I hope everyone had a fabulous weekend! Random, but did you know that most people are depressed on Sundays? Probably because of the stress that might come, but a reason to celebrate Monday 🙂
My Friday night was quite low-key. After attending a rather uninspiring alumni networking dinner (hm, dinner of Swedish meatballs, spinach turnovers, stuffed mushrooms, and wine? Yeah no.), I hung out with Alexis. We attempted to go see the Great Gatsby but when we arrived at the theatre, we found it was sold out! Instead, we drove back to school, picked up a scoop of ice cream from the local creamery and called it a night. My friends were out and about at the local “Rave Run,” but I decided a little TV time on the couch was necessary to prep for Saturday.
So, what was Saturday? Well, I ran in my 7th half marathon! I love looking up new races and let’s be honest, when I sign up for races, I am a tad more accountable for my workouts. Eh, maybe not, but I like to think I work out more 😉 It was the Mermaid Half Marathon put on by the South Bay Mermaid Series and was located out in Fremont.
The alarm was set for 5:45, but of course I would wake up much earlier. After putting together an unappealing bowl of oatmeal, brown sugar, applesauce, and banana, I changed, got my gear together and met my buddy Claire outside. She was such a doll and volunteered to drive us (along with our friend Carolina) to the race. Picked up a coffee along the way, retrieved our race bibs, and spent some time stretching and chatting.
Free products and swag are AMAZING. I was actually really happy with the t-shirt selection. Normally the dri-fit shirts are a bit too snug, but this one was just right. Not to mention the wide selection of porta-potties. Runners – you know understand this greatness 🙂
The race started around 8 and off we went. There were also participants present for the 18-miler, 10k, and 5k, but the waves were scattered throughout the morning. The course was completely flat and wrapped around a reservoir and then out and back along a river/bike path. I’m not the biggest fan of running and looking at the endless stretch ahead of me, but it was fun to experience a new course. I also decided to play games in my head in terms of counting mileage, racing against other runners, and so on. There’s only so much that music can do for you and 13 miles. I was surprised at how fast I was able to run for the first 10 miles. After not really training and absolutely no speed workouts, averaging 7:45 isn’t half bad in my mind. Although, when I hit mile 10, I thought the muscles above my knees were going to seize up and I would have much rather collapsed. I’m pretty sure I was imagining all the worst case scenarios. Do you ever do that? I’d feel BEYOND guilty for giving up, but it never stops me from brainstorming what would happen. Of course, it also served as another mind game. I didn’t really grab any water or Gatorade during the race, but did eat part of a gel before mile 10. I was hoping it would give some oomph to my aching calves and sort of did the trip.
Sure I probably could have added a few more songs to my music playlist, but I was running out of inspiration and creativity of good pump up songs. But, it was all meant to be because as I rounded the final corner of the Mermaid Half Marathon race (that seemed to go on forever…such a tease), I was listening to Train’s Mermaid. Perfect, right?
The mass amount of people finishing the 10k and 5k made it a bit difficult to finish strong. There was quite a bit of weaving that occurred, but I was proud to say I almost ran a PR – 1:42.21. I’d call it a PR for running solo because the last time I ran that fast, I was chasing after my sister and her two high school xc buddies. Also, may not have been stick thin like the first couple finishers or even Kara Goucher, but like I’ve said, strong is the new skinny and not bad for 12th place finish overall.
Each runner received a necklace charm (note above) but since I am choosey about my jewelry, I decided to put it on my car keys. That way it will actually see the light of day 🙂 I also was awarded with an adorable blue hat for winning 2nd in my division! As my sister put it, the benefit of entering small races 🙂 Ah, other benefits include FOOD, free samples (although coconut water was out 😦 ) and some stretching/massage tables. The same crowd that was hogging the finish line was focused on grabbing as much free food as possible (bagels, cream cheese, muffins, strawberries, and bananas). I managed to obtain a chocolate chip bagel with cream cheese/strawberry cc and banana to satisfy my stomach.
Overall, a VERY successful morning, we headed back to Santa Clara. Originally we were planning to go out to lunch, but between our stomachs being in knots, the extra two hours spent waiting to get massages, and our pure exhaustion, we decided to postpone our adventure. Spent the rest of the day doing homework, napping, and dinner out with my friend Katie. It was sort of a splurge at In N Out, but I figure once in awhile is alright.
It probably was the most complex order (protein style extra veggies, cheese, grilled onions; black and white shake; and fries extra crispy), but was delish and left me in a food coma.
There aren’t any races (besides Bay to Breakers) in my future, but will probably keep training. There’s also a chance I’ll stumble upon a race or two this summer. Are you training for any races?
“Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later, win a little more.” – Louis L’Amour