BibRave, Race Day, Recap, Run!

Oaktown Half Recap

Disclaimer: I received an entry into Oaktown 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.

Oh, Oakland, for being a flat city (that I’ve seen) you sure give me my ups and downs.

After a rough night’s sleep or lack there of, I was up early and out the door to make my way to race start. The perk of my hotel was that the start was only 2 blocks up. I thought there would be more runners there or out and about but there weren’t. It was kind of odd.

Start and finish

Picking up my bib and shirt were fairly easy. I got the feeling I wasn’t the only person whose expo in a box hadn’t arrived. I folded my shirt as small as I could then shoved it in my pack instead of gear checking. I then stood in the longest bathroom line ever only to discover the port-a-potties had no TP. What?!?

I met up with a couple other BibRavePros before heading to the start line.

Miles 1-3 10:09, 10:24, 10:50
I had loosely planned on taking it easy and just trying to run consistently, pace be damned. I felt pretty consistent the first few miles as we headed towards the Jack London part of town before turning back. This is also where I took most of the mural photos.

Miles 4-6 11:16, 11:00, 11:28
I was feeling ok and only walking through aid stations but it was getting warm. It felt very muggy. We were looping around Lake Merritt and as much as I was looking forward to running around Lake Merritt I knew I was about to hate it.

Miles 7-9 11:22, 11:36, 11:53
Oh my god, get me away from this lake. The lake was the mother of all out and backs- run almost all the way around it on the street then move to lake path and run all the way back the other direction. As pretty as the lake was, I felt like I was losing my mind. I did wave at another Pro when we passed each other on parts of the out and back. These were also the miles that I realized I was going to be beat by a 7 year old. Not that we were really racing but I was torn between being impressed and slightly chagrined.

She was running with her dad- I’m guessing

Miles 10-11 12:00, 11:19
Finally off the lake, I never thought I would be so happy in my life. We were headed back towards downtown and I was lagging. My legs felt good, I just felt really hot. I also died a little inside when I saw the finish line but we turned right.

Miles 12-13 12:12, 11:47
Ok, no I really died inside when I realized there was another out and back…no make that 2 out and backs. I think this realization also slowed me down. I was so over the out and backs. I tried to just keep putting one foot in front of the other. Fittingly enough, Skillet’s “Finish Line” came on with around 1/3 of a mile left to go. And I picked up the pace.

Finish 2:29:03

Fastest half in a year-not sure how I feel about that. Actually my body felt pretty good during the race despite the very flat terrain. I don’t know if I was mentally there. Also I felt really hot- I never checked the humidity but it probably wasn’t my friend. Especially now that I don’t work and run in a beach town. Ha!

While this route was more scenic than my last race in Oakland, the repeated out and backs messed with my head. Boo.

Do you like out and back courses?

Ambassador, BibRave, Race Day, Recap, Run!

2019 Rock n Roll San Diego Recap

This was my third time running Rock n Roll San Diego and I still find it to be an awesome race.

Disclaimer: I received an entry to Rock n Roll San Diego 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!

I had a horrible night of sleep so I was moving a little slowly as I got myself ready for the race. I headed out of my hotel to the shuttle stop around 5:30. Part of the reason I book this hotel is the proximity to the shuttles and the finish line. The lines seem so much longer this year but I was on a bus fairly quickly. Once dropped off I made my way to the BibRave Pro meetup.

📸 Nicole or Mai

Then I did a bad thing. I hadn’t noticed until I was preparing my flat runner the night before but my bib had my corral as 21. Wait, what? I know I’m moving slower than I used to but that didn’t make sense. Which was reinforced when I saw the 2:30 pacers in corral 14. Rock n Roll was enforcing corral assignments this time but I managed to sneak into corral 14.

Miles 1-3: 10:15, 11:07, 11:39
I love that .2 miles into the start there is a guy shouting on a bull horn. Every year. I was feeling rough from the get go. I was running but I knew it wasn’t going to last. I’ve never faded this fast before.

