Tent City Half Marathon Recap

This may be the latest I’ve ever finished a race recap.

I’ve been talking about half marathon #30 since October but never made it work, finally I stopped talking and just signed up for a race the same day my training plan called for 19 miles.  I figured 13 supported miles with other runners followed by 6 solo miles was better than 19 lonely miles.

Tent City is in it’s first year and that generally makes me leery of races.  It offered a full, half, 10k, 5k and None run.  Packet pick up was a sure sign that it was a first time, small town race- a folding table next to an open van with the shirts and numbers.  Did I mention it was in front of a creepy abandoned building?😜

Ok, maybe not so abandoned.  The race was a fundraiser for the Printery Foundation which is working to restore the Printery building which is over 100 years old.  But until then I think it looks kind of haunted.   Call the Winchester brothers.  Did I mention this was also the start line?   In the dark.

The race started at the crack of dawn in the cold and dark.   Seriously, the sun hadn’t risen and it was 34*.   Dude, what??? I had my fleece vest from the week before and debated wearing it, I mean 13 miles…I’d warm up right???  I stayed in the car until the last possible moment before heading to the start line to find a port-a-pottie.  Luckily I had thought ahead and brought a Knuckle Light with me as the bathrooms were completely dark.   I was so cold.  Luckily, the announcer said a few words, the National Anthem was sung and we were off.

Miles 1-3 10:16, 10:46, 12:04  I wasn’t planning on racing this- it was more a training run so I was going to happy with anything around 2:24-2:30 overall.  The first mile looped us around numerous downtown city blocks before heading out onto the highway out of town.   I was kind of surprised when I figured out what highway we were on, we were running on the closed shoulder while the lanes were open.  We crossed a bridge and I was wondering where the first mile marker was.  Checked my watch and saw that we were past a mile so I figured I missed it.     But I never saw mile 2 or mile 3… ok, so there are no mile markers. Ummm?   I was feeling an odd tingling in my backside during mile 3- it was more that I felt like the zipper to the pocket on my pants was super cold- almost too cold but I ignored it and it went away.  Probably shouldn’t have.

Miles 4-7 11:37, 10:43, 12:22, 11:52  I was slowing for no apparent reason but the reality is that I actually had no idea.  I was trying not to pay attention to my watch as this was a training run.  I had to look at it occasionally as the lack of mile markers was actually frustrating.  I wanted some idea of where I was.  Plus the course was an out and back so I knew the turn around had to come at some point but it seemed too far out.  I was enjoying the scenery of the back road we were now on but once again, it wasn’t the best road for runners.  We now had an entire lane to ourselves but drivers tend to treat this road like a speedway and they weren’t slowing even with the cones.   They were down to one lane and buzzing around us upwards of 40mph.

Miles 8-11 11:56, 12:07, 12:20, 12:27 The turn around!  Yay!  And I had finally realized that I was moving slower than I thought I was.  What was going on?  Wait, I can’t feel my butt!  Or my quads and thighs really.  What the hell?  How long had I been numb?  Seriously? Like I smacked myself in the butt and couldn’t feel it.   So I tried it again, same thing.  I couldn’t really feel the effort my legs were putting in or lack thereof.  🤣  It wasn’t that cold- wth?  My fleece vest had kind of frosted over though, haha.  There was a person out there in a tank!  Apparently I have zero tolerance for the cold these days.

Miles 12-13 11:58, 11:37  Back to the highway and my backside was finally starting to warm up.  But only in patches, haha and those sections were just itching.  Oh for crying out loud.  As we came back into town, I could see the finish line at the park (different than the start) but instead of going straight to it we had to go around the block the long way.

Finish-2:33:51

Yes, that’s fidget spinner for a medal

Not horribly off my long run pace goal and I learned that I really need to practice running in cold weather.  Nah.  After getting my medal, it was time to join the party in the park.  There was yoga, food tents, beer tents, cupcake tents, local businesses and one of those tables with computers that prints your results.  I’ve never had one of those!  It was barely 9AM, there was no way I was drinking a beer but I wasn’t passing up a free cupcake.  😀

For a first time race, they did a decent job, they have room for improvement but it’s a race I would run again.  Just move the dang start time back.   And maybe put up a few more road blocks.

