Tag: Events

Wild Run 5K recap

I hope everyone had a good 4th of July!

Wild Run 5K brought a couple of firsts for me. One was a rare opportunity due to the race size and something I never thought would happen. What I am most proud of was that I ran a smart race from start to finish-negative splits and all.

Pre-race with mom
Pre-race with mom

Choosing the Wild Run 5k, I knew it was going to be a smaller race and I was a little leery considering the past experiences that I had with races put on by this gym. However, I was pleasantly surprised-for the most part. Packet pick up was a breeze on Thursday. Parking was in the zoo parking lot so super simple. Previous races by this gym had a spray painted starting line, a megaphone start, and an orange cone finish line. So I was impressed to see tents set up, an emcee leading a warm up and a designated start. Granted it was pop-up tent but still a huge improvement. There were about 100 runners for the 10k and 5K combined. A little smaller than even I was previously thinking. The only glitch I saw prior to the race was the start time. I had confirmed that the start time for the 5K was 8:10 but the schedule on the board said 8:30. Umm? Turns out 8:10 was correct.IMG_5331

It was go time and we were off. After looking at the map the previous night, I saw that the first ½ mile of the race had a hill and the last ¾ of a mile were on the lake path that I run. Everything in between was a mystery but for the most part was pretty flat.   I started off in the middle of the pack like I always do. We ran through the parking lot to the lot of the baseball field nearby and then up the street. We were still running in a pack when we hit the hill.   It wasn’t the elevation, less 100 ft., but it was short and vertical.   I walked near the top. .3 miles in and I was walking, waah. It was short, about 20 seconds and then I was running again.   I pulled away from the pack and there were only a couple people in front of me. I figured that wouldn’t last long so I may as well enjoy it. After that small hill, it was flat, yay! My watch buzzed at mile 1 -9:37. Ouch, I knew I wasn’t in top shape speed wise, but I was hoping for better than that. I knew I could pick it up so I that is what I tried to do. I kept a guy pushing stroller in my sights. He seemed super comfortable at that pace so I knew I probably couldn’t catch him so I tried to always be able to see him.  IMG_5374

I heard someone coming up behind me and that gave me the incentive to run faster. They fell back and I kept going. Rounding a corner I found the only water station but I didn’t need it. I managed to pass a guy in blue shirt here. I just kept watching stroller guy. We went right and there were some rolling hills. The elevation was almost negligible it was just that there was like 6 of them in a row. Stroller guy got farther away. No! So I picked it up again. Mile 2-9:00.   A little more street and we were back to the lake path. I knew the path well so I was hoping to pick it up but I wasn’t going to look at my watch again. This was also where I started to realize that no one had passed me yet, I also hadn’t seen another woman since the start of the race. As I was coming up on one of the bridges on the trail, a biker rode past me and then the 10K leader thundered past.   I got hung up right before the bridge, 2 women and 4 dogs were in the path. I had to walk the little bridge until I got around them.   Then I had like .3 of a mile to go. My goal was to finish strong and not let anyone pass me.   Usually I am dragging and breathing hard by the end of a 5K but I felt like I had the energy for a final kick, so I kicked. Mile 3- 8:30.

Finish time -27:48

I forgot to stop the Garmin!!
I forgot to stop the Garmin!!

Hot damn, that’s a new PR! Not by much, but it still counts.   Here’s where it got really interesting. I was the first female 5K finisher. What?!   Seriously?   How is that possible? Another woman finished about a minute behind me. She looked hardcore, how did I pull this off? I was super excited and a little bit in shock. I realize that it’s because it was such a small race but it’s still a huge pick me up after I had a few rough races.

not sure what I am doing here
Post finish- not sure what I am doing here

While waiting for the awards ceremony, we got to cheer on the other runners coming in.   There were people finishing for the 10K, 5K and 1 mile.   The kids running were so adorable.   But hands down the coolest finisher was an 85 year old woman with a walker. She completed the 1 mile course. Talk about awesome.

woo hoo!
woo hoo!

This is also where they kind of fell apart. They were having computer issues so the awards were delayed; so delayed that quite a few people went home. When they finally started announcing, there were so few people there. The awards were for 1-3 male and female for each race. When they announced my name they also announced my time as 24:48. Ha! I wish!IMG_5379

Even with it’s little issues, it was a good race and a fun morning.  Well outside of one thing.  For whatever reasons, my iPhone had a little glitch. I ran the entire 5K with one song playing repeatedly.  27 minutes of Wrecking Ball over and over and over.  I deserve props for not chucking my phone.  I came pretty close.  🙂

How was your weekend?

Did you have good 4th?




Choose My Next Race

Before we move on to the main event, this happened on Thursday and I almost missed it!  anniversary

If you want to read my very first newbie post, you can here.

