Miles 5-8 11:05, 11:21, 11:31, 11:23
So much flat road.  We were running towards the SAP Center and into an area of apartments and strip malls.  I found the perfect apartment complex- an Orange Theory and Papa Johns were across the parking lot.  Replace the Papa Johns with Domino’s and I am sold!  The things we think about when trying to not think about running.  😜  So many more turns and we were in Santa Clara.   I felt like we were so far away the finish line.  I needed a hill.  Why was it so warm, it’s October!   There were some damn nice houses we ran by during this block as well.

Miles 9-12 12:58, 11:33, 12:26, 12:02
Oh, what the hell?  My right hip/ sciatica seized and I ground to a slow crawl.  I spent mile 9 mostly walking and punching myself in the butt.  🤣  I kind of wonder what I looked like to the runners behind me.   I ran more in mile 10 but 11 was more of the same.   Grrr.  My stomach cramps from the morning also returned.   Really?? What else?  I was taking more walk breaks trying to loosen up my hip area.  I was drinking water and Gatorade at every station and dumping water on my Buff then shoving it down my shirt to cool off.  Classy, right?  This course had an abundance of cheerleaders and they were needed as I was fading.

Mile 13 11:15
Around mile 11.5, the 2:30 pacer passed me.  Umm, excuse me?  I know they started after me and I was on pace for a 2:30 so they had no business passing me.  I picked up the pace a bit because I was so ready to be done.  Sure enough I passed the pace group in the last stretch to the finish line as they slammed on the breaks.

Finish – 2:30:00 on the nose

I was done, I was hot and my hip hurt.  I made my way through the long finisher’s chute, getting my medal and food before finally making my way out and meeting up with my mother.   In one good thing, the finisher chute pretty much dumped us out right at my hotel parking lot so I didn’t have far to hobble.

If you love flat, this is the race for you.  I did like running through the neighborhoods of San Jose and course support- aid stations, music and cheerleaders.   But I need hills.  I don’t know if they would have made much of a difference that day but I missed them.  Also, I haven’t been that sore post race in years- even after both marathons.  😛

Week 36:Upcoming Races-Rock n Roll San Jose Training Week 8

Upcoming Races-

  • Rock n Roll San Jose 13.1 (Thank you BibRave!)-10/8
  • City to the Sea 13.1-10/14
  • Rock n Roll Los Angeles 13.1 (Thank you BibRave!)- 10/29
  • Monterey Bay Half Marathon (Thank you BibRave!)- 11/12

Fried.  That’s how I would describe this week.

I knew it was going to be a hectic one and I thought I planned accordingly.   But well, life.

The week was already short due to the holiday and then I was off Friday to chaperone a multi-day tennis trip for my mother’s team.    I tried to cram all I could in at work in 3 short days as well as get in all my workouts before we left.

The plan called for a 6 mile run, 50 minute tempo, 9 mile long run and the last 4 Liift4 workouts.

Monday- 9 miles/ Liift4
Long run on a Monday- say what?? I knew the weekend ahead was going to be super busy so with a Monday off work I thought I would get my long run out of the way.  Yet, I woke up nauseaus again.  I did a crazy Liift4 workout in the morning and debated skipping the run.  I headed out in the late afternoon for what I was sure was going to be a 4 mile slog.   Instead I somehow had the best 9 mile run that I have had in over a year.     Hell, it was the best long run I’ve had in years.  Who knew?

Tuesday- Liift4
This final week of workouts was kicking my ass.  I don’t think I’ve ever sweat this much in my life.

Wednesday- Rest
I meant to do another Liift4 workout but my stomach was being a total asshat.  So instead I picked up some last minute supplies for the weekend trip.

Thursday- 3.75 miles
This was supposed to be longer but my legs weren’t feeling it.   This was actually slower paced than Monday’s long run too.  Way to bring me back down to earth legs.   My right hip was cranky, I really need to start doing my PT exercises again.

Friday/ Saturday- Tennis Road Trip
So tired, the days were long and stressful and so freakin’ hot!   I layered on sunblock, I stayed in the shade as much as possible, I wore a hat and somehow I still ended up with my worst sunburn in years.   It hurt.   By the time we got home on Saturday, I was just mentally done.  Teenagers are hard.

Sunday- Rest
This was not the plan.  I needed another 6 miles and should have completed the leg workout for Liift4.  However… the sunburn.  Owwww!  Everything hurt.  It hurt to the touch, it hurt to move, clothing hurt- there was no way I was putting a sports bra on.  Nope.

12.77 miles for the week.  Stupid sunburn!  Also the Liift4 challenge is complete even if I missed a few and I feel a little adrift.   Oops.

How was your week?

SLO Ultra 5K Recap

A part of me almost upgraded to the half during the week leading up to this race. Now, I’m so glad I didn’t.

Race morning came and my stomach was being a total asshat. Not too unusual so I just got ready like normal and hit the road. While I drove, I had some ginger mints hoping to calm my stomach.  I thought it helped.