Big Sur Marathon Training-Week 8

Or the one where I almost got mowed down by a car.

Even before that though, this week wasn’t going so well.   Between the less than helpful test results, a busy week at work, a sudden cold weather snap and a bout with the stomach flu, I watched a lot of Netflix.

Monday- Rest  I planned on running, I mean a day off from work meant a perfect day for running right?  Yet somehow, between cleaning my car, inside and out- it was so dirty, getting my tires rotated and balanced and then my doctor’s appointment to get my test results, I just never made the time.  Plus it was super windy and cold.

Tuesday- Rest I never take my running gear on the Tuesdays after 3 day weekends knowing that work is likely to be crazy busy.  Plus I knew we were down 2 people so I was calling it being prepared.  It actually wasn’t anywhere near what I thought so I probably could have brought my gear.

Wednesday- Rest  I felt off, kind of moody, odd.  I brought my gym bag into the building to change but just wasn’t feeling it.  I couldn’t figure out why.

Thursday- Sick Ok, maybe that was it.  I didn’t even make it through the full day at work.  I was spending more time running to the bathroom than I was working.  Sorry, TMI.  So instead of running I spent most of the day resting in my chair and binging Netflix.  Hello, 100.

Friday- Rest I made it to work but was still feeling off, at this point was just hoping I would get in my weekend runs like planned.

Saturday- 7 miles I started the morning by filling in as a coach for the JV boys tennis team for an away match.  Yeah, that was interesting.  I had 4 boys show up, the opposing team had 19.   The opposing team was locked out f their own courts so they were literally climbing fences to get us tennis balls.  😛

I headed out for my run late in the afternoon.  After having so many unplanned days off in a row, I admit I was a little concerned how things would go.  However it was a pretty good run.  I was feeling decent so I decided to throw in some hills.  Apparently not enough because at the end of 7 miles I had only hit 600 ft in elevation gain.

Sunday- 15 miles Longest run since last marathon training cycle.   My side was hurting in the morning so I slept a little longer and headed out for my run in the afternoon.   I had a route planned and I was planning on taking it slow and easy considering it had been a rough week.  The first 1/3 felt pretty good but I told myself not to celebrate yet as I still had a long way to go.  The second third was also the warmest section and I slowed a bit as well as had a stand-off with an off leash dog.  I am not sure who was more alarmed by who.

Things went south around mile 10.  I was crossing the street to get to the park with the bathrooms.  I checked all 3 ways (T intersection) for oncoming traffic, I had reflective gear and I was paying attention.  I DID EVERYTHING RIGHT!  Yet 2/3 of the way across the street, this blue car came flying out of nowhere speeding towards me, blew through the stop sign, the cross walk and squealed it’s tires out into oncoming traffic.  WTF?! I was seriously close enough to the car to touch it.

Here’s where I reacted wrong.  After avoiding getting mowed down by the crazy, oblivious driver I looked around wondering if anyone else had seen that while cursing and yelling out loud.  Before remembering I was still in the cross walk and therefore still in street.  Move, stupid!

I had 5 more intersections and stop lights to get through on the busy side of town before I was back in the neighborhoods and side streets I run all the time.   Once I was in calmer streets it was like all the adrenaline left my body and everything cramped and my brain caught up to me about the near miss.   The last mile or so home were kind of rough but I could tell it was more emotional than mileage driven if that makes sense.

22 miles for the week.  The weekend rescued the week but things were a little rough this week.  That said, I am ok with the mileage that I did pull off.

How was your week?

Week 52-And a cold

And just like 52 weeks have gone by and bring 2017 to close.

And the calendar did me a solid and worked out perfectly… unlike last year.

I had my second PT appointment and this time they had me try lumbar traction.  Then all laughed at the expression of fear on my face as they described it.  It really wasn’t that bad.

Last week was a little rough, I felt a little ragged around the edges.   I was looking forward to the 3 day weekend- not for the New Year’s parties but more for the opportunity to sleep.   Truth- I just barely managed to stay awake through midnight on New Year’s Eve but I still managed to miss the ball drop on TV.  Oops.

