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Yesterday I ran the 13.1 Los Angeles Half Marathon in Venice Beach.
This race was not planned for me, I was lucky and I won a free entry for this one.
It was just 3 weeks before Surf City so at first I had decided not to do 2 half marathons so close to each other but I will not turn down a free entry so of course I did it!
Saturday we went to Venice Beach to pick up the race packet. It was at a gym, no Expo, very simple. I got my bib and a nice tech shirt.
If you read my previous post you already know that I dedicated my race to Sherry Arnold. I pinned the bib I mad with her picture on my back. Thank you to everyone who joined me, I know Terzah did in Houston. She got a 6 min Marathon PR! Congrats Terzah!
The start was at 7 am so that meant getting up pretty early. I got up with major sinus congestion so that sucked. Allergies are back and meds are not working great. When we got there we decided to have Bill drop me not too far from the beach and that he and the kids would not come to the start, it was too crazy around the starting area. So I went looking for the porta potty and found huge lines that were not moving and also cars trying to park in the middle of all those lines. That was the PREMIUM parking. CRAZY.
I made it to the start right on time but at the back but that is OK. The race started 15 minutes late, I don't know why. We started on the beach and had lots of homeless people lined up to watch the runners pass. The weather was perfect for me. Overcast and in the low 40s.
First 5 miles went fine, I was going faster than I should have and convinced myself that I could hold this pace for 13 miles. Since this one was a "practice race" for Surf City, I thought I would see if I can, how else can I know if I don't TRY? Around mile 5.5 I saw my family and I tossed my gloves and armsleves to the kids.
Not long after that I started feeling a sharp pain on my pinky toe, like I had a cut or something. I ignored it for a while but it was not going away and got worst. I had to stop to take a look. My nail was broken but was still attached to the toe. The broken part was pocking the side of my toe and that was causing me that pain. I "cut" the nail off and got back on the course. Waste of precious time :(. I had checked my nails the night before like I always do and all looked fine to me after the toe inspection.
After mile 6 we got off the beach and back on the road. That part was not flat but not terrible. I was still feeling OK. At around mile 9 or 10 we pass the sewer plant. You read that right. I don't get it. Why do they have the course go there? The smell was AWFUL. My stomach is the worst as you know, it can barely tolerate food. Now sewer smell....yeah not so much. I tried to hold my breath, that did not work of course and only gave me stupid side ache. The turn around point was not far from there so I knew we would pass the plant TWICE. Crap. Second time I went in full dry heaves mode. I had to stop for a second to get things to calm down. After that I could not take anything to drink and I had to walk a few times because of dry heaving. I know lots of people have complained about the sewer and I hope they will change the course for next year. This was the first year that they had the course go in the area.
Finally the end came.
I thought about Sherry a lot during this race. This woman I have never met, this woman I will never forget.
So no PR, one nail intervention and 2 sewer interactions does not lead to a Caro PR (or PW!). It is OK. I am happy I did this one. I would do it again if the course changes. This was a smaller race, about 3000 runners, and I like those better than the huge ones, the people were nice, the weather perfect and check the medal, the 13.1 spins:
Good thing I had packed a warm jacket and hat for after because I was FREEZING!
6 Half Marathons done for me in less than a year! I need a Medal Hanger for these!
This one was for you, Sherry Arnold, I hope that you are peace and that you did not suffer.