The race was held in a combo of El Chorro Regional Park and Dairy Creek Golf Course, parking was across the highway at the community college.   It was stressed heavily that we either had to pay for parking during registration or have cash on hand on race morning.  I paid during registration.   Yet on race morning there no sign of anyone to take cash, so half the runners didn’t pay.  Grrr.  I ended up talking about it with with a couple.   I spoke with a volunteer as I left the lot, chatted with another as we waited to cross the highway.  Actually, this was the most I’ve ever talked at a race and some of the friendliest people throughout.

The start was about a mile away and I arrived in time to see the delayed start of the half marathon.   Turns out the inflatable arch had a little issue.  The 50K had started at 6:30.  I got in line to use the port-a-potties which is when I had my sad sunglasses incident.  Boo. After some announcements and the National Anthem, we were off and running.

Mile 1-11:07

Oh, god, I’m nauseous, why am nauseous? Where did that come from? And I’m breathing like I’m sprinting but I’m not. What is going on?? The first mile wound up a back road away from the park towards a ranch. It was paved but in poor condition and you were dodging cow dung along the way. It was a tiny incline but all of this would have been fine had I not been feeling like I needed to find a bush to throw up in. I slowed to a walk about 3/4 a mile in and tried to walk it out. I wasn’t upchucking in public!

Mile 2-10:48

More walking. Still nauseated. The road had switched to dirt and the incline picked up a bit. Part way up the road was blocked by a gate- it wasn’t open. We had to climb over it. Single file. Surprise! I think the complete stop I came to while I waited for my turn helped a bit because I picked up the pace on the other side and ran a bit. Then walked a bit, then ran. We had a little downhill and I was able to pass a few of the people who had passed me previously. Truthfully at this point, I didn’t care.

Mile 3-10:46

I’m still not feeling right but I just want to be done. I take water at the one aid station and hustle on. The next 1/4 mile was the “trail-iest” section of the whole race. We climbed a small hill and could see the finish line a ways off- across the golf course. My watch was already at 3 miles. Grrr. I ran past a few people (even sick, I’ll take advantage of any tiny downhill) then it was sidewalk and golf course running to the finish line.

A little boy and I had been playing leap frog for 2 miles- he’d pass me every time I’d walk. We were both powering to the finish and it’s sad that instinct is telling you to win. 😂 I pulled up and let him cross first.

Finish-36.23   Garmin Pace-10:49*3.4 miles    Official pace- 11:44

For once in the numerous times I’ve run races by this organization, water and snacks were easy to find at the finish.  Yay!   I grabbed a bag of salty chips thinking they might help with nausea.  I chatted with some other runners and we helped each other take finisher pics.  Then I started the trek back to the car.

*I am normally never one to say the course ran long; I know I suck at tangents.  However, I really couldn’t go wrong during the first 2 miles and mile 3 was more of a follow the leader with no course markings.  Plus, thanks to Strava I know that I am not the only one who measured it long.  All the public users did- so I am going to call the course long.   Doesn’t change the official pace though, it is what it is.

This wasn’t a bad race.  I really wouldn’t call it a “trail” race, I know the other distances were.  It wasn’t the great views of last year and I missed those. The organization was better than previous races and the medal is a good one.   Bling makes everything better right?😀

Vintner’s 5 Miler Race Recap

Dang those targeted Instagram ads that sneak up on you.    I was scrolling my feed one evening when a cute wine bottle shaped medal jumped out at me.  I don’t know why- I don’t even drink wine- but I saw that it was in Santa Barbara, fit my training plan, reasonably priced and vineyards usually meant dirt of some sort.  So I clicked through and registered.

As race day loomed, I was tired and fussy and wondering why I even registered.  They said the proceeds were for the Santa Ynez Valley Aquatic Foundation so maybe they could just use the donation?   Then I noticed the winery wasn’t actually in Santa Barbara but Lompoc and spoiler alert- it wasn’t really there either.  However I laid out a lazy flat runner and tried to get some sleep for the early morning drive south.

Race morning was actually a bit chilly in home town and made me question my shorts choice.   After a little driving shenanigans, we arrived at the race location- Sanford Winery and were directed to parking.   Then I had to decide on what shoes to wear.  If you’ve never run in an actual vineyard before, they can be a mixed bag.  They range from super nice fire road to ankle rolling hellish nightmare.  I didn’t know what this was going to be.  I wanted the cushion of my Levitates but chose my trail shoes.   Smart choice.

Picked up my bib and shirt, used the port a potty and waited for the start.  It was around 60 and overcast but at the last-minute I tossed my long sleeve layer to my mother.  I normally run cold but something told me I wouldn’t need it.   After a few announcements that I couldn’t understand over the spotty PA system, we were off through the winery.