Monday- Christmas  And I was about as active as a lump on a log.

Tuesday- Rest/ PT Exercises I knew work was likely to be busy after the 3 day weekend and oh boy was I right.

Wednesday- Missed Run  Work was exhausting and I was tired and cranky so instead of running I just headed home.  Which might have been fate telling me something- maybe that’s dramatic but barely moments after picking my mom up to go to dinner, we were driving down the street to see flames literally shooting out of the top of an apartment building. Then it hit the power lines.  I pulled over while my mom called 911 and jumped out and stood with the homeowner, we asked if anyone else was inside or if there were any pets.  I then just got my car out of the way and stayed out of the way while we waited for the fire department and PD to show up.  It was definitely not how I thought the night was going to go.

Thursday- Rest/PT exercises Work this week just kicked my butt.  Plus I was denial that I was sick.  If I ignored the sore throat and the coughing, that meant they weren’t real right?  Despite the fact I’d fallen asleep in my chair almost every night.   I missed a dinner with old high school friends because I didn’t want to get anyone sick, so I wasn’t being completely stupid.

Friday-  Rest  More of the same.  This time I missed a dinner with a coworker who was leaving another location.  Boo.  Also fell asleep in my chair again.

Saturday- 3.1 miles  After sleeping in, I headed out for what I figured was going to be an afternoon slog.  Except I was moving way faster than I should have been for only having run once last week and being sick this week.  Legs what are you doing?   I had no business seeing miles in the 10 minute range and my lungs let me know so I ended up take a break to sit on a wall at one point.

Sunday- 4 miles Once again I headed out expecting a slow run and once again my legs and lungs were at war.   My legs just wanted to go! But my lungs were not quite on board.  It was better than the day before though.  Other than a little wheezing, this 4 miles felt pretty good.

7.1 miles for the week.  Better than last week.  Still super low but I’m not mad.  The last week of the year always throws me a curve ball and this was no exception.

How was your week?

Week 21- Trucking On

Upcoming Races:

  • Rock N Roll San Diego 13.1-June 4

This week was pretty good.  My brain felt fried for part of it but eh, that happens sometimes right?  I ran, I ate yummy food, I read and I tried to sleep.   I had a really bad moment at work one day where I got a little frustrated with a situation but I dug myself out of that mood and moved on.    Not to say it won’t happen again but I got past it for last week.  And my coworker made me laugh hysterically- a customer asks her “so, any big plans for the 3 day weekend”.  Her very calm, almost bored response was “not really, just having a baby’.   I damn near spit out my water.  I’ll miss her sense of humor while she’s on leave. 😛


Monday- 3.5 Miles  Holy tight calves, batman. Ouch.  I headed to the lake after work to get in a few miles and I was feeling good.  Until I started running that is.  My calves were so tight, I felt like they were going to rip.   I crawled these miles and stopped to stretch about every 1/2 mile.  Nothing seemed to help.  I called it after 3 laps of the lake.  They weren’t loosening up and it wasn’t worth risking an injury for more miles.

Tuesday- Rest  After the day before I was taking time to rest the legs.  I made sure that I foam rolled that evening though.   It was a long day at work with an early morning meeting so my brain was kind of fried so I just vegged that evening.


Wednesday-3.1 miles I had planned for running more in the morning but the weather had turned on me by the evening.  I had packed shorts and a tank which was fine for Monday but today the weather barely hit 60 and the winds were gusting up to 25mph.   Luckily I had an old race shirt in my emergency stash of clothes so I layered that over my tank but my ears were still cold.  I made it to the turn around for 5K before I decided to bail.  I hate cold ears.  Cold ears turn me into a giant baby.  I need to make sure I keep a Buff in my bag for rare days like this.   My legs felt ok, if I could have warmed up my ears I think I would have kept running.


