SacTown 10 – 5 Mile Race Recap

Yesterday morning I got up early, jumped into my running clothes and headed up to downtown Sacramento to run the SacTown 10 – 5 mile.  The weather was really nice.  The sun was shining but there was a stiff breeze especially around the high-rise buildings.  I was hoping for a much stiller morning but at least it wasn’t hot.

SacTown10 - View of the Capital

It was still a bit dark when I got there at 7:45 but I managed to find a small patch of sun that wasn’t directly next to the porta potties to stand in until the start.  The kids miracle mile started at 8am, followed by the 5 mile at 8:30 and finally the 10 mile at 9.  It was a weird start especially since the 10 mile people made two loops of the course.  I’m not sure why they didn’t just start them together.  And there were no “corrals” for different pace times.  You just lined up and took your chances…and prayed you weren’t behind someone slower than you or blocking someone faster than you.

Places Marked in Red were hills.
Places Marked in Red were hills.

The course was much hillier than I expected.  I knew there were going to be some hills, primarily after mile 1, but I wasn’t expecting all the other hills.  Some were short steep hills and some were gradual hills that seemed to run on for miles (mile 4).  Where I live the hills are the way they slop the streets for water run off.  Saying we don’t have any is an understatement.  It’s flat, flat here and I’m only 30 driving minutes from downtown Sac.

There were two aid stations on the course at mile 2 and mile 4 and both were great.  I passed on the mile 2 one but did grab some water at mile 4.  I was surprised at how little water was in the cup, just enough for me to wet the inside of my mouth and then choke on (as usual).  But the folks manning the stations were very cheerful and were yelling encouragement the whole time.

Once you rounded the corner onto the Tower Bridge after mile 4 it was all down hill to the finish line.

Photobomb by Maggie
Photobomb by Maggie

I finished in a very respectable 50:48.  But the course was almost a 10th of a mile longer then the 5 advertised miles.  I’m not sure if I just didn’t cut the corners like I should have or what but .7 is a lot longer.  I wonder how long it actually was for the 10-milers.

We're in a drought here as evidanced by the grass in front of the capital building.
We’re in a drought here as evidanced by the grass in front of the capital building.
Offical Results
Offical Results
Age Group Results
Age Group Results

SacTown10 - Bib & Metal

Over all it was a good race and I would run it again.

What’s your run brag?

What’s Next…

I’ve been spending most of my time working on my race schedule for this year.  I’d like to try to race once a month, mostly shorter distances with at least 1 half marathon.

Tenative Schedule for 2015
tentative Schedule for 2015

I’ve already run the Running of the Elk and I’m registered for SacTown 10.  But all the others are tentative.  A couple of months have more than one race but as the date get’s closer I’ll pick one.  Some will get weeded out as being too far away.

I'm in!
I’m in!

But I did go ahead and sign up for the Folsom Blues Breakout.  I really wanted to run this last year but due to my injuries and I passed up registering for it.  I’m only planning on picking one half marathon this year and I really want to do this one.  It’s a great course that’s relatively close to us and it’s mostly down hill.  I’m hoping for a new PR but if not, I’m looking forward to just enjoying the day.  Summer training for this one is going to hurt but I’m looking at joining a training group for it just as a way to stay on track.  I already know from past experience that I can train sucessfully on my own but I’d also like to meet people who also enjoy running like I do.  I have tons of “on-line” friends but none are really local or train at my pace.  Maybe my new best friend is in this group and we just haven’t met yet.

Trying to find a race for August was difficult.  There isn’t much that’s offered close to home for that month.  I’m assuming it’s because of the heat.  I might add a destination race for that month if I can.  I’m thinking something Central Coast.  Morrow Bay or Santa Cruz if they have something going.  August is also Hubbs birthday month so I have to make sure that I’m not planning anything that will interfere with his birthday celebration.

I also have no race for December.  I guess that it’s so far out that not a lot of planning is complete yet for that month.  I’m sure as it get’s closer, I’ll be able to find some kind of Christmas themed race or fun run.

Do you plan out your race calendar? Or are you a go with the flow, whatever catches your fancy kind of runner?

