Monday, February 04, 2013

My Second Race

"OMG, I'm so happy it's over."
With all that goes on in my life and in my head, I have no idea why running is the only topic that's covered here lately. Though I am only just beginning to refer to myself as a "runner", it has come to signify so many things for me, not the least of which is a big, fat metaphor = running from aging.

Me with Jaime
ANYWAY, I completed the Surf City Half-Marathon yesterday in Huntington Beach, California, along with my pal and running coach, Jaime. They shut down a big chunk of Pacific Coast Highway and about 20,000 of us gave it our best shot. The day was gorgeous, although because there were so many of us, they released us in waves so nobody would get trampled. As a result, we didn't get running until at least 8:30 a.m. so we ran in some heat, which I hate.

Nevertheless, the scenery was - as the surfer bros might say - EPIC. Crashing waves on the left, snow-capped mountains on the right, along with palms trees and a wetlands preserve with heaps of beautiful birds. While there weren't as many cheering roadside volunteers on this race, there were plenty of school kids handing out water and running in to the crowd to distribute much-needed high fives.

Here's the thing, in the Mississippi race, I hit a wall at 9 miles but kept going, never once stopping to walk. On this race, I hit a wall at 11 miles but stopped briefly to drink some water. After that, I slid into a run/walk/run situation that slowed me down considerably. My hips were complaining, my feet were whining and it felt like I was turning the key on a motor that would rev but never catch. Rrrr-rrr-rrr-rrrrr...

I completed the Mississsippi race in 3:02 and this one in 3:07, just 5 minutes slower. I'm blaming the heat, the later start and maybe - just maybe! - I wasn't prepared as much mentally for this one; complacency is thine enemy. Still, I'm proud to say that I am still without injury or so much as a blister, so there's that.

With Jaime in HB after picking up bibs.
Still, this one was close to home and running the race with someone more experienced, whom I have known and liked for many years, made it extra special. After the run, we peeled off our shoes and hobbled across the sand (Aaaaaaaah! A sand massage!) and stuck those hot puppies in the Pacific Ocean - glorious.

Truth be told, this race kicked my ass. Methinks I'll stick to some 'maintenance running' and break from training mode for awhile. That is, until I get the itch to race again, which I just know will come again...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Two down- more to go. Kirk