Sunday workout: America’s Finest City Half Marathon, time 1:56:32, 8:54 pace, finished just outside of the TOP 10%!!!
What an effing race. Holy shitballs!!!
First, Saturday night, P was driving home, scheduled to arrive at our place around 10:30pm. I had one helluva day running around picking up bib numbers, buying shoes etc. and was really wound up for some reason. Despite not being tired, I got into bed around 8:30pm. I tried listening to music, silence, crappy tv shows on Hulu–everything, but I wasn’t tired. P got home right on time, and caught a little sleep, but I seriously got no more than 2 hours total sleep and never more than 20min at a time. I finally got out of bed at 3:30am thinking that I had effed any chance of running well.
Bfast yesterday was a PB&J Bagel and a 90cal Mix1 Protein Shake. Lemme tell ya, eating at 4:30am makes you feel a little vommy. I didn’t drink too much, maybe 12oz water and my 12oz protein shake. I didn’t want to have to stop and pee on the course and lose time. I peed before we left the house, when we parked, and right before the race… yes I have a squirrel bladder. It worked though, I didn’t have to stop on the course AT ALL!
Dubstep entertained P-Love and I while getting ready, driving to Balboa Park and while we waited in the car until 5am-ish to walk over and hop on a bus to the start. Good music before a race is essential to me because I don’t use an iPod while running.
The first 2 miles of the course were pretty solid downhills, miles 3-10 were essentially flat and miles 11-13.1 were up a beast of a hill. Due to the lack of water (I think) I cramped up BAD during the first 2 miles. I was feeling like shit. My thoughts went from PR to “just finish” but I kept pushing. I tried to work it out by stretching my arms over my head while running (surprisingly hard), flex my abs, mentally focus the pain away etc, but it was gnarly. The pain subsided from an 8 to about a 5.5 after a mile or so and I was sure we had totally lost our pace. I looked over at P who was super worried about the grimace I was sporting and said, “I’ll be ok, how far off pace are we?” He fistbumped me, smiled and said that we were still on pace. We decided to make the downhill work for us and I seriously got in.the.zone.
P is a beast and ran off to find a bathroom while I kept going, and he still managed to catch up to me like it was nothing.
There were barefoot runners. So HARDCORE. Seriously though, so many people spit, and puke and there is glass everywhere– barefoot running seems gnarly.
Oh yeah, there was an 11 year old girl running, too. Bad ass.
The last 2 miles were brutal. I knew that as long as we kept our pace around a 9min mile we would meet our goal of finishing in under 2 hours. By mile 11 we had plenty of time, so barring anything crazy I knew we would do it. I didn’t want to just finish in under 2 hours at this point, I wanted to push it for the best time I could get. Hills are gnarly, but hills are what I excel at. Put me on a flat course and I get bored, give me a hill to climb and I feel like it’s my job to kick its stupid annoying ass. Maybe it’s a way to say “Eff you hill, for giving me bad gas mileage, making parallel parking a huge pain in the ass, causing me to sweat and feel gross, eff you hill.” Who knows?
We punched it up the hill out of downtown SD and into Hillcrest and I was feeling good. Lots more people were at this part of the course, cheering us on, and that always really helps me. We rounded the corner into Balboa park and I started to tear up. For some reason finishing a race always makes me feel like I kick ass. That no matter what else is sucking in life, I just finished something that is damn hard, I didn’t give up and I finished, for me and no one else. It’s a good feeling. We had .6miles to go and from the entrance of Balboa to the end we hit it hard. I mean by the time we were on the home stretch I was sprinting like it was a 100m dash, no effing clue where that energy came from.
We beat our previous PR by almost 4.5 minutes. Hell yes.
What did I think of the race? No energy, at all. No people cheering along the course, the runners were very quiet and unenthusiastic, the course was just quiet. The course was pretty and interesting, the buses efficient, parking well orchestrated and after race food and such good. The tshirts suck. When 55% of the racers are women, shouldn’t you offer a women’s shirt? I got a men’s xs, so it’s a dress. No Gu’s or Shotbloks were offered, just water and an electrolyte beverage. I probably won’t run this race again.
It still doesn’t change the fact that I PR’ed!!!!!!!!!! Woot!