Running of the Elk 2015 – Race Recap

It’s been almost two weeks since I ran my first 5k of the race season and it went great!  I finished in an amazing 30:02.9…fine, 30:03.  But it was awesome.  I had no plan other than to run the race and enjoy myself.  I felt a little apprehensive at first but as soon as it was the 5k’s turn to start all that went away.

30:02.9 - Not my fastest ever but still awesome!
30:02.9 – Not my fastest ever but still awesome!

I couldn’t have asked for better weather.  The sun was shining but the air temp was cool but not so cool that I wasn’t comfortable to run in shorts and a tank top.  I forgot my sunglasses and had to make an emergency pit stop at a gas station for a pair of cheapies.  I also forgot to charge my headphones and I was worried that they were going to quit on my half way but they never did.  And I finally got to use my race bib belt that I purchased last year.  Awesome piece of “equipment.”  It was so great to attach my bib to it and put it on after I got out of the car rather than pin the bib to my shirt and end up with a wrinkled mess before I even got to the race.  It never rode up or even moved around.  I honestly didn’t give it a single thought during my run.

Love my new bib belt
Love my new bib belt

The half went out first at 8am.  It was weird to stand on the side and watch the half go off without me.  But honestly, it was a relief to know that I wasn’t going out for that distance.  Being real with myself I know that I’m not up for right now and that I’m probably only going to race a since half this year vs the 4 I did last year.  It’s just not in the cards for me and I’m increasing my mileage at only a half a mile per week.  I want to do everything possible to be injury free in 2015.

The 5k was supposed to start at 8:15 but there was a little delay; nothing big, just a few minutes.  I originally lined up at the 10 min/mile sign but when I realized that walkers were lining up in front of me, I moved toward the front.  I understand that they have as much right to be there as anyone but I wish someone would take these folks aside and give them an etiquette lesson.  But that’s a whole other post.  I ended up lined up at about 8:30 min/mile and it was fine.  I still had to pass some folks that were walking but it wasn’t anything that really interfered with my race.

Running of the elk Map

The course was part out and back and part loop.  It was just over 2 miles of street running before it turned onto a bike/foot path next to a creek before it turned back onto the original street to the finish line.  I liked the course.  It was a shady and fairly flat.  And it was fun to get passed by the 1/2’s front-runner.  Plus with the turn around, we got to see the first female in the 5k which always holds a special place for me.  It was fun to cheer for her and let her know she’s first.

Finishing with my new best running buddy, Walter.
Finishing with my new best running buddy, Walter.

Some time after mile 2, I picked up a new running buddy.  We were pushing each other to go faster and faster.  He said he just couldn’t let me go by him and it was really fun to run with him.  I think we need to hook up for training runs ever week.  I’m giving credit to Walter for that 9:23 min/mile in mile 3.  He just wouldn’t let me by and I wouldn’t quit trying to get by; not that he was preventing me from getting by because we were passing people right and left.

Love seeing those splits in the 9's!
Love seeing those splits in the 9’s!

The finish was slightly up hill but nothing major.  By that time the endorphins were really kicking so I was feeling no pain anyway.  I’m super thrilled with my time and I really enjoyed this race.  I would definitely run this again.

I won!  Ok, I didn't place in my age group but it was a major victory!
I won! Ok, I didn’t place in my age group but it was a major victory!

On The Morrow We Race!

Well, not the  morrow but Sunday, Sunday, Sunday.

Running of the Elks - 2015

I ran the half last year but this year I registered for the 5k.  I’m nowhere near in half marathon shape.  I’ve had a mental block for running any further than a 5k but yesterday I finally broke and ran 3.5 miles.

03-25-15 Run

It was a slow run but I had negative splits and I finally beat that block.

03-25-15 Splits

I’m some what apprehensive about racing.  I tend to be this way at any race but right now I’m concerned about just finishing it without killing myself.  My block  has mostly been due to concern in regards to injuring myself again.  The goal for this year is to be injury free so I’m working on getting stronger in all regards.

I’ve also lost a lot of stamina after being off for the last few months.  The huffing and puffing that goes on with my running currently is awful.  I’m pretty sure people think I’m going to have a heart attack and die.  But so far, I’ve survived.

