No nonsense at the moment. I’ll just get right to the recap. How nice of me, yes?
I totally forgot that yesterday was National Hug a Runner Day. Did you know that?
So let’s just consider the fact that I won’t babble on about our daily happenings (yet) a group running hug for all of us. He he.
The Big Sur Half Marathon is now one of my favorite races. It just might be THE favorite actually. It was perfect. Everything from the location to the course to the scenery to the after party, you name it, it was awesome.
Here we go.
I started the morning doing “my job” and instead of getting ready in a proper manner I was standing in line getting necessities for the family (who were all still in bed at the hotel).
Luckily I had my racing outfit laid out the night before.
Purple Handful sports bra, Halo Hairbands (two because one just wasn’t enough), Mizuno Breathe Thermo Wind Guard Gloves, Drylite Jinx Sports Top, Drylite Maverick Split Shorts (my favorite running shorts ever), Pro Compression socks and arm sleeves and Wave Sayonara shoes.
I had never raced in Wave Sayonaras before. I’d done a couple faster runs in them on the treadmill, but was curious to se how I’d like them in a race. Um, yeah, I ended up loving them. I usually wear my Elixirs, but they are being discontinued so I thought I better try out something new.
I have to say, the one really nice thing about having a hotel within a mile to the start line is being able to go directly to the start and not having to worry about finding a port a potty or checking a bag, etc. This race has quite a few hotels really close to the start and finish. Love that. Also love that the family can’t have a excuse to not meet me at the finish since it was within walking distance and all.
Oh hey- ready to go while everyone was enjoying their drinks in bed. Ha ha.
I left about 15 minutes before the start. Cutting it close as usual. When I got there I realized I had quite a long way to push through to get to my starting corral.
After saying “excuse me” a bazillion times and dropping my phone twice, I made it.
I didn’t have too much time to think about things before the start. I was in the first group and just wanted to be ready to run instead of fumbling around the first mile or so like I usually do.
I was feeling pretty good. I wasn’t sure how fast I could really go since I haven’t pushed myself in a race since the whole hip dysplasia thing. I figured though that I was going to go for it and see what happened.
I don’t check my GPS at the beginning of races. I feel like it plays with my head too much. I just take the first couple miles to feel the race and see how my body does.
Since I was in the first group the time clocks we passed were pretty right on so I had a grasp on how fast my pace was.
When I finally checked about mile 4 I was at a 6:53 pace. I was pretty consistent with that pace from mile 5-10 or so (I think).
The course was spectacular. Pretty quiet at some parts, but beautiful and “freeing” in a way. I just wanted to run like the wind. Most of the course was by the coast and flat. The roads were closed to any traffic and there was plenty of room for the runners.
At one point close to the start we ran through this tunnel where it was pretty dark and there was a bagpipe player. How awesome is that?
We ran through Cannery Row (where we had been the day before) and then along the coast until the turn around.
I’m usually not a fan of races that have a turn around, but this one wasn’t too shabby since it was on the coast and it was at mile 8 so we were already over half done. It was fun to see all the other runners out there too that you don’t always get a chance to do with races that are point to point.
I tried to keep up my pace after the turn around and was still feeling pretty good.
I had a GU at mile 7. They had plenty of water stations along the way too.
Six months ago everyone was telling me I’d never be able to run again. Six months ago I was not in a good place.
My poor hubby and the boys had to travel with me and put up with my training schedule for months, so if I didn’t go all out and get darn uncomfortable I would have feel guilty.
I wanted a comeback. I know I’m supposed to run, I know it in my heart, but I wanted to see if I’m supposed to run fast again.
Well, I did the best I could. I slowed down a little at the end because that’s what I do darn it. (One of these days I’ll get a negative split.)
I finished in 1:31:25.
My second best time ever. Pretty darn close to my PR of 1:30:49.
With a huge smile and a Handful stuffed with gloves. Ha. Yeah, I thought I would need gloves, but it wasn’t as cold as I had anticipated so that’s where they were the entirety of the race. Pretty classy.
Speaking of classy, check out all the photo bombers below. Hands in the air yo!
Ha ha. And yeah, I took just a few pictures at the finish line so I can delete the bad ones.
And just one more without the gloves in the shirt.
I got 5th place in my age group (out of 685) and 23rd out of all 4624 females.
I found the amazing race director, Julie Armstrong, pretty quickly at the finish line. She does a such a great job with these Big Sur races and is so helpful to all the participants. And she has twin daughters. Just saying.
Then it was time to find my main men.
I can’t describe the joy and happiness of seeing them after the race.
Love them so darn much! Luckiest mama on the planet. Yep. That’s me.
They heard there were goodies at the finishers’ tent so they insisted on accompanying me.
We met the nice Christina on our short walk to the tent.
The finishers’ tent was pretty darn awesome.
First of all they were handing out boxes to fill with the goodies. Brilliant.
Oh and the spread they had for us was the best-
apples and bananas
grapes and pretzels
fresh baked cookies
and a variety of drinks.
I picked up a little something for everyone.
We had some time to kill before the awards ceremony so we check out the boats and the sea otters by the finish.
STUFT Daddy brought my some dry clothes to put on and even a new pair of gloves. What a guy.
Then we headed to the real party.
Obviously the first stop was for the free beer.
Gotta keep the man happy.
After waiting awhile away from the crowds,
right about when Andrew went to make a business phone call, it was time to get my 5th place award.
The boys and I barely made it up there in time.
There was no way we were missing our chance to stand on stage to get Mama’s plaque though.
Too bad I didn’t get 1st place. This wine was looking mighty good. Someday…….
And one more thumbs up for the walk to find breakfast. (I already wrote about our amazing brunch here.)
And that my friends, was one heck of an amazing race.
One heck of an amazing family trip.
Hopefully one heck of an amazing start to a great running and racing comeback.
I am truly blessed.
Thank you Big Sur Half Marathon for having us. It was a blast. We can’t wait to come back!
That was a bit of a lengthy recap friends. Sorry.
Oh and we still need some Mizuno questions for their annual meeting with the heads of the brand. Leave your questions on the previous post so they get them!
Have a good one!