Tag: half marathon

On the Calendar

Let’s talk races.

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Marin Endurance Festival to review 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 may be barely running but my race schedule says something different. I have 3 races in the next 5 weeks. 3! 5 weeks! Two of them are half marathons! All 3 have trail! 2 have pretty good climbs but all 3 have dirt! I love dirt!

First up is a 10K down in Agua Dulce that I love but it will kick my butt. It’s hard. Third up is a half marathon down in the desert… at night. I’ve been looking forward to it for years but I am trying to not get too excited as I may have puppy care problems. I have a back up plan for that though, I will be bummed but it’s life, right?

However, let’s talk about race#2! I’m heading north for the Marin Endurance Festival on Halloween weekend. There is so much going on that weekend. Saturday is the triathlon and duathlon events. I almost want to find a bike! But let’s be real, I wasn’t good at riding a bike when I was a kid, I really wouldn’t be now. I am disaster prone enough on my own.

Sunday is for the running. A half, a 10k and a 5k. All the fun kicks off at McNear’s Beach. The race website says there are 7 miles road and 6ish trail. So my big question now- what kind of shoes do I wear? Seriously, I am not joking- trail or road? I need to recon this trail.

What are your future race plans?

Oh, and if you want to join, you can save with code BRPRO10.

And seriously, what kind of shoes?

Chasing It- Santa Rosa Half Marathon

Don’t flame out, don’t flame out, don’t flame out. On repeat in my head for 4.5 miles.

Disclaimer: I received an entry into the Santa Rosa Half Marathon to review 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 morning dawned all too early but then don’t they all. Plus I had now confirmed that the GI disaster that was Napa Valley was not a one off, ate at the same chain the night before Santa Rosa and same issues. However this time, I was prepared with both my meds and lots of Pepto. Fingers crossed.

The race started right at 7:30 with corral A going first and Corral B a few moments later. I was in B. I had very low expectations going into this race, both due to my lack of training and the weather circumstances. Smoke in the air and a very warm morning.

Mile 1, I went out too fast but no real shock there. Well, the 12:40 was kind of a surprise as I rarely see 12’s these days. I started interspersing walk breaks on my 30/50 schedule and just kept trucking. I was carrying electrolytes and knew I was taking water at every water stop. Mile 2 dropped me back into the 13’s which made sense as I already felt tired, ha!

Then things got wierd. I was moving along doing my thing, taking water, taking pictures of the course, listening to music but somehow gaining on the 2:50 pacer. What was going on?? Miles 3-5 saw a 12:59, 12:33, and 12:46.

Mile 5 also saw another feat. I caught up to the 2:50 pacers and then dropped them. Don’t get cocky, don’t get cocky, just keep going. We had hit a dirt, gravel part of the trail and I was loving it. It was warming up but there good tree cover. Mile 6- 12:39.

I was entering unknown territory in a few ways now. I was moving faster than I have in months, now farther than the distance I had run since May and now past the longest distance I had run in these running shoes.

I was also tiring but again, that made sense. I was slowing down but I’d also started to think I really could hold onto a sub 2:50. That would be almost 20 minutes faster than Idaho. I now feared hearing the 2:50 pace group. They were chatty enough that I knew I’d hear them first. I kept pushing… and repeating my new mantra.

Around mile 9, we looped around on the path and started making our way back to the start line. 4 miles to go and the wheels were starting to come off. We hit a section of direct sunlight and I started to melt. I took a wet towel at an aid station for the first time ever. (They’ve always kind of grossed me out.) I was walking more and more and then there was no more running.

I cramped. Hard. Both my calves seized up. Running was no longer an option. It just wouldn’t work. I was power walking as best I could. Which was also contributing to my issue as I was still maintaining a mid 13 pace. Which was also earning me comments from other runners as I passed a few- I was walking faster than they were running. Couldn’t tell if they were impressed or irritated.

But it was all for naught. I heard the voices I had been fearing. The 2:50 group caught up and dropped me. Wah. But that also took away my crazy push which may be why I suddenly felt a massive side cramp as well as the continuous leg cramps. At this point I was trying everything and even walking backwards at some points. Now I was just making people laugh. 12 and 13 were my slowest- 14:31 and 14:52.

This is the first finish line I have ever walked across. Even when I’ve had horrible GI races or rolled my ankle on the side of the mountain, I’ve found a way to at least jog across the finish line. This time? Nope! I just kind of struggle walked across the finish.

But I finished! 2:56:58– ten minutes faster than Idaho.

While this race was flat- and flat is not my fave- I would totally run it again. It reminded me of me, if that makes sense.

Forced Rest

I didn’t plan on radio silence but I think I was in denial.

If I didn’t recap the previous week’s runs, I wouldn’t have to think about the pain in my right leg.

The pain that had been there since we returned from the CDA Half. It would ease at times and then come back with a vengeance. There were times that it felt like there was a giant knot in the back of my leg on my calf. Sometimes it would radiate up past my knee. I could never see anything but it hurt to touch as well. I occasionally tried rolling it out but the pain was too much.

Then it eased up.

