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La Jolla Half Marathon Recap and Reminiscing

La Jolla Half Marathon Recap and Reminiscing


Hi! Hope you’re weekend is treating you well.

You’re going to have to deal with a little reminiscing before I get to today’s race. Hope you don’t mind.


I’ve ran the La Jolla Half Marathon at least four times. I don’t exactly remember, but you only have to hear about the most recent three.

Two years ago (April 2010) I ran the same race with the boys being almost four months old.

Things were a little different. I even had to do a little breastfeeding in the car right before the race.


Ha ha.

I finished though with a pretty decent time four months post partum.

2010 Results: Finish: 1:52:55  Pace: 8:37

Women: 282 out of 3156

F 30-34: 64 out of 638


Mom even made me some cool signs and I think this was the first race ever Andrew came to (probably for the free breakfast while I ran).



Last year I ran it again and actually mentioned it a little bit in my second ever blog post here.

Once again everyone got to enjoy a fun little breakfast while I raced.


2011 Results: Finish: 1:43:21 Pace: 7:53

Women: 58 out of 3205

F 30-34: 13 out of 648



This year

I went for a different racing outfit (thank goodness), got a new PR and finally got my darn name on the leaderboard.


You see it on there? Number 7? Yippee!

Here’s how it got there.

Let’s start with last night’s dinner. Roasted broccoli slaw with some tempeh and whole wheat pasta topped with marinara and just a little crushed red pepper. Probably not the best idea, but I love my spice.


This morning I was up bright and early to take care of a few things (like multiple trips to the bathroom and taking unflattering pictures of myself in pajamas).


I was sure to make time to put my extra set of padded Handful sports bra inserts in my racing shirt.


Priorities. I’m just going to say that those extra $10 for these were very well spent.


Originally I wasn’t going to talk food at all since my last post was all about it, but I just can’t help myself and I’ve already ruined it anyway by showing you last night’s dinner.

I changed up my usual pre-race sandwich (banana and peanut butter) this morning and combined it with the sweet treat breakfast sandwich.

Here’s what it was:

My favorite bread, a little peanut butter, a little sugar free jam, 1/3 of a banana and 1/4 cup egg substitute (mixed with a Splenda packet, cinnamon and a splash of vanilla and cooked in the microwave).


All pressed together and slightly toasted in my sandwich maker


with a little help of course.


You’re welcome.


Since Grandma D and Papap were here to help load the boys, I took advantage by taking another picture of myself


and of the middle of the deliciousness I had just created before 6 am.


The car ride was pretty exciting as usual.

photo car


Don’t they look excited? STUFT Daddy lucked out this time and couldn’t come with us because of something called “work”. I think he was pretty upset.

We got there with 30 minutes to spare. That might be a record for us.

Here was my racing outfit.

(Photo taken in the Denny’s parking lot- our drop off spot where I can actually use a clean bathroom.)


Mizuno Elixir Shoes

Lululemon shirt and shorts

Handful padded inserts (inside shirt)

Halo hat

Timex Women’s Ironman watch

Amphipod race belt

cheapo sunglasses from who knows where


After the picture taking, some quick diaper changes and use of the Denny’s bathroom, I pushed my way up to the front of the pack at the start line.


Hmmm. I guess my phone doesn’t photograph very well when in my classy ziploc cover. Oops.

The race was good. Luckily it stayed overcast the entire time. It was a hilly course, but the downhill parts came at all the right times. For the first time I used my iPhone for the half marathon, specifically because I wanted to use the Nike+ application where they tell you your distance and pace per mile. Loved it.

I also intended on taking picture along the way, but I just can’t make it happen. I don’t have the skill. I hate holding things and can barely get my hands to cooperate for my GU gel around mile 8.

Mile 12 (and the stinking hill the last mile) snuck up on me. Before I knew it though I was done.

Why yes, that was me asking a stranger to take my picture because my family was no where to be seen.


After stocking up on as many freebies as I could hold (unfortunately there weren’t many at this race)


and asking quite a few people if they saw “a couple with a big obnoxious yellow stroller and twins”, I finally called Mom to see where they were.

