In one way I feel like it snuck up on me too quickly and in another way I feel like it’s been a long time coming.
I’ve heard nothing but good things about this race so I am excited to finally be running it. The course starts in Santa Ynez and ends in Solvang, so Santa Barbara is a bit of a misnomer unless they’re going for the county. 😉 My grandparents used to live in Santa Ynez so it’s kind of like a return to childhood for me. Except I wasn’t into running then. 😛
The scenery looks to be back roads and vineyards which are my favorite kinds of roads. And the elevation profile looks fun-
Now, part of it’s called Corkscrew Hill and while that sounds ominous, I don’t see it up there? Except maybe that last bit to mile 7?
Now the last couple of weeks haven’t gone according to plan so I will likely be taking it easier than I planned. I would to shoot for 2:20 but the lack of sleep and a medication mix up this week have left me a little lagging. Ashley of Rather Be Runnin’ is pacing the 2:30 group so maybe I’ll just hang with them and catch up since it’s been so long. Plus Saturday races seem to confuse my body. Or maybe it’s all in my head.😛
By the time you read this, I will be one shift away from 16 days off. 16, people. 16. Ordinarily I would say I was afraid I was going to lose my mind but it’s been a long year. This may be a vacation I can handle. I know I need a few days with no alarms or deadlines.
It may only be December 2 but I have been watching non stop Christmas movies for weeks. I can’t stop!! They are so cheesy and I love it! Now if only I could figure out what to do on the Christmas gift front.
Does anyone else get cold feet? I mean literally. My toes are frozen all the time! I need thicker socks!
I made it out for my second night run! Made it 3 miles this time. It ended up being a very slow progression. 😛 Man our sidewalks are uneven. I was bundled up in tights, tank, long sleeves, my Buff®, a beanie, gloves, reflective vest, and a flashlight. A woman passed me at one point; she was wearing shorts and a dark sweatshirt. One of these things is not like the other.
Starting next year, work won’t be open on Saturdays anymore, well for the most part. While kind of awesome, it’s also odd. Don’t get me wrong, I may miss the occasional odd half day but I won’t miss working Saturdays. Or the trek to that location.
Speaking of that night run, sorry to everyone I blinded with the strobe light on my flash light. Apparently this blonde can’t operate a flashlight properly. 😛
Also, WordPress has recently dumped a lot of the blogs I follow so I’m hunting you all down again. So if you get another follow from me again, hi!
16 days. I keep coming back to that. How long until the boredom posts start coming?
Saturday was a little rougher than I had hoped for. I faced a long run I was afraid of as well as a fear I thought I was past.
I was really nervous, more like freaking out, about this week’s long run. I had never actually completed 12 consecutive miles outside of a race before. My previous longest training day was 11.5 miles that was split into a 7 mile run followed later by a 4.5 mile run/ walk. Something about 12 just seemed so far and impossible. I had a headache Friday evening and it was lingering Saturday morning. I checked the weather and it was only predicted to be in the 80’s so I figured I would run then and get a little more rest. I had a route mapped out of 3 loops of 3.8 miles. I would add one last hill to that last loop to bring myself to 12 miles.
I was already thinking about calling it at 10 when I set out, did I really need 12? I did my first loop and since I felt tired I decided to do the extra hill then instead of last. Even though that got that hill out of the way, somehow it really screwed up my mileage, I lost a mile. I figured it out around mile 9, I didn’t have enough road left to hit 12, so I looped another street to add it back in. As I was running up one hill for the third time, I realized why I may hate long runs so much. My long runs are usually loops of hills- I’ve been doing hill repeats in disguise and never figured it out! Hello, blonde runner over here. This run had an elevation gain of 920. By mile 9.5 I was done. I stopped at the middle school and doused myself and my visor in water at the fountains. I walked the last 2.5 miles but I did it!! 12 miles done! This fear was mostly overcome.