Miles 1-2 10:14, 11:29

Dirt roads- yes!  But woah, that is some loose dirt.   And what the hell, my shorts just turned into underwear.  I’d never had that problem with this pair before.   I spent the next mile or so pulling my shorts down every 20 or so yards.  It was super humid so my lungs weren’t happy and I was breathing hard but I wasn’t out there to set any records.   Mile 1 had the cutest mile marker- a wine barrel with 1 foot painted on it.  By mile 2 and the wine barrel with 2 feet on it I figured out the pattern but I am a horrible blogger and failed to take pictures of any of the mile markers.

The fog came back, boo

Mile 3- 15:12

On the upshot, my shorts calmed down and behaved the rest of the race.  Downside #1, we started a 300 foot climb.  Downside #2- I hit a rock with my bad foot and rolled it in a bad way.   Colorful words spilled from my mouth and I slammed to a halt.  Then I hobbled my way up and on, trying to make sure that I didn’t step on any more rocks.   The route was still mostly dirt path but the rocks were getting bigger.  This also made them easier to avoid but I had to focus on where I was landing my feet.  What was I thinking running a race?

Miles 4-5 9:36, 10:42

Mile 4 started by running through a barn and for some reason I found a second wind.  We had a little bit of a downhill but because my foot was being an asshat I couldn’t really RUN downhill.  I was still trying to watch where my feet were landing before they landed and avoid all rocks.  As well as check out the cool outbuildings and the scenery in the vineyard as the sun had come out and it looked super pretty.   I managed to find another rock coming down a little bump in the last mile and let another string of words fly.  A guy running next to me asked if the hill was too steep, I refrained from being a smart ass and replying that it wasn’t even a hill in my opinion and just said I had hurt my foot a few miles back.   The last bit of the race had us running literally in between the vines.  Oh holy hell of rockiness.  There was nowhere to put my feet that didn’t hurt.  I damn near walked it but I was so close to being done.  As it is, I slowed way down.   Finally another few curves and there was the finish line!

Finish-57:44

If we consider this a true trail race- it was my fastest 5 miler by 7 minutes but as it only had 400 ish feet of elevation gain, I am not sure if I do.

Once across the line, there was some confusion.  Registration claimed it came with a medal and wine glass for every participant but neither was anywhere to be seen.    Now,  I downgraded from the festival to just the race so the lack of wine glass was not a huge deal to me but the lack of medal was a little confusing as there had been zero announcements.

I was not the only one confused as evidenced by Facebook comments post race.  We eventually received an email that said there had been a delay with the medals and that they would arrive Monday, then the race would be in touch with us after that.  However it is now Thursday and that was the last time the race reached out.    I have run numerous races with no medals but it’s another thing to say you are going to do something and then not do it.

Communication issues aside, I really did like this race and would consider running it again.

Week 25- Of Heat and Headaches

What’s up party people?

Yah, no, I’m never saying that again.

Last week was a typical work week.  I got in a few miles, did some yoga (say what?), probably watched too much TV, probably ate too much food, definitely consumed too much popcorn while watching Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.  Oh and I Twitter stalked the Western States results.  As one does.

Monday- 2.32 miles   I headed for the lake path after work hoping that the combo of the dirt trail and the flatness of the loop would be good for my foot.   It was a little warm- mid 80’s but I was only out there for a short time so how bad could it be?  Good lord, I was sweating so bad in those short 2 miles- what gives?  😛  However, as long as I focused on my form and how I landed on both my ankle and my left foot, it wasn’t a bad run.  I was feeling a little encouraged.

Tuesday- Rest  I wasn’t going to be stupid though and push it.

Wednesday- Rest I was actually supposed to attend a business mixer after work but I ended up feeling super nauseous and sick to my stomach towards the end of work so I ended up just going home.   Which sucked because I was planning on running after the mixer too.  However when I got back to town, I realized those plans would have been scrapped anyways as town was blanketed in smoke due to a brush fire on the army base.

Thursday- 3.14 miles It was 60 degrees in work town and 100 in home town, where do you think I ran?   Yeah, I never claimed to be a genius.   It actually didn’t feel that hot but I tried to be smart and made sure I took walk breaks consistently even if I didn’t feel like I needed them.  I also made sure I had plenty of hydration on me.  Overall, this was a decent run and I only one odd twinge from my foot.

Friday- Hey, migraine, I didn’t invite you to the party.

Saturday- Yoga My migraine was still an unwanted visitor when I woke up in the morning and it never really eased up.  It was another really hot day so I wasn’t going to push it with my head already being on the edge.  Instead I started a yoga series in the evening.

Sunday- 5 miles/ yoga Temps in the 80’s felt pretty marvelous after the previous few days.  I wasn’t feeling like running though so I kept putting it off. Truthfully I just wanted to take a nap.  But I made myself change and lace up my shoes and get out there for a few miles.  I told myself to do 3 but I was feeling ok so I ended up doing my neighborhood “easy” 5.    I shouldn’t call it that… the hills make it feel the opposite of easy.  I later did the second yoga video.

10.5 miles for the week.  Well, at least the number is going up and I think my foot is starting to cooperate.  Fingers crossed.

How was your week?