OK so this was half marathon #5 for me. 17th and last race for this year.
The weather was COLD..no no not just California cold, cold for real: 41 degrees. Bill dropped me as close to the entry of the Fairplex as possible and I walked to the start alone. We had decided that it was best for Bill and the kids to skip the start and just find a spot along the course to see me. I got really cold while waiting for a mandatory bathroom (real ones! A+) and for the start.
There were a lot of kids running that race, they were from this great group called Student Running LA. The mission of Students Run LA is to challenge at-risk secondary students to experience the benefits of goal-setting, character development, adult mentoring and improved health by providing them with a truly life-changing experience: The training for and completion of the Honda LA Marathon. You can check their website here.
OK back to my race. This course was HARD. The most difficult I have ran so far. Very HILLY. Not just rolling hills. The first 2 miles and the last 2 were flat. That's it. I had seen the elevation chart, I knew it would be hard. I told Bill I would not PR and that I hoped to finish between 2:30 and 2:45 and I said if I go over 2:45 I will be in the worst mood and you may want to get a hotel room to avoid being around me!!!
First 2 miles were on the Fairplex ground (home of the Los Angeles county Fair), to exit we ran on the drag race track, that was pretty cool, they had a band there. That is where I saw the kids the first time. I am in the white hat, in the middle.
After that we ran near an airport and headed towards Bonelli Park. That is where all the hills were. For me, running hills is hard. My strategy was keep steady pace for the rolling ones and run-walk the big ones, that's when I drank. I carried my own water and I skipped all the water stations. They had plenty of those along course for those who needed them. I looked at my Garmin at mile 6 and I realized that I was way ahead of what I thought would be my split there. I started thinking that maybe I could break 2:30 after all. That gave me a huge boost. I still had hills ahead, I knew that around 7 or 8 there would be a big one. I kept telling myself just get to 11 after that you are good to go. At mile 10 I started to feel tired and showing signs of dehydration. I knew I was headed towards trouble, I tried drinking NUUN..that gave me major Acid Reflux....I tried water...that was a little better but I was close to getting a pukie....I was also on my way to getting a PR. I knew it would be close and now I wanted to get it. I started to think of numbers...how much could I afford to suck and still get my PR. That is how bad I was feeling. At mile 12 a huge surprise: Bill and the kids! I had no clue they would be there, I told Bill to be at the finish NO MATTER WHAT. When I saw them there I thought the finish line was too crowded. People were lined up for the last mile. THAT was so nice!
|I look like a giant next to the others!|
As soon as I turned the corner....I had to stop....I got sick..I did not want the kids to see me like that. (They didn't)
One more mile to go. I had almost nothing left. Thank God for the people cheering on the runners! And at the finish there they were: Bill and the boys!!! I was just about the walk when I saw them and no way I am walking in front of my kids.
I crossed the finish...(that is not my time...I started at the back of the pack)
And then... I collapsed
Some guy came just in time to catch me and put me in a wheel chair. AGAIN.
I did not stay in it long. Bill came to get me and I went to get a banana and water.
I looked at my GARMIN, I never stopped it. CRAP.
Bill said "You did great you crossed way before 2:30!"...I wanted to know if I had crossed before 2:26 xx. My PR was 2:26:39. I would have to wait to see the results online later.
I was feeling like crap. Darn stomach. I had lost a lot of salt again. I did take salt tablets during the race but my NUUN bottles were still almost full. Not good. My water bottle was empty. See the salt on my face...hard to see I guess...but near the nose..on the freckles..
I got a pretty snowflake medal!
I was so cold there...good thing I had packed some clothes to change...in this very stylish outfit..that's right Life is Good pj pants with Canadian flags!
They had this really cool trains exhibit there
We went back home, I was not feeling good at all. Could not eat for at least 6 hours. I had to lay down for 2 hours. When I got up I went to look for the results....and they were up...
I started looking for my name around 2:25xx hoping to see it there...no
Then I looked around 2:26, still no, 2:27.still no. On the picture Bill took the clock says 2:27xx so I thought they don't have my results, I did not touch the mat...
I typed my bib # to look it up and I saw that I did touch the mat.
2:24:05. That is my time. 2 min 34 sec PR. I could not believe it. It made all the pain and feeling like crap so worth it.
Merry Running Christmas to me!
I am so happy, saved my best race of the year for last!
Still time to enter my GIVEAWAY
Also had to include this......
EMZ: Look what I got today:
Sports Illustrated: Best Magazine ever....clearly they can recognize GREATNESS