Miles 4-5: 11:34, 11:54
I was slowing, my pace does not show how much walking I was doing. I had nothing in the tank. The Mile 4.5 bar barely drew a smile from me. Then we entered the “Wear Blue” mile. All the signs of fallen military members and American Flags make me realize I should not be complaining. I went to pause my music so I could run the mile in silence when I noticed what was playing. The acoustic version of Papa Roach’s F.E.A.R- Face Everything And Rise. The timing of lyrics was eerie so I let it play.

Miles 6-10: 11:54, 12:41, 11:34, 11:46, 12:03
I knew I was done back in mile 3 and I stopped fighting it. My legs and body felt good, I just had zero energy. None. It was humid but not hot and while the humidity wasn’t as high as last year, my lungs were not having it. Asthma sucks. So I ran when I could and walked the rest. Miles 7 and 10? Lots of walking. A lot. I just tried to enjoy the neighborhoods I was running through, all the people who came out to cheer, and the literal cheerleaders every few miles.

Blurry tunnel selfie 😂

Miles 11-13: 12:39, 11:06, 11:57
There was a new blowup at mile 10 instead of the guitar guy. I love the last 3 miles- there’s a good uphill, amazing downhill and a party tunnel as we head back downtown to the finish. I felt like I picked up the pace but the stats tell a different story. Ha! I had to take a walk break at the bottom of the downhill- say what? I never have to walk after downhills. So in other words- the hundred or so people I just passed now all passed me. 🙂

Finish -2:34:12

My slowest San Diego to date! I am not sure what happened out there- I went in worried about a hurt foot and instead slammed into a wall of exhaustion. I texted a friend after the race and said I had zero get up and go. None. I still love this race though and would recommend it to anyone who asks.

And that brings half #38 to a close.

Ambassador, BibRave, Race Day, Recap, Run!

Holiday Half Race Recap

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??

Mile 13-11:29
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.😛

Finish 2:36:34

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!

BibRave, Race Day, Recap, Run!

Rock N Roll Los Angeles 13.1

Disclaimer: I received an entry into Rock n Roll Los Angeles 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!

Going into LA, I knew it was going to be less race and morning training run.  With the last few weeks of work kicking my tush, I knew it might turn into a stroll around LA instead.

The parking situation from the day before had me super stressed and then I realized that my hotel was further away then I thought so I set a very early alarm for Sunday.  I used Siri and Waze and still ran into road closures but found a spot in a parking garage near the start before 5AM.   I hung out in my car for a bit then headed out to find the start.   There was a short line at the potties so I took advantage, I then headed off to the #werunsocial meetup.

I jumped in corral 9 after the National Anthem and just stayed there.  I didn’t feel like shoving my way up to my corral and I knew I wasn’t going to be fast.

Miles 1-4 9:47, 10:31, 11:11, 11:27
We were off and headed out on the first out and back.  I was actually feeling pretty good which was surprising considering the dense fog and poor air quality warning I had woken up to.  I took a walk break in mile 3 for water and the pavement seemed more slippery than usual at the water stations.  Mile 4 I felt a little fatigued so I went to my run/ walk intervals, it also had the biggest climb on the course.  I like hills but after a week of crap sleep in a hotel- yeah I walked.

Miles 5-6 10:55, 14:19
My little reset mile helped so I picked up the pace for mile 5.  I was feeling good, we were running down Wilshire (?) BLVD and things were going my way.  Then they weren’t.  At 4.8- 1/2 mile past an aid station, my stomach cramped- hard.  I came to a complete stop.  What the hell?? I walked until about 5.4 trying to calm my stomach.  Then it was a slow jog while I prayed for an aid station and a port-a-pottie.  Just before mile 6 there was and thankfully there was no line.

Miles 7-10 10:51, 12:03, 12:10, 11:48
My stomach was ok but not great.  From then on, it was run/ walk.  I was actually running a decent pace but when I walked I was so slow.  Normally I power walk pretty well but my stomach was either run or crawl.  I tried to just enjoy some of the buildings around me, the other runners in costume and major shout out to the Korea Town Running club- their cheering section was awesome.    Oh and zombies on stilts?

