A little less than two weeks ago I ran my fourth full marathon – RnR San Diego. It was a wonderful day and despite the fact the course is challenging and I went in with minimal expectations, I managed to PR with a time of 3:43:38.
I have an interesting history with this race. I did the half in 2012 and loved it. It was also the first place I broke the 1:40 barrier in the half. In 2013, I ran my very first full marathon on this course and it was a battle. The last 6-8 miles were a struggle and it was a huge learning experience. This time, I went in with a plan to just use this race as a gauge of my fitness and to get another 26.2 race behind me. I had trained for LA in February, but about a month before the race I developed pretty intense plantar fasciitis and opted not to race on that day. In the interim, I’ve ramped up my cross training (cycling and swimming) and resistance training through Tone It Up. I’ve also cleaned up my diet, and felt the difference on my training runs for RnRSD. I didn’t do a long run over 18 miles for fear that I would injure myself, and didn’t really follow a comprehensive training plan, so I wanted to start out slow (first 6-7 miles no faster than 8:30) and then get faster.
The night before the race I got dinner with some of my #DTLARunning guys – I wasn’t really nervous until we all got together and I realized I was going to be running for a long time the next morning. Woof.
I was lucky to stay just a block from the start line with my friend Ryan. We watched some frivolous reality TV which also helped keep my nerves at bay. And the best part? I recognized the first contestant on a Fox reality TV show from college.
Why yes, I was a big Loggy fan in 2010.
As I was unwinding, my #DTLARunning friend/training partner Alvaro messaged me and said he was going to pace me and that my plan of starting with 8:30s was stupid because I was going to get tired anyway. Gulp. We arranged to meet in my corral and he’d pace me. He is confident I have a BQ in me – but I did not want to put that pressure on myself at San Diego, knowing I was undertrained and also knowing there’s a beast of a hill at mile 21.
I met up with the #DTLARunning crew, found Alvaro, and we were off. I really enjoyed the first 10 miles or so, through North Park and Normal Heights. There was good crowd support and fun signs. Alvaro and I kept it sub-8 (on accident on my part, less sure about him) and we rolled into the half at 1:42. I listened to podcasts the first half, and then turned my music on as a “treat” later on in the race (yes I realize that sounds absurd, things get weird in my brain during a full mary).
I started getting a little tired around mile 16, in the Mission Bay area where the course got a little bit boring. I stopped to walk a few times here and there, but was generally just enjoying being out there. While I did get tired, I never felt gassed out or like I was experiencing glycogen debt. I also did not experience cramps or crazy charley horses (like I did in my last marathon).
The race went by quickly – all of a sudden we were at mile 20. And then that beast of a hill… We sped up the last mile or so and the finish really did seem to go on forever.
I was really REALLY happy with a PR on this course (and a 6-minute course PR as well). More than anything, this was the best I’ve ever felt post-marathon. I was a little sore for two days after, but was able to exercise and get my muscles moving. Definitely hungry now for a sub 3:40 and an eventual BQ.
After the race, I hung out with Alvaro and the #DTLARunning crew.
And then indulged with Ryan with mimosas and views of San Diego.
It was a great re-entry into the marathon distance and boosted my confidence at my fitness level right now. Even writing this made me feel those #endorphinwasted vibes I love so much.
On the fitness docket for me this weekend is a Saturday morning run with #DTLARunning and checking out the Shape Magazine Movemeant Foundation event, and a spin sesh on Sunday with Electric Flight Crew.
How are you sweating this weekend?