Well, I was half right. It was nice to see Ron.
Total distance: 13.35 miles (I took a slight detour, but it was NOT my fault this time!)
Total Time: 2:52:34
Total climb: 1520'
Total Number of Bloggy Buddies that dropped my ass AGAIN: 1 (Oh, we will get to that!)
I snookered LA Run Buddy into going with me. She was going to run the 5K and then work on some stuff for school while she waited (and waited, and waited, as it would turn out) for me to finish the half marathon.
Ron's picture of us from after the race. Mental note: Always have pictures taken by people freakishly taller than you. Very slimming. Me likey!
We met up with Ron. He was easy to find in his signature crazy ass hair. LA Run Buddy asked, "Do you see your friend?" and I said "Yeah, he's the dude with the crazy hair over at registration."
There were like 20 people doing the half marathon and frankly not a regular sized person in the bunch (i.e. all skinny ass runner types).
Great, I get be last. Again.
I can not tell you how many people say to me that they would never do a race because they are worried they will be last. Or tell me as we are waiting at the start line, all nervous and jittery, "I just don't want to be LAST. God, that would be AWFUL."
Meh. It is not so bad.
Especially after the 15th or 16th time, you barely notice anymore. Plus the people at the finish line are usually REALLY nice to you. Probably because they finally get to go home, but whatever.
Anyhoo, back to the race...
When we met up with Ron that morning, he immediately tells me that he is going to run this with me.
[Pause for collective "Riiiiiiiiiiiight" from the audience]
Yeah, that was my response too.
ok, no I don't...), but to draw a little comparison, Willie lasted 4 miles with me at SF Marathon, and this is Ron's and my second encounter of less than 20 yards. The first time can be written off as "this never happens to me," but two times? I am just saying...
Ok, ok. I will give the guy a break. He did say he thought LA Run Buddy was running with me and he did seem pretty sorry when I gave him hell about it when I saw him at mile 6 (his mile 8, whatever) , and then again at the finish line, and then again in the parking lot. Ok, and once more via text message. I am just sweetness and light, aren't I? Can't imagine why he keeps dropping me. *shrugs*
The course ran along the San Pablo Reservoir and it was part paved and part trail. It was a really pretty course and not a super tough run, but my legs were just tired. I suffered for the first three miles before my legs finally warmed up. I always love the internal dialogue that goes on when I am suffering early on in a run:
RBR: My shins hurt. I think it is shin splints. I should stop so as to not risk further injury.
Rational RBR: You are not even at one mile yet. You will warm out of it.
RBR: My ankle hurts. I think it is my Achilles. I better stop now before I really injure myself.
Rational RBR: Mile 1.1. You are fine. Suck it up.
RBR: I feel a twinge on the outside of my knee. Clearly, this is IT Band Syndrome. I better walk now.
Rational RBR: Mile 2, Drama Llama. How did you EVER run even one marathon, much less 11, being this much of a whiny bitch? Just run, for god's sake!
And finally my legs warmed out of it and I started to enjoy the run. Just in time to get lost.
Now, before you roll your eyes and say "Christ, they mark these courses. What is your malfunction?" I was lead astray! I was happily running down the trail when two gals came running back toward me saying that we missed a turn and that the trail dead ends ahead. Hmmm... I really thought there was only one way to go, but since I do not have a great track record for staying on course during runs, I listened to them and headed back the way we came. I was right, there was only one way to go.
The pretty bridge we had to return to see that yes, in fact we had gone the right way the first time
Apparently in the 20 minute diatribe that the race director was giving us before the race, he mentioned that we would have to go through a gate at about mile 4. Why exactly do race directors do this? They gather the crowd for a pre-race talk that invariably goes through an exhaustive turn by turn of the entire course that sounds like this:
"At about mile 6.743 you will come to a four way intersection, veer slightly to the left, not to the left, mind you, just slightly to the left and follow the trail to the point where you find a fallen log. DO NOT turn there. Wait until you see the fourth fallen log and then go right....."
Seriously? Does anyone remember what they say?
I always feel as if I should have brought a note pad and a pen. I suppose it is so when you come back broken and bloody from falling off a cliff because the trail abruptly ended, they can shrug at you and say condescendingly, "We told you to go right at the fourth fallen log."
Whatever. It was a relatively short diversion and as I previously went over, I was not winning this thing, so I was not too worried about it.
The rest of the run was beautiful. It got hot and I was tired, but all in all I had a great time, met some really nice folks, and when I finally dragged my big ass to the finish line I was shocked to find out I won second place in my age group.
Bling Shot: LA Run Buddy won her age group in the 5K, Ron won his age group in the 1/2 marathon, and little Ms RBR got second in her age group in the 1/2 marathon. (Photo by Captivating Sports Photos, some of the nicest guys in the business!)
Ok, there were only 3 in my age group and the only gal I beat was injured and had to walk the last 3 miles, but whatever, I WON something!
I love this guy. Thanks, man, for always making me smile. Next time I know you can go the distance ;)
Wolf Pack Events
This was my first race with this group and they were some seriously nice people and put on a really nice event. I know, I always say that, but in general, if I did not like something or someone, or did not have an opinion towards them either way, I will not mention them here. (Not by name at least ;) Unless they piss me off, then all bets are off )
1. Well marked course
2. Plenty of aid stations with teenagers running the stations, but adults about to keep them on task. (Always a good idea, in my opinion)
3. Cold water at aid stations
4. Really sweet and enthusiastic volunteers
5. Still had food left after the last runner came in, and no, not just rat ass watermelon rinds.
1. Cotton t-shirt (honestly, would have preferred a tech shirt over a medal or lower price option to opt out of the t-shirt all together.)
2.Small bottled waters seemed like a waste.
3. Not enough slow runners.... ok, can't really blame them for that one