Thursday- 2.5 miles Cold and misty miles.  Seriously, weather just pick one and stick with it!  I was just better this time though- capris, long sleeves and my Buff.   My legs were feeling fussy though so I kept the run short.  I just did 2 laps of the lake before stretching it out.    I figured out part of my problem may have been that my shoes were tied too loose.  I was stretching on the parallel bars and my right shoe popped right off!  Oops.    I was also to meet someone I’ve been following on IG for the last year.  We’ve run a bunch of local races at the same time but I’m slow and she’s fast so we’ve never met in real life.  🙂

Friday- Rest  It was an open to close kind of day.  I planned on riding the bike when I got home but yeah that didn’t happen.  Slacker.

Saturday- Rest I went to SLO for some shopping with my mother.  I feel like we walked miles.  We didn’t but that’s how I felt.  I may have spent more than I had planned.   Which I had planned to spend zero but that never seems to work, does it?  I meant to ride the bike that evening when I got home but I didn’t.  I also briefly considered trying for my long late that evening but I was exhausted.   That seems to be my current state.  I discovered that Hulu has Eli Stone and that is how I spent my evening.


Sunday- 8 mile run, 5 mile bike  I had planned for 10 miles as my last long run before Rock n Roll Diego.   However I really didn’t want to get out of bed that morning.   I pushed it later then I should have.   The plan was to run 10 miles, have my mother pick me then we were going to lunch.   I left later then planned and it was warmer then I wanted it to be.  As I passed the cemetery, I paused and thanked all those that had served.  There were a lot of flags on the graves.

While the first 5 miles were pretty good, I slammed into a wall in mile 6.  My pulse was jumping and I was too warm.  It was also uphill.  I pretty much walked all of it.   I decided to just run 8 and spend some more time stretching before she met me.  Plus those last 3 miles were slow so they took me longer than planned.  😐   I actually ran more than 8 too, at some point my Garmin paused and it took me a while to figure it out.  Boo.  Later that evening I hopped on the bike just to get some miles in before dinner- the family bbq’ed on Sunday- once again, I really need to find my fan.

17.1 miles run, 5 miles biked.  Another week of 5 workouts.  Can I keep this up?  Maybe get to 6 or 7?  How about adding in some strength workout?  Woah, that’s crazy talk for this Slacker.  We’ll see how it goes.  Especially since this is a race week so I shouldn’t be doing anything too radical during it.  That wouldn’t be very smart of me, right?

Oh an I may have bought a shiny new Garmin.

How was your weekend?

Do anything fun?

Anyone make any impulse purchases?

 

2017 Livermore Half Marathon Recap

Disclaimer: I received an entry into Livermore 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!

All right, if you’ve been reading me whine for the past week you know I went into this race sick.   I was questioning my sanity for running it and my ability to finish it.   As was my mother.  😛


Race morning dawned after a less then stellar night of sleep but isn’t that to be expected before races?   The forecast had changed to just overcast and low 40’s and while I was thankful for the lack of rain I knew that was going to feel cold to me.  So I layered up.  Seriously.  Capri’s over compression socks, a tank with a long sleeve shirt over it, then my rain jacket.  A Buff around my neck and another Buff around my head to cover my ears with my hat over that.     My mom drove me to the start and dropped me off.

I made my way to the start line and suddenly panicked.  I forgot my bib!  Somehow I had forgotten to pin my bib on.  It was still in the car.  Thankfully my mother had decided that parking was a nightmare (we were in a dirt lot without specific spots which was very tricky in the dark) so she was just going to nap while I ran.  I hauled butt back to the car to get my bib.  Once that crisis was averted I headed back to the start line where I ended up meeting up with Laura from running4thereason.com, another Bibrave Pro.   We chatted while waiting for the race to start.  10 minutes after 7 and we were off!

My plan was to run until I got tired, walk, then repeat until the finish line.  I figured I would walk every hill and just do whatever my lungs wanted to do and just go from there.

Miles 1-3 10:24, 10:40, 10:22

The first 3 miles were through city streets and I was moving a hell of a lot faster than I thought I would be.   Hmmm.   I like low key city streets so I was enjoying the vibe and just letting my feet do what they wanted.  I skipped the first aid station at mile 2 because it was just too crowded.   The 5K was also running along side us for a bit so that was interesting.  A couple other runners and I were cracking jokes that we were going to “get lost” and turn around with the 5K’ers.   😛  A little before mile 3 I came up behind the 2:30 pacers… um, what?  I knew I was moving way faster then that so I couldn’t figure out how they had gotten that far ahead of me.  Then I turned my headphones on and told myself to get over it.