Miles 11-13 12:13, 13:07, 11:39
We were on our way back of the biggest out and back.   My stomach was starting to really act up again and trying to ignore it was making me tired.    This was also the first time I’ve seen a sweeper car on a race damn near on top of the last runners.  Kind of a drawback to courses with such long out and backs.  I walked most of mile 12 and 13 before I finally told my stomach it just had to shut up for 1/2 mile and I ran it in.

Finish-2:34:43

Considering I walked 45% and spent 3 minutes in a bathroom mid run- that ain’t bad.  In fact, if my stomach had not been an asshat, this probably would have ended up being my fastest half of the year, instead it was my slowest, haha.   And that is perfectly fine considering how the last 2 weeks went.  Not my best, not my worst, either way I have no problem entering my time into Athlinks while I wait for the official results.

While I did like the course- good hills and buildings- and Rock N Roll always puts on a great race, the parking and the traffic were nuts.  Too many things going on in a small area and I just don’t deal well.

BibRave, Run!, Training

Week 39:Upcoming Races-Rock n Roll San Jose Training Week 11

Upcoming Races-

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

Peek weak redux? More like epic fail.

Like I said in Friday’s post this week was less than stellar.   I was in a funk with no real reason as to why.    I started the week out sick and things just kind of went down hill from there.    We had an employee with a last day on Friday and it’s always sad when the team changes.  On the upside, I finally have a hotel for my work trip coming up in October so I won’t be sleeping in my car, haha.

The plan called for a 6 mile run, 6 mile pace run, 10 mile long run and 3-4 cross training workouts.

Monday- Sick
I felt fine in the morning and had my running gear with me at work.  However things went south around 4:00pm when I suddenly felt nauseous, clammy and like I was running a fever.   I went home and just curled up under a blanket.  It was still hot outside so it was a sign that I really wasn’t feeling well.

Tuesday- Liift4
I still wasn’t feeling well.  I couldn’t focus and everything took so much more effort.  I ran into my uncle during the day and he took one look at me and asked why the hell I went to work.  I’m stupid??  I felt like a total sloth so I dragged my way through a Liift4 workout in the late evening.  I did feel a little better after.

Wednesday-1.2 miles
Not what I intended.  I planned to attempt 5-6 pace-ish miles around the lake path but the path had other plans.  Creeper alert!  Both could have been false alarms but my #1 rule is Be Paranoid.   The first creeper was a windowless van parked on the path.  Ummm, why?  Next up was a gold Ford Fusion that slowed as it passed me, then drove in front of me.   When it came back for a second, slower pass, I was done -I’m out.  I’ll run another day.

Thursday- 3 miles
My leg was hurting.  I was stupid and sat in my chair this week- why do I keep doing that- and it aggravates my right leg in a bad way.  I toughed out 3 miles but managed to find a decent, easy pace actually.  I knew more would probably be stupid judging by how the leg felt though.

Friday- Nothing
I just wanted to stay in bed all day but I went to work.  I did bring back the desk chair instead of my stool though.

She had the right idea

Saturday-Nothing
And I mean nothing.  I set my alarm to get in my long run but when it came time to run I was so not feeling it.  In fact I was feeling like being a sloth.  So I did.  The upcoming month of October is looking to be crazy busy and this was my last weekend before things get crazy.  So, I did the bare minimum.  I ran 2 errands and I napped.

Sunday- 6.35 miles
I should have napped more.  I kept putting off this run because I really didn’t want to run.  I wanted to be lazy but I told myself that was stupid.   So I headed out for a run.   Why?  It was miserable.  It was too warm, I wasn’t into it and my leg started to hurt towards the end.  I walked a lot.   I was done.  I just looped and headed back to the car.   I should have just skipped it.  My pace wasn’t completely horrible- it was actually near marathon long run pace so I guess I have made some improvements in the last few weeks if I tanked that badly but it doesn’t look like it.

10.56 miles for the week.  Yay. And with that it’s race week.

How was your week?