I found them and forced Mom to put her great photography skills to work.


Ha. Love ya Mom.


They missed my finish (and all parts of my race actually) because they were off eating breakfast and looking at the sea lions by the water. I guess that’s way more exciting anyway.



A new PR of 1:34:09 and I finally made it to the top five in my age group.


“Who cares. Breakfast and the sea lions were much more fun Mom. Plus your glasses are crooked.”



When we got home life was all about some of Coach’s STUFT Hooligans. I made them green and substituted half of the pancake mix with 2 tablespoons of coconut flour. Then topped them with some butter spray and sugar free syrup (goodness knows I’ve got a lot).


I also got some electrolytes with some expired Ultima.


I think it expired 12/11. Should be fine still right?


I won’t bore you with my other food courses throughout the day (there were about 2 more and I’m about to have another one), but I will give you a little inspiration talk.


I used to not be a runner. I hated it. It hurt. It was boring.

However, I always wanted to be that girl that ran all the time and liked it. I stuck it out long enough that at some point I started to love it. Somewhere along the way I also got the racing bug. I was slow when I started racing. But, after doing a couple triathlons here and there I did my first half marathon in 2006.

Once I started racing and realized what a little training and commitment could do, I was sold.

I’m not sure why. I’ve never been really great at anything (except for eating). I’m a pretty average athlete who has always had to work hard at sports. But, running is different.

It’s my therapy, it’s my inspiration to keep going, it my reason to keep pushing myself to see just how much I can accomplish and  sometimes I like to pretend it’s my job (that would be my ultimate dream).


As my time has gotten a little faster over the years, I’ve been telling STUFT Daddy that I want to place in the top 3 someday in my age group and get a prize. His response is the same every time:

“You just need to work a little harder I guess.”

(It’s said with a sarcastic tone, but it’s always the same. Well, that or “You just need to go a little faster next time.”)

Love that guy.

Today was a milestone for me to make it on the leaderboard and to place on the top 5 in my group. No official top three or anything yet, but darn it, I’m going to keep trying.

Maybe my race next weekend will be the one.

Ha ha ha!


I am a true believer that you can do anything you put your heart and mind into (just like Ronald Miller said here).


Is there something you’ve always wanted to achieve? I’m curious.

Okay, I’m off to spend the evening with my men (and some wine and chocolate).

Don’t forget to enter my Coach’s Oats Pancake Mix Giveaway. This stuff is amazing!!!!

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  1. 1
    Brandy says:

    Congratulations, Kristin. That is quite an accomplishment! You are awesome!

  2. 2
    Erin says:

    Woo hoo! Way to go Kristin!! You will definitely be Top 3 soon. You can do it! 🙂

  3. 3

    You rock, Mama!!! That’s a phenomenal PR. I think you will crack the top 3 very soon. Enjoy your wine. You most certainly earned it!

    My dream has always been to run a full marathon but there was always something that came up so I couldn’t make time for it. Not anymore! I’ve realized that dreams are what you make them. If you want something go for it. It’s right there in front of you just waiting!

  4. 4

    HOLY MOLY GIRL – you are a FAST Stuft Mama!!! I’m so excited for you and only a little jealous. 🙂 Congratulations speedy!!

  5. 5
    Kait says:

    Amazing job!! I ran this half for the first time today – those hills are no joke! Keep rocking it! 🙂

  6. 6

    Congrats!!! That is an amazing accomplishment! 😀

  7. 7

    Look at you, Speedy!!! Congrats on the 7 spot. I’m totally impressed… and I have NO doubt you’ll break the top 3 soon!

  8. 8

    Congrats!!! You are super speedy!! I’d love to place even in my age group in a race sometime soon! Maybe a 5K 🙂 I also want to run a half marathon this November but I certainly won’t be placing in that..I’ll consider it a huge win if I’m smiling at the end!

    • 8.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      Maggie- Smiling at the end is a HUGE win no matter what place. 🙂 Just getting out there and doing it is huge too. 🙂 You should totally do a half marathon in November.

  9. 9
    Becky Przy says:

    You rocked it! Awesome job! You will get in the top 3, no problem…I love your determination and drive.

