35 minutes before the race, I awoke from my nap in my car, by the start line. I pressed snooze. 5 minutes later, I snoozed some more. Eventually, I got up with just enough to lace up my shoes, go grab my bib, and get to the starting line.
I took it really easy on this race. In the first mile, a large block of Marines came running through, doing their running cadence.
I kept up with them for… not long. But I did enjoy running with them while I could. They were inspiring the runners around them. We were all trying to keep up while taking pictures and video.
After they passed, I slowed down, and noticed a number of adorable kids in this race. (Don’t worry, there weren’t any 7-year-olds running a half. The 5k (and 10k) was mixed in with the half marathon.)
First, there was this little boy who started picking up all of the cups on the ground. His mom kept saying, “Henry. Henry! You can stop picking them up, honey. Other people are gonna pick these up. Come on, Henry.” It was so cute! He really, really wanted to keep picking up the cups. I was gone before his mom had convinced him to stop picking up cups. Maybe he just stayed there until they were all in the trash. Who knows? He was very determined.
Not long after, there was this little girl who saw and incline, and while jumping up and down who said, “Mom! Look. Where there’s an uphill, there’s a downhill!” Her optimism was sweet. (Even though her statement always true for races, depending on the course.)
Probably around 6ish miles in, there were tiny, young siblings in competition with each other to see who get to a cup the quickest when someone dropped one. They looked as though they were having the time of their lives.
Back to non-kids, somewhere around mile 2, a few women running with dogs passed me! I did not realize dogs would be running in this race. Luckily, I didn’t get eaten.
I happily wore my PureConnects today. They’re breaking in well, getting more and more awesome.
(Skip this paragraph to avoid hearing about gross stuff – specifically a blister. (Sorry!) (You’re welcome for not putting up a picture.)) I still ended up with a blister on the bottom of my foot! That might be the worst place to have a blister on your foot. It was huge. And was covered by a callus. I popped it. Now there’s a big hole of skin where it was (ew). (I know. I shouldn’t pop them (even though I love to). They’re nature’s band-aids.) Now, I have a teeny blister growing within the hole left by the last one. My feet are a mess. (But my shoes are still awesome.)
In the second half of the race, we wound around a paved path on a trail. Runners around me started talking about snakes. I thought they were being silly, but I saw plenty of signs about watching out for snakes. Later, I even heard the sound of a rattlesnake. I never actually saw one, but it was odd to hear the sound in real-life nature. I’m so used to hearing it in a sound effect bin at work (on Swamp People).
Someone had written “Big Ring Century” about a billion times in chalk on the road throughout the race. It sounded like a realtor or something. About the hundredth time I saw it, I was finally curious enough to look it up on my iPhone. You can tell I don’t ride bikes enough (read: ever (other than that one bike race).) Of course, century referred to a 100 mile bike ride. Mystery solved.
In the last 4 or 5ish miles, there was a woman who was going around my speed. She passed me once. Once she passed me, she started jogging a little. She may have been doing this for her own personal gain, but since it started right after she passed me, I assumed it was directed toward me. You want a race? It’s on like donkey kong, now!
I sped up, and passed her. Later, she got fairly far past me as I talked to a woman doing her first half marathon. I politely excused myself to catch up to this woman we could still see in the distance. Caught her. Passed her. I won our little race that we may or may not have been having.
At the finish line, a local beauty queen (in her tiara and sash) put the medal on me. I took another short nap in the car, then headed back to LA.
I finished with an extremely laid back time of 3:45:46.
I’ll be kicking butt and taking names in San Diego this weekend!