I have no time goal for this race.  No pace.  No plan.  I just want to finish and set a base line for myself.  If you’re in the Sacramento area, come out and cheer for the 5k, 10k and half marathoners.  It’s going to be fun!

Is Anybody Out There?…

If you don’t follow me on Instagram (and you should, I’m awesome!), I have been running.  It’s still a day-to-day thing but I’m making progress right now. 

St. Patrick's Day Run - the day before

I’m running up to 5k currently and am finally not sucking wind the whole time.  I was shocked to see how much of my athletic ability had dropped off between the end of November and the beginning of February.

For some reason I was under the impression that I would be able to run 10 miles with no problem when I started back up again but that really hasn’t been the case.  I’ve struggled to make it through runs that last year would have not been worth the effort.  Not to mention the struggle with my weight.  To be honest, I packed on some pounds due to not being able to get much exercise and continuing to eat like a I was running 120 miles a month.   Surprise, surprise, I gained.  But I’ve been working on it and have already taken off some of that weight.  Thank goodness for my Fitbit.  Love that thing.

Fitbit - All Green

I’ve been trying to have all my goals met every day for the last 3 and a half weeks and have been pretty successful every day except once when I over ate but my mom was here so I wasn’t too worried about it as long as I made good choices and got all my steps in.

I love a good challenge so the challenges on Fitbit where you challenge your friends to meet their daily goals or to see who can get the most steps in a week or a weekend has been really fun.  Right now I’m in a tight run off for the work week with another girl and its been really competitive.  But it’s total inspiration to get all my steps in and then some.  I just refuse to let her win without giving it all I have.  If you’ve got a Fitbit, send me a friend request!

Tell me what’s motivating you?

Who else has spring fever for all the super cute new running clothes that are out for spring?

 

Friday 5 – Favorite Winter Activities

It’s Friday again (thank goodness) and if you’re having a week like I’m having you’re super glad it’s Friday.  The drama, the drama.  Work has been extra crazy this week.  I’ve been training a new girl and she’s awesome but it seems that the change-up in activity in my area has brought out the worst in some of my other coworkers.  Yikes.

Friday is Friday 5 link up time with Courtney at Eat Run Pray DC, Cynthia at You Signed Up for What and Mar at Mar on the Run.  If you’re not reading these blogs, you should be.  This weeks theme is Favorite Winter Activities.  My top 5 (in no particular order) are:

1.  Snow shoeing…The last few years due to the drought in California I haven’t had much of a chance to do any snow shoeing.  Fingers crossed for this year.

snow shoeing

2.  Snow wheeling…My sweetie is right in the middle of building a new Jeep just for this purpose (and some rock crawling in the summer).  I haven’t been able to go the last few years but I’m hoping this year we’ll have a chance if he finishes the Jeep in time.

Snow Wheeling

3.  Running…It’s California.  Even in winter our weather is pretty mild here and running is a year round sport.  If it’s windy I stay home but rain doesn’t bother me.  I figure I’m going to get sweaty anyway so I may as well run.

running

4.  Knitting…when the weather get’s too cold or too windy, I like to settle in with a couple of cute dogs on my lap, a cup of coffee and knit.  I don’t think it should come as a surprise to anyone that I’m an old lady.  I freely admit it.  I go to bed at 9pm and I like knitting.  Whatever.

knitting

5.  Football…I know it’s really more of a fall thing but with college play offs going on in the new year, I’m looking forward to it.  The rivalries have been intense this year and I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen at the bowl games.  *cough* GO Bama!

College Football Playoffs

 

What are your favorite winter activities?

What it isn’t!

I just want to run

Tuesday after work I suited up and tossed on my new Glycerin’s for a test run.  But sadly the run wasn’t to be.  I took about 5 steps and realized the my right shin is still too painful to run on.  It’s causing a limp that’s really pronounced and majorly annoying.  So I decided that after almost 3 weeks of very little running due to the pain, it was time to call the doctor.  I just feel like it’s not healing up very quickly and it’s time to see the doctor.