I am a person who likes to register as close to race date as possible.  That way I know that I am going to follow though and not just throw my money away.  Yes, 90% of the races I run benefit some form of charity but still I like to actually run them.   This time I have left it even later than normal so I am calling on you to help me out.  🙂

I have 2 options for a 5k on July 4th-

**Neither race offers finisher medals and I have left it so late that I doubt I will get a shirt either, but both do benefit a charity.

Option 1–  Pozo 5K- my original choice


Touted as a flat and picturesque out and back course, this is its 22nd year.   It also has the steeper price and farthest drive.   Small field about 200 runners.  It offers raffles prizes and breakfast. Packets have to be picked up on race day.  It benefits a local charity that helps family with sick or injured children.

I had originally planned on trying for a PR at this race but I don’t feel like I am in the shape to do so.  According to last years race results, the slowest time was 40 minutes.  Slowest.   Fastest was 14 minutes.  Well crap, I don’t want to embarrass myself.    Yes, that’s my ego talking.

Option 2– Wild Run 5K


Somewhat flat and only 15 minutes away.  Less expensive but not by much.   Again, small field.  This race benefits the local zoo.  Which I run past every time I run at the lake path.  Added bonus- part of this race is on the lake path so I am familiar with it.    This offers packet pick up the day before, which is nice.

Downside to this is that is put on by a local gym.  Why does this make me nervous?  I have run 2 races put on by them in years past and was less than impressed with the organization.    However that was years ago and a different location.  They could be better now.   I feel like this is more my speed right now but feel like I am wimping out of the other.  In a completely girly, unimportant way, I have the perfect shirt to wear for this race.  🙂

So help me choose!  I have to register by tomorrow for Pozo but have a little time for the Wild Run.

What do you think?

Hope you are having a good weekend!

Running Ahead

When 2013 started I had a few running goals that I mostly kept to myself.   I knew I had at least 2 half marathons in the year to come and by City to Sea in October I was hoping to break 2:15:00.  That would be 11 minutes off City to Sea of 2012, so I was a little nervous.  I also wanted to break 30:00 for a 5K again, just to make sure that the first time wasn’t a fluke just because it was the HOB fun run.   I figured it may have just been the adrenaline stemming from the literally almost 100 people I knew there, it’s a very popular local event.  Most races, I only know 1 or 2 other people, less stress. 🙂  In 2013, I wanted to get over the horrible mental block I had with 10K’s, I had only run 1 but I hated it so much, it was 2 years before I ran another.  Give me half marathon any day.   I was also aiming for 12 races through out the year.

2013 also began with a promotion and job location change.  I now commuted every day.  On top of that, work was insanely busy.  We were going through a merger, so most days including the commute were over 12 hour days.  I wasn’t getting home until after 7, and then I was so tired I usually just crashed.   This went on for a few months.  Running took a backseat and I became a weekend runner.   😦   My first 2 races of the year were in that time period as well.  A 5K in February and the Wine Country 1/2 in March.

Also the last time I had my natural hair color, ha!!
Also the last time I had my natural hair color, ha!!

I went into Wine Country feeling seriously under trained.  I had run this half twice before so I knew the course well.  I was hoping to finish near 2:25:00, so only a minute faster than 2012’s City to Sea.  Then 3 minutes to the starting gun they announced a last minute course change.   The out and back portion would be shorter to accommodate adding a crazy hill at the end, at mile 12.4.  Seriously?!   I figured I would run as much as I could and walk when I needed to.  I won’t lie, I walked that entire damn hill and some after that, cursing in my head the whole way up.  The shocker was that I crossed the finish line at 2:14:04.  Ummm, how now?   I still have no idea where that came from.   I had to double check Nike, the official time and the starting clock, I was in disbelief.  But then I was like, what now?  I wasn’t sure I could get faster.  So in June, I started Slacker Runner (thanks for joining me!), partially to hold myself accountable and to find motivation in all your stories as well (which are amazing, by the way).  And to stop driving my coworkers crazy with running talk.

In June, I also ran my first 10K in 2 years and it didn’t suck!!!  In fact, I ran another in July and loved it.   As for 12 races, I ran in 11 events but 12 races.  I am not sure how to count that.  🙂   And I finished City to Sea Half in 2:05:56.  I had discovered this great path at a park in the town halfway between home and work.   It helped with sticking to my training plan and I think that helped with my overall pace. I can’t wait to get back to it in the spring!

So now we are heading into 2014 and where do I go from here?  I am putting my goals in writing this year, so let’s do this!

5K- Finish under 27:00

10K- Finish under 54:00

Half marathon- Break under 2:00:00 in the first half of the year. If I do– see how close I can get to 1:50:00 by City to the Sea 2014. (yikes!)