    I wanted to run a marathon and be a mom–I did that…so maybe be a mom of 2;-)

    I DNF my 2nd marathon this weekend so that was tough (thats an understatment). So my new goal is to work on my speed and get into 5k’s for a while and let my body rest a bit, hopefully (I am horrible at the ‘moderation’ thing).

    • 9.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      Becky- Sorry about the DNF. They’re always another race though and a better day. 🙂 Hope you’re feeling better about it now and are letting your body rest a bit. Maybe it’s time for that #2????? he he.

  10. 10

    Congratulations, Kristin!!! That time is truly amazing!
    I love what you said at the end of this post, about struggling to “be a runner” at first and the you now love it. A lot of days I still feel like I’m in that place where I want to love running, and I like it now, but maybe if I just keep challenging myself I’ll grow to truly love it!

    • 10.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      Yes Danica. I tihnk if yo ukeep setting goals for yourself or make it something you enjoy you’ll love it. Don’t get me wrong, there’s days I don’t love it (like today on the treadmill), but it’s MY time. I can sort through thoughts and see what my body can do. 🙂 A good movie on TV always helps too. He he!

  11. 11

    That is awesome! Congratulations! I was the same way- hated running. Then I entered my first race and got the running bug! I am nowhere near as fast as you and never will be because I just don’t have the motivation to train, but I love running and love getting faster as I do. You are so fast! No wonder you get invited to run marathons for free! I ran Big Sur relay today. I ended up running 16 miles. It was nice- lots and lots of hills, but much easier than 26 miles! You need to do Big Sur International Marathon some time. Most beautiful run ever!

    • 11.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      I totally want to do that race someday. nice job on the relay and tackling those hills. 🙂 Hope you’re recovering and resting and getting excited about summer!!!! Yay!

  12. 12

    Awesome job!! Way to rock it!

  13. 13
    Corrina says:

    You are such an inspiration!! I would love to qualify for Boston some day. I am WAY far from that, but I know with enough time and work I could do it…and I hope I do someday.

  14. 14

    congrats on the pr and leaderboard! I’ve never run La Jolla (oddly enough) but plan to next year to Triple Crown. You’re so fast, I’m impressed!

  15. 15
    Robin Baker says:

    Great job mama, so proud of you! I’ve always wanted to do a half…I’ve trained a few times but I keep getting pregnant, lol!!! Maybe when I’m done procreating…

  16. 16
    Jessica Jones says:

    Wow your time was amazing!!! Congrats! I’m pretty sure you will have your name in the top 3 in no time! Just keep pushin girl!:)

  17. 17
    Jennifer Murphy says:

    HOLY FREAKING COW! Absolutely amazing. Although I can’t say I’m surprised! I am so proud of you and love you!!!

  18. 18
    Beth Petrassi says:

    Someday, I hope to be a runner. You do inspire me, just don’t know for sure how to get started… It is so exciting to read about your accomplishments and seeing your results! Congratulations!! And keep up the great inspirational writings! You really have helped me to make some life-changing (life-saving) changes in my life – thank you!!!

  19. 19
    Tara K. says:

    Great job making the top 5! I ran my third 5k today (the last one was three years ago) and met my goal of finishing in under 30 minutes – 28:34 to be exact! My husband and 10 year old daughter also ran (her first run) and finished in 33:14. Go figure they both placed third in their age groups and I was 7th in mine. Ha!

  20. 20
    Miz says:

    You are my runningspiration.

  21. 21
    Amy says:

    Congratulations!!! And, I cannot believe that you ran a half marathon 4 months after having twins! How did you do that?!?

    I have always wanted to run a sub 2:00 on a half (way slower than your time..ha!). I am about to start working with a running coach to help me get over my ITBS (thought it was runner’s knee at first) and get me to training hopefully pain-free again.

    You are such an inspiration!

  22. 22
    Joy says:

    OH MY GOODNESS, CONGRATULATIONS!!! That is a serious accomplishment and you must be so proud.