I honestly thought I was over my fear of dogs. I had been bit before as a teen but the worst was when I had just started running. I want to say it’s been more than 4 years since I was attacked by 2 border collies while running. Ok, let’s be honest, I was walking. It was near the top of a street that I had probably walked 100 times by then; I had never even noticed the 2 dogs in that yard until that night. The standard Poodle who stood guard at the second to last house at the top, sure, we had had conversations before. I first noticed the dogs on my way up the street, they were in the front yard and their barks sounded less than friendly but I didn’t think much of it. There were kids playing in a nearby yard and a woman gardening. I went all up the end of the road and turned around like always. On my return trip, both dogs rushed out of the yard and ran my way growling and barking. I froze because running away makes it worse right? Plus I thought they were just going to be noisy and not actually do anything. Wrong- one got around behind me and bit me. On the ass, nice. I was in shock. By now the owner was running out for the dogs and the woman gardening had come closer to observe. The owner informed me that he had just removed their shock collars to give them a bath. Umm, what? By now I had determined I was bleeding so we exchanged numbers and I started the trek back to my car, it was about a mile away. About a block later, the shock wore off and I burst into to tears and started shaking. I had 2 puncture wounds and a gnarly, scary bruise. I later found out that I was not the first person the dogs had attacked. It hurt to run for weeks after- you know you need to lose weight when your butt hurts because it jiggles while running. I started carrying pepper spray on my runs and I still have not gone all the way up that street since that day.
I was afraid of all dogs for a while. I was once rushed by a yellow lab who just wanted to have fun and I freaked out. But over the years, I thought it had eased. There are dogs in the office all the time, ranging from Chihuahua’s to Pits to Dobermans to Bouvier’s. I had come across a loose pit bull on a run once and been ok about it, I told her she was pretty and we went our separate ways. Like I said I was over it. Until Saturday. I was finishing my long run and had just turned up my driveway. When I day driveway I mean street, but there are only 7 houses on the street and with the exception of 2 houses, the rest of us have been here for 10+ years. All the houses have some land so while we don’t all know each others names we know what is usual behavior. One house I call the Victorian has 2 Bouvier’s. Ever seen one? They look like bears, gentle nice bears, but huge all the same. One of the Bouvier’s passed away a year or so ago because I have only seen the gray one. Saturday, there was a gray one and a white one, I still didn’t think much of it because it’s my driveway for crying out loud. I was just passing the first house when I heard them bark. I looked up from pausing my Nike+ app to see them tearing out of their driveway my way, the white one in the lead. Once again I stood still, I had a water bottle in one hand and had been screwing with my phone in the other so I couldn’t even grab my pepper spray. I should have thrown the water bottle but wasn’t thinking that clearly. The white one looked possessed, it looked like it wanted me for dinner, the grey on was just along for the ride. The owner was now yelling, trying to call them back. It got within three inches of my waist before listening to the owner. Crisis over right? Nope. It got about 10 feet away and decided it didn’t want to listen the guy anymore. It turned around and came back at me growling and snarling. Screw standing still, I started backpedaling as fast as I could go. By now the owner was running and finally managed to grab the white one’s collar. As soon as the white one was contained, the gray one was perfectly behaved. He apologized but I was having troubles stringing words together to make a sentence. I finally just bolted up the driveway. I lost it just past his house, again sobbing and shaking. I was shaking so badly I couldn’t get my gate open. I had to stand there for a few minutes before I could get it unlocked.
So yeah, still not over it. And now I am afraid to go back down my driveway. What am I going to do when that customer brings her 2 Bouvier’s into the office? What about the dogs that are always at the lake path? Even just typing this kind of freaked me out again. One step forward, two steps back.
But I did my 12 miles! Sorry this was so long, thanks for sticking it out!
The one where I went into damage control at mile 3. 😦
If 2013 was the year of the PR, then 2014 is shaping up to be the year of the bonk. At least as far as half marathons are concerned. But I have to say that this is first race I ever seriously considered quitting. Even when I ran out steam at mile 7.5 at SLO, I still knew I was going to finish, it was just going to be slow.
For once, I felt like I slept really well the night before this race. I woke up on time and made it to pick up NikeC by 5:30. My stomach was being its usual self, so I did not eat prior to the race. This is typical though, so I don’t think it affected me too much. Parking was easy but time-consuming, the race was smaller than last year, it had about 200 for the half marathon and just under 1000 for the 10K, but parking was limited. Once parked, we geared up, met up with NikeC’s friend and headed to the bathroom. Which was where we were when the starting gun went off. Last year I was still running to the chute when the gun went off, oops. Thank goodness for chip timing. We made our way to the chute and were off.