My trail run with my dad was fine and I was good for a couple of days. I headed out for a short run in the middle of week 2 (new training plan) and I mean short- it was 2 miles. That was due to a time crunch though and I felt fine. Or so I thought. The leg was little tight the next few days and didn’t really loosen until the weekend and I rested it on that Saturday.

My long run for that week was 6 miles according to my training plan. My leg was feeling looser so I figured I would give it a shot. I wanted something softer than pavement though so I headed to the beach. I really need to start checking the tide schedule- the tide was so damn high. I was dodging beachgoers as well as the tide. Also got stuck on some rocks but at least it was an adventure? Then I cooled off with nature’s ice bath- the Pacific Ocean. I felt pretty good.

Until the next morning, Monday, got out of bed and damn near fell over ripping of 4 letter words. I felt like I had the biggest know ever in my calf and could barely straighten my leg. Walking was super gimpy and painful. It was now also noticeable to everyone at work that I was having trouble walking. Between them and my mother being Dr’s of Google, they had all narrowed it down to a blood clot or I tore something. Thanks for the negativity. Also, I didn’t like either of those options. I finally broke down and made a dr’s appointment.

Then of course, that very same day, I moved in a way I still can’t recall but the constant pressure on my right calf suddenly eased. What??? But, why? I swear I hadn’t done anything different. I still limped a little for the next 2 days but nothing like before.

I’m not completely stupid so I took the all of last week off. And so far this week. The limp is 98% gone. My doctor’s appointment is tomorrow morning. Not that I am expecting much… I don’t usually have good results from my PCP… I usually just use him for referrals. So, fingers crossed?

CDA Half Marathon- Recap

Holy crap, a real life race!

Disclaimer: I received an entry into CDA Half Marathon to review 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!

It’s been over a year since my last in person race. When the chance to run Coeur D’Alene came up, I jumped at it. Things would be open by Memorial Day, right? I wasn’t picked in the first run and I was bummed but then I was hit with the melanoma diagnosis and my brain ran away so maybe it was a good thing. A month or so later, something changed and a spot opened up. Once I made sure I could switch to the virtual if things didn’t change or if I had more things to deal with on the skin front. But… I headed out of town on my first race trip since March 2020 last week. Yay!

Holy crap, that is a long drive from the middle of California. Coeur D’Alene is gorgeous. The lake and the park with the trails is like runner heaven- could that just be plopped down where I am, please?

The race was utilizing a rolling start from 5:30AM to 11:00AM. You had to register for your start time before race day. I am an idiot and chose 8:30. What? I then stressed about it right up until race morning. I showed up early on race morning as I was concerned about parking. The parking lot was huge but throw in lots of runners combined with a busy public park and who know what could happen. This turned out to be a good thing as I heard the announcer say you could jump in and start if you were there early. Pick me! So instead of 8:30, I started a little after 7:45. Yay!

The first 3 miles headed out into city streets along the lakeside before looping back to the park. Man, there are some nice houses out there. The next 10 miles were on a paved path called the North Idaho Centennial Trail. This thing is 23 miles long! Again, can I have it please?

Going into the race, I had a feeling it was going to be a rough go. I figured if I walked it all and kept a 15 minute pace, I would finish around 3:15. Any running could bring me down but not far… I really am that out of shape. So there was a good chance this was going to my new personal worst.

And it was.

But I don’t care. This was about enjoying racing, taking in the sights and being around other runners again. I missed it more than I thought. It was so good. The course was awesome, lake views for most of it, dream houses for the other part. Plus, I decided I really like rolling starts. I never felt like I was back of the pack even though I definitely was. I was very warm though so I was questioning the sanity of everyone who started later in the day. I’ve never taken in so much water during a race before in my life. I drank 4 bottles on course.

So yeah, I was slow but it was fun. Other than some odd toe pain. That said, I would definitely run this race again. But maybe fly in?

Also, my finish time of 3:05:54 makes me laugh- it is exactly one hour more than my PR. To the second. That makes me giggle for some reason.

Fast

Where did January go? How is this even possible?

Hell, considering I started this post on Monday and it’s now Friday that you are reading it… where did the week go?

I did not get in the miles I had hoped in January. I ended the month with 25 ish miles. Which if we are being honest, is kind of on par with the last few months. Stupid 2020.

I really had hoped for more but the month went by stupid fast. I think I have whiplash, ha. Work got a little chaotic-like. First general busy-ness then a surprise inspection followed by a big maintenance project that I totally wanted but wasn’t ready for. Don’t get me wrong, I am glad it was done but wow was I unprepared for one day to become last week. And this week.

January saw road miles and dirt miles. 2 very different views of the Pacific Ocean, both good. Still on the fence about the trail shoes but hopefully getting there.

With my time flying realization, it also occurred to me that I have races in the next few months, I should probably get on a training plan for. Oops. I have the Napa Valley Perfect Pairing (virtual), the Oakland Marathon half (virtual) which I should downgrade to the 10K. Then a maybe IRL race- Saguaro Half Marathon out in Tucson. All in the next 8ish weeks.

Proving that I still don’t look at calendars well.