    I want to run a sub-4 hour marathon in October. It will be my first marathon and after almost a full year of injuries, I feel SO SLOW coming back to running. But, I’m willing to put in the hard work and look forward to October.

    You’re an inspiration!

  23. 23

    I said it before and I’ll say it again – you AMAZE me!!! Speed demon!

  24. 24

    1:52?!?! that’s amazing by itself much less being a full time momma of TWINS!!!

  25. 25
    lindsay says:

    woman! you just get better with age. Look at those results. Must be all the chia. And yea for grandma and grandpa help. The boys look super excited. LOL!

  26. 26

    Holy wow speed-demon!! I’m super impressed! Way to knock out that race so exciting!

  27. 27
    Carissa says:

    Congrats on the PR! I love how you said “a little red pepper”…haha! I love spicy too!

  28. 28
    Sara says:

    Great post and congrats on 5th in your age group!! That’s amazing! Any advice for those who’d like to love running but don’t? Ways you helped make running hurt less? Thanks, Kristin!

  29. 29

    You are incredibly inspirational! Oh and you are a freakin’ machine!!! I wish I was half the athlete you are. Running is hard for me. I would like to just run 3 miles for fun and be able to enjoy it some day. This summer I’m going to run more with Jay and hopefully get to that point. Congratulations on your achievement! I am incredibly proud of you and so happy for you too!

  30. 30
    Sasha says:

    Wow – congrats!! So awesome! And I love the old photos of the boys. 🙂

  31. 31
    JennyV says:

    Love how genuine your smiles are after the race — pictures showing you are able to take pride in your run (not just because you’re crazy fast!!) but because you’re doing something you love. Congrats to you!

  32. 32

    CONGRATS!!!!!! That is such an awesome accomplishment :D. I’m so excited for you! And I love your lululemon top. I really need to purchase something from there haha

  33. 33

    Wow, congrats on a great run, and a really good blog post – loved to see the flashbacks to earlier runs, too.

  34. 34

    So proud of you! This is amazing and it’s fun to see pictures and stats from your previous times running it. That red pepper lit you on FIRE! 😉

  35. 35

    I can’t hold things either and I also suck at taking pics on the fly. I’ve always loved running because with just a great pair of shoes, you’re good to go. Of course I took an inexpensive sport and made it expensive with lots of stuff I simply cannot live without, but it doesn’t have to be pricey and I can take it anywhere. I never did an event until about 5 years ago. It was an aha! moment. THIS is why we train!! And I was always slow too. In the last year and a half I’ve shaved over 1.5 minutes per mile off my time without trying to do it. So now I think “Huh. Wonder if I could shave another minute per mile off??? How do people do that?”. With consistency and drive. I love the events, the packet pickup, the expo, the thrill of the crowd and the energy of my comrades. It’s incredible! I won first place for the first time 2 weeks ago at a local 5K. Standing on the podium was a thrill. All I can say is that I want to do it again. Push harder, dig deeper, find your strong!!

  36. 36
    Kathy says:

    I know you eat well and exercise a lot…so I guess that’s how we get arms like yours? Or maybe we need to have twins to carry around? (bummer…not going there…ha!)

    Thank you, thank you for inspiring me…the slower runner who has been at it for a year now…to think my goal is just to finish a HALF in 2 hours flat….I cannot imagine running what you just did! AMAZING STUF(T)!


  37. 37
    Marie says:

    Congrts Speedy!! Awesome time – and I love that you ran a half 4 months after twins- W.O.W.!!
    I’ve run 5 marathons, PR is 3:29, and bunch of halfs… am hoping to run another half in August- and as I type, I am nursing my 1-wk old darling little daughter. I am looking for some post-pregnancy running and training tips!! You are obviously the woman to ask! 🙂 any great core exercises?(are planks “safe” post-pregnancy? i know standard crunchies are not) Also, what about a great supportive sports bra?!! (i/ve always been a B, but thanks to breastfeeding, I’m now no longer fitting comfortably in my sports bras!)
    Thanks so much Kristen!