Some how, against all the odds, I managed to get a doctor’s appointment with my doctor yesterday after work.  The doctor was running about 40 minutes behind schedule when I got there but I decided to wait to see her because of the “super” storm that is supposed to arrive today (so far very disappointing as far as storms go).  After talking to the doctor she sent me for x-rays because she was concerned that it might be a stress fracture.  I was sure it wasn’t for no reason other than I didn’t want it to be that.  And it wasn’t.  The x-rays showed no evidence of a fracture.  Thank you power of positive thinking.  She’s sending me back to the sports medicine doctor and expects him to send me to physical therapy.  Yay.  Not.

I don’t know what it is about physical therapy but it makes me cringe.  I don’t know why other than the fact that I’m extremely lazy and I don’t want to do the work they want me to do.  But I’m going to suck it up and go.  I don’t have an appointment yet but I’m hoping for next week.  In the mean time it’s ice, rest and stretching.  But I guess that I shouldn’t complain since it’s just shin splints and not a fracture.  But I’m tired of being injured this year.  I just want to run.

I think it should be illegal to have brand new running shoes when your injured.  It’s pure torture to know they’re there and not be able to use them.  Soon, my pretties, soon.

Have you every been injured?

How did you deal with not being able to run?

What I Did Instead of Running…

Since I’m not running anywhere near the mileage that I have been in a bid to rest and recharge my batteries I decided to run over to Concord to the closest Road Runner Sports on Saturday.

Road Runner Sports - Concord

It was my first time hitting their store.  Concord is about an hour and 15 minutes from the house and a bit of a slechp since you have to drive out through the delta to get there.  The delta roads are narrow and rough but the views of the Sacramento River delta are totally worth it.

Wave Rider 18's

I picked up a pair of Mizuno Wave Rider 18’s on massive sale from Road Runner Sports on-line the weekend after Thanksgiving but when they arrived I discovered that one of the shoes had the wrong size insole in it and there was a gap between the end of the insole and the toe of the shoe.  My toes don’t really rest there but I could tell that it would drive me crazy and I would end up trying to grip the insole with my toes while running.   So back they went.

In addition to the insole issue, the Wave Rider’s were also way too wide for my foot.  I admit that my feet are narrowish but I was slopping around inside the shoe and it would have been blister city.  I tried the Wave Riders in a smaller size thinking that it might be the fix but they were too short and I could see the potential for black toe nails.  I don’t like black nails unless it’s nail polish.

So instead I exchanged the Wave Riders for Brooks Glycerin 12.  I was a bit disappointed since everyone has been raving about the Wave Riders but I want the right fit not what everyone else is doing.

Brooks Glycerin 12

I would have loved to have the Blue to Pink Omber ones but they didn’t have them in my size so I got the blue ones instead.  If these work out for me I might have to order a second pair in the Omber because they were super cute.  I mean after all I might be the girl who spends more time in running clothes than real clothes but I’m still a girl and girls like cute shoes! (Ignore the sterotype, please)

I wanted to go hog-wild in Road Runner Sports and buy out the store but since it’s close to Christmas I tried to show restraint.  I basically grabbed my new shoes and ran out the door to avoid spending any additional money.  But they did have a ton of really cute running clothes and different fuels.  I could have broken the bank in there.

Starbucks - Holiday Cup

So after the running store, I was headed back to Sacramento when I realized that I would have to pay toll to cross the bridge on 160 from Antioch back toward Rio Vista.  It escaped my mind that the Bay Area will let you in for free but if you want to get out you have to pay.  So I popped into the closest Starbucks for an Americano and some cash back.  This chick never has cash, so I decided to sacrifice (yeah right) and get coffee.  When I changed jobs last year, I gave up having coffee out because I wasn’t commuting anymore.  We don’t even have a Starbucks in my town (but if they’re reading this, I know the perfect spot where they’d get ton’s of business) so getting coffee out is a real treat now.

Antioch-Bridge

This bridge is really high but you get some amazing views as you drive over but $5 to get out-of-town is crazy!  It’s highway robbery, no pun intended.  I was so glad to get out of the Bay Area though.  The roads were so jam-packed even on a Saturday.  I was glad to return to my sleepy little town.

