"...In the end, people either have excuses or experiences; reasons or results; buts or
brilliance. They either have what they wanted or they have a detailed list of all the rational reasons why not."

~ Anonymous
(taken from Matt Erbele's, It Takes Time to Get Good)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Race Report: Buzz 1/2 Marathon San Miguel, CA

My race buddy decided this week to go down with me to the Buzz 1/2 Marathon. Very cool. She wasn't fully ready for a half-marathon, but figured she could finish and I was glad to have the company on what is a miserably boring drive.

(Pre-race ham shot)

We had to leave a o' dark thirty to get to San Miguel for the check in. We are habitually early. I am glad we both feel the same way about this. When I am nervous about something I would rather be WAY too early than get there at the last minute and feel rushed.

The race was held at Camp Roberts Military base and we had to get officially checked in my the MPs (they were super hot, but they had guns so, no pictures. Sorry ladies)

The race is a really small, fund raiser run for the Lillian Larsen School in San Miguel. They were a little lacking in signage, but we figured out where to go. The volunteers were PTA moms, grandmoms, and granddads and were very sweet. There was a full marathon, 1/2 marathon and a kids 5K.

The race started at 8:35 and I was quickly left in the dust as usual. This has stopped freaking me out as much. I think it is good training for Napa. Except at Napa I don't think I will get to pass anyone later on. I did get to pass about 8 people later in the race so I wasn't dead last.

I would love to write what a glorious run this was from the start, but that was not the case. My legs felt like shit for about 5 miles. The side of my shin where I got my injection Thursday was sore, my ankles were sore and I had this nagging pain down the left side of my other shin. I kept telling myself that this was normal, that it was always hard for at least a mile, but around mile four when we started to climb (more on this later) and my legs still felt bad I was beginning to get concerned that I would not feel better and this run would be tough all the way through.

(taking pretty pictures to distract me from my icky feeling legs)

Then came the hill. There was a gradual uphill in the beginning of the race which I don't mind on an out and back because that means you will going down hill in the way in, but at mile 4.5 there was a real hill, that took at serious up turn at mile 5. You might be able to spot it on this elevation chart of the race (yes, that was facetious. Holy shit!)

I ran up the whole thing, I wasn't fast, but I made it up. Interestingly enough, my lower legs felt much better after that. My quads were pretty fried, but at least the nagging pains of my lower legs went away. The rest of the run was good, my knees were complaining on the steep downhill (you had to run back down that beast) but they did pretty well for the rest of the race.

Now for the good part, my previous half marathon time at San Jose Rock 'n Roll in 2006 was 2:59:40. I have been working pretty hard to improve my speed so, I was hoping to do this one in 2:45:00 and my super-secret hope was to do it in 2:30:00. When I saw the hill my hopes were dashed. The SJ Rock 'n Roll is perfectly flat NO hills whatsoever, so I did not think I could improve my time very much on a more difficult course, but when I came in and stopped my watch it read.....

*drum roll please*

2:22:54!!! 10:55 min/mile pace

A new PR on a a much more difficult course! The lady at the finish gave me a Buzz Marathon Finisher's Dog Tag (very cute touch I think. Horrible picture to the right, but you get the point). Most runner's would be mortified with that time, but I thought was was going to cry, I was so happy.

Then I waited for my run buddy to finish. She came in at 3:25:40 and although she had to walk more than she originally wanted, she had a good time too.

We went to lunch and then checked into the motel. I had rented a room because I thought I was going alone and I wanted to shower and nap before the long, boring drive home. It was kind of an extravagance, but since I had already paid for it (I couldn't cancel when she told me she wanted to go with me) we took advantage of it. Since I wasn't going to stay the night I booked a cheap room. We both about fell over dead from laughter when we saw the decor (yep, those are teddy bears. ON EVERYTHING. Including the lampshades), but it was a relatively nice room and felt good to drive home clean and rested.


Willie said...

WOW! You set a PR on THAT course?!? That's a 400+ foot climb, you're an animal! Great job. You're on your way to a great Napa run. Take some time and celebrate.

Southbaygirl said...

Woman-who would be horrified at that time? Not me!! That's GREAT!!!!! You are wonderwoman! I'm so bummed I missed it! Damn those cats whose shit I'm shovelling!!!But at least yopu had a friend there!!! That helps so much especially on a boring drive!I just bring Velcro-and talk to her-people must think I'm nuts!!!

I know how you feel about feeling icky-why does that happen?? It sucks! But at least you felt better during the second half! I always like that feeling.

As for the teddy bear room-LOVE IT!!!! I would have taken pictures of everything!!!

Congrats woman!! You are so ready for Napa!!! When is that? maybe I'll drive up for it....hmm..road trip!! FUN!


Southbaygirl said...

I seriously need to live in a flat place! I didn't realize how hilly it is...well I've actually known it's hilly-but after 8 miles the hills suck!!!
Sheep herding was interesting! I don't think I'll be taking her on an 8.5 mile run before herding again. Made her a bit stubborn!! well she's stubborn anyway but it was made worse. We had to use the jealousy tactic to get her back out to herd because she kept running off when I was telling her to get back~cattle dogs are really meant to herd sheep, so unfortunately it takes extra training to get them to not dive into the heels of the sheep~so by telling her to get back-she gets back, but today she got back all the way to the car!!! Stubborn Cattle Dogs!! I took a Border Collie out after she did that twice-she wasn't too thrilled with that, but by god she was great afterwards!!! Jealous Stubborn Cattle Dog!!!

Did I say how much I hate the hills here??? I hate the hills!!

Southbaygirl said...

oops must proofread before posting

"cattle dogs are really meant to herd cattle (not sheep) so it takes extra training...."