The bridges moved when you ran over them!

Miles 4-6 11:11, 11:29, 11:41

I loved these miles and hated them at the same time.  Just past mile 4 we went from running the streets into a paved path in a park.  Heaven.  I want this path in my town now.   Paved blacktop with nature on both sides, a little stream running thanks to all the rain?  It was awesome.  A downside was that the path narrowed so it was easy to get roadblocked so there was lots of bobbing and weaving going on in these miles.  I ran in the dirt along the path a lot.  But again, that’s one of my favorite things so this should have been my favorite part.  What made it so rough was that just past mile 4 my stomach cramped, bad.   Like, I need a bathroom now, bad.  And of course, the next bathroom wasn’t until the aid station at mile 6ish. 😂😂 So instead of walking because I was tired, I walked when I cramped and ran when it eased, and repeat.   That kind of messed with my head.  Note to self- never eat Five Guys before a race ever again.


Miles- 7-9 11:31, 11:47, 13:02

Just past mile 6 and we were out of the park and back on the street.  The bathroom line was like 20+ people long and the cramping had eased so I figured as long as I went slow I would probably be ok.   My lungs were starting to protest and I was super congested.  I admit I did something I have never done in view of others before- I spit.  I did it more than once this race. I felt so bad but I had to!  I also ripped off a few choice words when a police car leading a trail of cars on the other side of the road let off a single screeching chirp.  I about jumped out of my skin.   2 people next to me also had some colorful words to share.   Mile 9 saw the only 2 real hills of the race.  I walked them.  At the top of the first was a water station that also had a paramedic and a fire truck- it was a small hill!  I got jammed up the water station.  I went to throw my water cup in the trash and a woman put herself in front of me to eat her Gu and a woman came up right behind me to drink water.  It was like a hug with random strangers and I couldn’t move.  Let me out!  It took me another 30’ish seconds to get myself out of the stranger sandwich and on my way.  Grrr.   We were leaving the road and entering another park with a paved path.   Seriously, I wanted this one in my town too.  My lungs were protesting as we hit the second hill, they were so not happy.


Miles 10-12 11:00, 11:51, 11:14

We were still in the park so I was running in the dirt every chance I got.    I love dirt.  Plus my legs appreciated the change in terrain.  They were actually feeling pretty good considering how little elevation this course had.   The 2:30 pacers had caught up to me and passed me, left me in the dust really.  I started to feel discouraged but told myself to get over it, I was already doing better than I thought I would, there was no sense making myself sicker just to meet some arbitrary “sick” finish time.  I just told myself to enjoy the scenery and try to calm my lungs down.   Mile 11 brought us back into town through a smaller park before we were back on city streets for the last mile.

Mile 13 12:16

Holy asthma city.  My lungs were done.  Between my cold and my asthma, I was fighting an asthma attack.  I walked so much of the last mile.  I was wheezing and coughing and gasping and probably looked like a hot mess.  Crowd support really picked up for the last mile and so many people were cheering.   I heard “come on girl in orange run! You’re so close!”  Don’t you see I’m trying!?!?!?!  I rounded a corner and there it was- the finish line!

Finish 2:30:15

Haha, this pic makes me laugh now😂

I crossed the line and was handed my medal.  I saw my mom fairly quickly outside the fence and went to say hi.  She took one look at my face and said “you chose to do this”.  Haha, thanks mom.😛    I then wandered down the finishers chute and collected my wine glass, chocolate milk and banana.  I was also able to refill my water bottle.  Once I stopped moving and was able to chill for a moment, my lungs calmed down a bit.


All in all this a great course.  I liked all the scenery and the varied paths.   I wish it had a few more hills.  I think another hill or 2 may have helped me a bit, this course was fairly flat.  So if flat is your jam, you could totally set a PR on this course.   And hey I ended up hitting my arbitrary sick time anyways- who knew?!

Half marathon #23 in the books.  🙂