So, in order to do that I need races!!!!  I am debating joining the 14 in 2014 (but more on that later). I generally plan my races only a quarter ahead and most of the time it also comes down to finances 😦   So for the beginning of the year, I am thinking-

Feb 1- Super Fun Run 5K
Feb 15- Buzz 1/2 Marathon
March 23- Wine Country 1/2 marathon ( dang hill!!!)
April 27- SLO 1/2 Marathon

So now I need to get moving, get running!!!  That first 1/2 marathon is less than 2 months away.  Which is making me regret finishing my Christmas shopping tonight instead of running, oops.

To everyone who has their race year mapped out, you seriously impress me.

Anyone have a goal race in the first half of the year?

Everyone ready for Christmas?

In the home stretch…

The final countdown has begun!!!

countdown clock

I am torn between being super excited and freaking out.  It happens before every big race, that feeling of “oh what have I taken on?”.  But I can’t wait!  Due to the previously mentioned dream, I may be setting 6 alarms but I am still excited!

Judging from what I have been reading on everyone’s blogs, I am not the only one with a big race this Sunday!   So it looks like October 13 is a good day to race.  Good luck to everyone who is running!  Bring it on! 🙂


Tuesday was volleyball night and we won!  Ok, only one match, but that is better than none!  I still haven’t picked up new volleyball shoes but I managed to get last season’s shoes workable.  They had been turned in gardening shoes, oops!  So a little water to rinse them off and a borrowed pocket knife and I had some traction; no more slipping and sliding all over the floor.   We won our first match in 2 games and had a little down time before the second.  The thing that frustrates me about the team is that when we lose, we aren’t being beaten.  We are making unforced errors that cost us too many points.  We have the skill but we just can’t seem to close.    Guess that provides the justification for our team name of “Aimless”.

Today, I thought I was going to have to drop my 2nd work school course but a last minute change yesterday meant school was back on.  I do not understand why it takes me 30 minutes to go 17 miles.  From one town to another and 10 of those miles are highway!  And I do not drive slowly.  Class ran late but that was ok as I like to space out my runs during race week. 2 days between each run, so, I ran Monday and I will get in some miles tomorrow, then race day on Sunday!!!! 🙂

I may try to do an easy 2 either on the treadmill or at the track on Saturday, but not likely.   I plan to drive down and pick up my race packet and shirt and do a bit of shopping that day.  I would rather spend the gas money and go down twice than have to stress about picking the packet up on race day.   Plus I am kind of OCD and I like to get all my gear together the night before.  This way I don’t have to think about it race morning.   I can worry about other things.


Like how crappy race photos turn out!  The race photographer sent an email tonight saying there will be 7 photographers on the course along with 2-3 people filming.   Great, more cranky looking pictures.  Like this one from the 10K I just ran-


Come on, really?
Come on, really?

And seriously what kind of lens does he use?  Everyone looks very stout, even the tallest skinniest of people.  Oh and the course? It was flat, like pancake flat-

Where did those slopes come from?
(Photos by Brian P Lawler)

So here’s to hoping this next photographer uses different filters and I get one I may actually want to pay for.


Hope everyone made it through Wednesday and is having a good week!!


Anyone else with OCD tendencies?

Heat = Lazy Runner

So my neck of the woods has just come off of an excessive heat warning.  Perfect for running, right?

Five days of temperatures above 110 makes it really easy to be a slacker runner.   It was so unbearably hot that even my comfy chair was a no go.  Felt like a dang sauna for your backside, ugh.  To make matters worse, I got sick last Friday.  Seriously, who gets the flu in the summer?  My body couldn’t decide if it was shivering with the chills or melting from the heat.

After the lovely knockout of heat and flu, I was forced to run even less than a slacker like me likes to.   Being a commuter as well as inherently lazy makes running in the morning and avoiding the heat highly unlikely for me, I like sleep!    With the drop in training and lingering icky feeling, I was forced to postpone a race that I had planned to complete on July 4th.  This totally bites as I was hoping for a new 5k PR there:(.  I know the course really well and was very optimistic.    Cue inner scream.

I did manage to go for a run this evening after work; if 2.5 miles counts as a run.  Since I couldn’t do the race tomorrow, I did the course tonight instead.   Turned out to be a hotter 86 than I felt ready for.   It was almost 7:00 PM for crying out loud.  I actually maintained a decent pace throughout the run but just felt so sluggish.  I have a 10k a week from Saturday so I need to get it in gear!  Less slacker, more of a runner!

Tomorrow is actually supposed to be below 100, so I am aiming for a good 5 mile run at the local track.  Here’s to hoping for a good pace, good overall run followed by some good 4th of July fun!

And maybe after all that, I can get back to the comfy chair.

Happy 4th of July!!