What I did Instead

Since I’m not really running, I spent most of my weekend knitting socks and watching sports (Alabama is in the College Play Offs!!) and movies.  I watched Looper with Bruce Willis and Joseph Gordon Levit, if you haven’t seen this movie you should.  I really enjoyed it.  Joseph Gordon Levit does not look like himself in this movie at all.  I had to google it to see if it really was him.  Emily Blunt is all good in this movie.  I love her in general.

Here’s the weekly recap for last week.

Weekly Recap - 12-1 - 12-7

I hope you didn’t hit your head when you fainted at the low mileage.  That’s right folks, 7.25 miles.  I ran 3 days.  I haven’t run that few days since I started running years ago.  But I’m cool with it.  The shins aren’t going to get any better if I don’t let them heal.  It’s hard but I’m doing what’s best for my body.

I have no specific plans for this week other than to run a few low mileage runs to keep everything ticking a long.  December is now the month of rest.  I’m just doing what I want.  We have storms that are predicted to be pretty bad (for California) coming in later this week and if they’re windy like the last one was, I won’t be running on those days.  Since I’m not in training for anything specific, I’m not going to kill myself to run in bad conditions.  It just makes sense.

Happy Monday!

My most recent race was on November 22 and it did not go well…not at all.  Despite the amazing California weather we’d been having that Saturday dawned cold, rainy and very windy.  I don’t know what the wind speed was but it was enough to rock my car while I was on my way to the race.  It took me over 2 and half hours to finish but I did finish.  I thought several times about just giving up (ususally while running with a headwind).  It was horrible.  Enough said.

This is the face of someone who is very miserable in the first couple of miles.
This is the face of someone who is very miserable in the first couple of miles.

I’ve sat at home and thought about what I wanted to say about this race and other than saying that it was horrible, I couldn’t come up with a single positive thing about it.  I didn’t like the course, I hated that the pacers weren’t marked as to what pace they were running and I hated the weather.  It just wasn’t a good race.  The only up I could think of was that I didn’t quit and I finished.

I'm only smiling becuase I'm done and my mom is stading right at the end of the chute.
I’m only smiling becuase I’m done and my mom is standing right at the end of the chute.

So now I’m without a training plan and no race in sight.  This race was so horrible that I’ve been considering whether or not I want to run half marathons at all anymore.  Not to mention the injuries.  Pulled groin, shin splints and weird aches and pains.  It’s been a hell of year.

For the month of December I will not have a training plan.  I’m running what I want when I want.  It’s December 5th and I’ve only run 7 miles this month.  My shins are still bothering me and I really want to take some time off from running to heal without taking any real time off.  For now it’s a wait and see type thing.

Getting Race Ready…

IMG_20141120_172012

I’m doing laundry and trying to prep myself for a race that idea looking like it’s going to be wet and cold on Saturday. Fingers crossed that my shin splints are going to be ready for me to run…even if they’re not, I’m still running so they better get ready.  With any luck I’ll stick with the 2:15 pace group.  If not, I hope to not be far  behind.  As long as I can finish, I’m happy.

I haven’t run in 5 days.  I’m pretty sure that the only reason I’m still sane at this point is because I’ve done everything possible to stay super busy.  I’ve cleaned my kitchen and my dinning room from top to bottom, did the floors and ran the vacuum cleaner.  I took the dogs to the vet and dyed my hair.  Today is the first day that I haven’t been going non-stop.  It feels good to rest but it’s also giving me time to think about the things that could go wrong and it’s making me nervous.  I’m trying not to dwell.

Tomorrow is race packet pick up day.  I’m planning to head over to Fleet Feet Davis after work.  One bonus of having a job with non-traditional hours is that I can avoid most of the traffic.  I like that part but other than that I hate going to Davis.  It’s alway impossible to find parking and since it’s a college town there are bicycles every where.  I’m afraid of driving where there’s a lot of bikes.  I’m scared I won’t see them and hurt someone.  But I’m willing to risk it because race packet pick up in Davis also means Dutch Brothers Coffee.  I always treat myself to a cup anytime I’m in Davis.  And with this weather it will be a real treat.

Cross your fingers for me, I’m racing on Saturday!

Anyone else racing this weekend?

What’s your favorite run brag?  The time you got a new PR when you didn’t expect it?  Running a favorite race?  Disney?