Slowly as there were 100 yards of softer sand to get through at the beginning. Once on the hard pack, it was easier to run. I lost both of them fairly quickly. One moment they were to my left and then they were gone. Last year’s race was overcast, this year the sun was shining and the ocean was gorgeous. Last years 10K went so well (easy) that I had minor hopes for a birthday PR but I knew my speed was iffy thanks to my month of stomach issues. Realistically, though, I was aiming for under 2:10. So all I had to do was stay under a 10 minute mile- I got that right? Ummm…
Mile 1- 9:45 -ok, slower than I’d like but there was soft sand Mile 2-9:45– hmmm felt way faster than that, but consistent at least. If only this stomach cramp would go away. Mile 3- 9:51 felt like I had already run the full 13, shifted to a run/ walk method Mile 4– 10:02 I just choked on air, walk break, take a few pictures. Now the cramp is on the other side. Mile 5– 10:09 Wheezing, need air, where’s my inhaler? Yes nice man in front of me I see the dolphins (which now I think was awesome but then, not so much.) Mile 6- 9:47 I refuse to hit the turnaround (10K) past the hour mark, pick it up! 6.2 mark– Turn around 59:08-Man, I wish I was doing the 10K. Mile 7-10:18 oh, my god, why is this so hard Mile 8– 10:24– my run .9/ walk .1 is falling apart, walking more often and longer Mile 9– 11:09 another sudden need for my inhaler. Man the water is so much closer now. Mile 10– 11:25 oh hell, I could take my shoes and socks off and just walk leisurely back to the finish. I’m mostly walking anyways. Oh fisherman, please don’t cast your reel at me, that would hurt. Mile 11– 12:15 Oh, what hell is this? To make 13.1, we had to go up through the dunes to run a mile on a paved path. I could have crawled faster through the sand. Is it hot? Why am I so hot? Mile 12-11:57 Made it to a 9:20 pace on the pavement, soft sand on the way back to the beach brought me back down. Mile 13– 11:15 Why is this mile so long!! I feel like I have been staring at the finish line in the distance forever. Ugh, just keep running.
Finish- 2:20:21 Ouch. Literally and figuratively. My calves were on fire. Even with running in compression socks, I was so sore by the time I crossed the finish line. My chip was cut off as I was handed my medal. It’s freakin’ awesome! That helped alleviate some of my irritation. I drank some water and chatted with my family while waiting for NikeC to finish.
Running a race with a friend was awesome. It was great at the starting line, and we passed each other twice on the course which was a great little pick-me-up. The finish line was fun too. I am looking forward to our next race. 🙂
The race course itself was amazing. Blue skies and blue ocean, and the beach, come on. Seagulls and dolphins, too. Given how close the water was on the way back, I understood the early start time more. There was plenty of water stops. They had volunteers directing where to turn around and when to turn off the beach. My only 2 slight negatives were- no on course bathrooms, and I never saw a mile marker. Now I was pretty much head down in misery from mile 3 on but I still think I would have seen at least one. As for bathrooms, I realize that it was on the beach and I have never used a bathroom during a race but it’s nice to know they are there if you need one.
For the cost of this race, 50 bucks!, the swag was amazing and I think the medal may be my new favorite. Plus there was live music and an amazing breakfast buffet at the finish line, eggs, sausage, orange juice, etc. I only wish I felt like trying some of it.
We headed out shortly after that. I was having a little shindig that evening for my birthday that I had to get ready for. Yesterday I was oddly sore in weird places. My butt and my lower back hurt, guess I ran differently on the sand this time than previous races.
Overall, this race was part of a great day. Yes, I was seriously disappointed in my performance but hey, I didn’t quit! I need to figure out what is going with my stomach so I can get back to speed work. Right now I have no idea how ever ran a 2:05 let alone trying to fathom breaking 2:00. My next half is in 8 weeks, and it’s flat and paved, so fingers crossed, my time will start heading in the right direction.
So, I learned today that glass scales are made of tempered glass. They still shatter into hundreds of pieces when dropped on a tile floor; but there way fewer sharp edges. My big toe still found a sharp one. 😦
Today was fairly calm for a Friday- woo- hoo!
My coworkers bought me these beautiful flowers-As well as pizza for lunch, they know me so well.
Then there was this cake. Tomorrow’s race may just be fueled by cake. Cake’s a carb, right?I managed to sneak out for a break around 4 to pick up the race packet. That was also the first time I saw tomorrow’s new age in print, yikes! However, the swag was kind of awesome.Then it was back to work before heading home. This is when I had a wardrobe conundrum-Now, my gear is packed. A new playlist is ready (no Wrecking Ball), my Garmin is charged, and it’s off to bed for me. I have a 4:30 am wake up call. Ouch.