So I have been the worst blogger ever — I am overdue for two race recaps (which I realize no one really cares about but I mostly write for myself anyway so whatever). I guess if this is technically at least partly a running blog I should share with the world when I actually, you know, run.
This past Saturday I ran the Lexus LaceUp Half Marathon in Irvine. This is a new race series put on by Lexus and Equinox — there were races earlier this fall in Ventura and Palos Verdes, and the series finishes out this weekend in Riverside. I was privileged to be selected as an Ambassador (so my race entry was comped), but that will not color my review or my experience.
I didn’t really set out to PR or anything — I didn’t really train for this because it had never been a “goal race.” Oh yeah, and I flew to Vegas that afternoon. Soooo my priorities were more along the lines of not dying rather than to gun for a PR. Of course, I can say that to myself as many times as I want but as soon as the race is off of course I was trying to hang with the 1:30 pacer for a few miles. COOL GILLIAN.
The field was itty-bitty:
I ended up letting them go a couple of miles in and quickly realized I was DEEP in no-man’s land. Literally, no one was around me almost the entire race which made trying to keep low-7s nearly impossible. Around mile 4 or 5 I decided to wave goodbye to any PR dreams and just hang out at a comfortably hard training pace. So glad I made that call.
The course itself was very favorable — it was almost entirely on a bike path, but it was also boring. Irvine is already boring enough, but there was almost nothing to look at and very little crowd support. I am so glad I made the decision to treat it like a training run because it was mentally tough slogging through those monotonous, solo miles.
The splits (aka a primer on how to literally run slower every mile)
Mile 1 – 6:39 –> NO GILLIAN. WHY DO YOU ALWAYS DO THIS?
Mile 2 – 6:55
Mile 3 – 7:17
Mile 4- 7:14
Mile 5- 7:29
Mile 6- 7:41 –> humbling realization that today is not your day
Mile 7- 7:42
Mile 8 – 7:37
Mile 9 – 7:40
Mile 10 – 7:38
Mile 11- 7:30
Mile 12 – 7:36
Finish 12.85 miles: 1:35:21 //7:25 pace
Although it was a little annoying the race was short (I think they likely didn’t account for the tangents on the bike path), I was not bummed at all. I would have been bummed if I was on pace to PR, but since I was 90 seconds to two minutes off, I was happy to call it a day a little early.
This was not my best race by any means, but it was a nice reminder that they can’t all be amazing “oh-my-god-this-is-incredible” experiences. As my Dad said during our post-race debrief: “it’s like an International Friendly soccer match. Sometimes two teams just get together to play a game. They don’t all have to be the World Cup.” WORD.
Overall, I REALLY liked the race experience — it was a small field (250 people ran the half. I was the 6th woman and 2nd in my age group. See, tiny) so parking and packet-pick up was an absolute breeze. The size of the field made the race more challenging (I FEED off having other people around me during races. And also pretty much all the time). The sponsors were top-notch, and there were free brunch options at various food trucks. This race is also awesome because the official charity partner for the race was none other than Back on My Feet – I am unsure how much was donated but it’s great they recognized BOMF and likely spread the word and helped to raise awareness.
The race started right on time, and there were also 10k and 5k options. A few of my homeboys came out and ran the 5k and 10k — and they made fun of me for being less than thrilled with my performance. Love them.
So ultimately, I was impressed by Lexus LaceUp and would run a race with them again, but maybe not this exact course.
Way back on Thanksgiving Day, my mom and I ran the Conejo Valley Turkey Day Dash together in Thousand Oaks over at Cal Lutheran University! I’ve done this race before (in 2012 with my old friend Hannes). In 2012 I finished in exactly 22:56. This year I did the same thing in 20:56, so that was exciting. My mom has gotten a lot faster since she’s been SERIOUSLY training for the LA Marathon, and she finished in 31:21!
Mile 1 – 6:26
Mile 2 – 6:42
Mile 3 – 7:11
5k total: 20:56//6:44 pace//2nd in my division.
ONE DAY I will run negative splits in a race. ONE DAY.
Another fun thing about this race is that it’s super local — I spotted a few people I knew from high school. The COOLEST thing though was finally meeting Emily @ Haute Chocolate Runner in person. (Making friends through the internet? Not weird at all). Anyway, she crushed her FIRST 5k ever. Now if only I can use her legs in an eventual BQ attempt…
So that’s the race news for me — and I don’t have any races on the horizon (typing that made me freak out, I need to get something going STAT).
Anyone have any fun races coming up in Jan or Feb?