  38. 38
    Lisa says:

    Congrats! You did amazing! I am so impressed that you got in the top ten, you rock. I love the comparisons from last time to this year. And the green bars look delicious 🙂 I need to make myself some

  39. 39
    Laura says:

    Holy smokes, girl! That’s a HUGE pr… way to go!! Your hard work is definitely paying off. Congrats to you!! You’ll definitely get that top 3, you have the determination and the will to get you there!

  40. 40
    Holly says:

    Way to go – what a great race for you! I don’t know how you do it, but you rocked it and you’re an inspiration to all of us moms! Congrats! I’m running my second half next weekend…would love to hit something close to the 2 hour mark. I’m just not a speedy distance runner, so this would be an accomplishment for me. We’ll see if I can pull it out! Thanks for showing us how it’s done!

  41. 41
    Bonnie says:

    Congrats on the PR, Kristin! Wow…you certainly are fast – much faster than me! I’d love to see you in action moving that quick…and fun to get a glance at that race a few years ago too! What an amazing job. 🙂 And a new green food?! …you know I gotta get on that. 😉

  42. 42
    Denise says:

    You are a crack up! Down to earth, genuine, humble and flippin A-MAA-ZING! Congratulations on the PB…and I don’t mean peanut butter this time! HA!

  43. 43
    Amy C. says:

    Woooooo! Congrats on doing so well! You will be in the top 3 before you know it! I had a blast at the race as well!!!! My time was 2:11:46…..but am stoked since I was planning on it taking me about 2 1/2 hours (this was my first half)! You did amazing though! Way to go!!!!!!

  44. 44

    I read this immediately when I got it in my email – but was laying in bed and it’s hard to comment on my phone =) Just realized I never got a chance to comment yesterday!!
    CONGRATULATIONS!!! I love how nonchalant you are about the race itself – like yeah, I ran a 7:10 pace for a half marathon – no biggie. LOL. Seriously amazing. You will be in the top 3 in your age group – your improvement over the last 2 years is crazy. I’m amazed and inspired by women like you who come back harder and stronger after giving birth. (PS. Your hubby sounds like mine! HAHA) xoxo

  45. 45
    Amy says:

    awesome job congrats!! something ive been thinking about doing lately is a bikini competition (like bodybuilding stuff i guess?). im preggo right now so i think that would be awesome after the baby comes…never done anything like it but im sure it would whip me into shape!

  46. 46

    Wow! Congratulations.. looks like you worked so hard prior to the race to get that leader board spot.. nice job! I am moving west this June so I will have to check that race out for next year. I so related to your post.. I have twins and the same Bob stroller. I kind of felt like they were photos of myself! ha

  47. 47

    It’s my first time visiting your blog and I love reading this race recap. I run races too but I’m not too serious about it and I just put in minimum training (enough training so that I don’t get hurt) but I would love to place someday…someday I will get faster. I’m from Orange County and I have been curious what the La Jolla half marathon race course was like, thanks for the recap. Great job!

    • 47.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      Lea- that was me a couple years ago. I always said someday I’d place and definitely just did the minimal training. Kind of fun to actually do it. You will so get there!!!! You should come down to run Rock ‘n’ Roll in a month!!! 🙂

  48. 48

    I love this post. My sister ran her first half marathon over the weekend, and now I’m inspired to run one. I’ve never considered myself a “runner,” but if other people can do it, I can too, right??


  1. […] I had intended to get this done. Instead of getting a few extra minutes of sleep to recover from my race Sunday, the boys were up at 6:30. Since it’s they’re new thing to escape and all, they got out of […]

  2. […] poor legs haven’t fully recovered from the race last weekend which is making me a little nervous about this weekend’s race. Yikes. Oh well, I’ve got a […]

  3. He’s Back says:

    […] little quiet over here, that was why. He was on his way out of town while we were all on our way to the race last weekend. I’m just going to say that it was a little rough all on my own for five days. […]

  4. […] had the same breakfast sandwich as last week’s race. Maybe a little too close to the race start time though. […]

  5. […] top (padded with my extra Handful bra inserts- keeping it […]

  6. […] my mocha and my pre race sandwich (this time it had SunButter instead of […]

  7. […] The last time I ran it was at the La Jolla Half Marathon.   […]

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