Sunday, May 25, 2008

Seabiscuit and Me

An easy 3 miles on Tue, 1.2 miles on Wed, and a long run (*) of 9.6 miles on Thu that felt like a breeze completed my week of training before a Saturday race: the Low Tide Run, a 4-mile run in Long Beach. The course? “A beautiful beach Low Tide out and back run on hard packed sand near the water”.

The day started with pouring rain and in the low 50's. My hubby asked me if I really wanted to do that... I told him: "well, the only problem is that with the rain the sand is now going to be wet…" He didn't think my joke was funny. For a Seattleite that is used to run in the rain, who cares...?

The rain stopped @ 7:45. The race, scheduled at 8 am, was delayed by 15 min because the logistics giving the numbers was a mess due to the rain. The sun showed up and the temperature stayed in mid 50's so IT WAS A PERFECT DAY...

My bib? 128. Guess what? It's my daughter's B-day 12/8, but it was not mere coincidence. They were going to give me 127, and I asked "can I have next?"

The course was not bad at all. The sand was really hard packed and it was easy to avoid the water, however there were a couple of spots where the inevitable happened, and my shoes got soaked.

About mile 2.5, two ladies (mom and daughter, I believed) passed me, and then they started to distance from me… One mile before the finish line they were really far. Competing against myself, I decided to play a race game, “I’ll catch up with them”. So, all the silly thoughts that you can imagine went through me…

  • “They are in my age bracket and are in 1st and 2nd place…If I pass them, I win”
  • “I am Seabiscuit, I just need to get a little bit closer to beat them…”
I sped up and started to shorten the distance, they seem far though. I kept speeding up, and got closer and closer… one tenth of a mile before the finish line I passed them. I felt like Seabiscuit running his last Santa Anita Handicap…

My official time was 40:48 for a 10:12 pace, and third in my category.

Placement: Division: 3/10 - Overall Female: 50/131 - Overall: 114/221

Not bad at all…It's the first time a run a 4-mile race, so a new PR in my pocket.

Like the race was 2 miles from our home, I ran an easy 2-miler going back for a total week of 19.7 miles.


(*) I started to slack with the long runs as the longest run this year before this week’s was 8.3 miles and five weeks ago…

In addition, in two of the last three weeks I did only one run a week of 5 miles, so I thought there was no chance on doing the SeaFair Half. I changed my mind after this Thursday 9.6 miles where I felt so "fresh" when finished. Actually I could’ve kept going but I needed to get back home... I remember last year feeling destroyed after long runs. This week it was a breeze...So, I'll definitely do the half on June 28th.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Alejandra, You Are My Inspiration

How to spread the news?

My daughter got motivated again and started running daily at about 5:30 am to beat Thailand's heat. Guess what. Since I got to California on the 8th I have been running every day at about 3:30 pm. Do you know what that means, right? That our feet are pounding the ground at the same exact time 7,440 miles apart. Our plan never got so in sync.

Then she mentioned she was training for a 5K, but like there was no race around her town, she was planning on running one day as if she was in a race. The day she picked for her race was June 21st. I got speechless. I happened to register in the Komen race for the cure which will be in Seattle on the same day. What were the odds?

I remember all of you, blogger friends that participated in the virtual triathlon, and that you got your bibs and ran from different places on this planet. As I would love she has a bib, I suggested her to prepare her own bib and use the same number I get for my Komen race. It was a deal!!!

She gave me so much inspiration that I wanted to race right away. I searched yesterday on Internet for 5K in SoCal, and lucky me, the Palos Verdes Marathon, 1/2 and 5K in San Pedro was going to be held today. Just 10 miles from our home in Long Beach.

So, without mental preparation, I got up at 6:15 am had my daily yogurt and cereal and went with my hubby to San Pedro. I had my late registration and got my 7008 bib. I was ready, with no watch, no ipod, and no butterflies. It was nice to feel so calm.

At 8am the race started, I crossed myself, and went up the only hill of the course, maybe 0.2 miles. The view was gorgeous with the ocean below. Before mile one I felt really hot. It was 74F/23C and I am used to Seattle's weather where 60F/15C and sunny is already warm for me. At mile two, volunteers handed me a cup of cold water which I emptied over my head. At mile three we went down the hill, and I had a nice sensation when I saw the clock. I could make a sub-32. I sprinted faster than usual, and I got a 31:54. Five exact minutes below my PR. I was a happy runner. I rephrase it, I am a happy runner!!!!

Thanks to my Alejandra, you are my inspiration.

PS: They clocked randomly. The girl that crossed the finish line seconds behind me received a sticker with her time: 31:57. When I asked about my sticker they said they were doing that to random runners. So I am not sure if they will have the results for everybody. I cared at the moment but got over it.

PS2: I just checked the online results and I show 32:02, and 4 persons behind Michelle Blackmore who I believed finished behind me (the 31:57 girl). I am fine, is not that I am going to get hung up for 8 seconds. I am changing my PR to 32:02 as this is the official time. If that's what they say, that's what I take. Still, I am really happy!!!

Division 8/36 (ain't bad!!!)
Overall 249/573

245  6/27 2044 MICHELE BLACKMORE 47 F LONG BEACH 31:57 10:19
246 18/44 2146 MONICA GOMEZ 32 F HAWTHORNE 31:58 10:19
247 15/23 2069 DAVID CAVAZOS 43 M CARSON 32:01 10:20
248 11/34 2327 SHAUNA RAUPACH 35 F SAN PEDRO 32:01 10:20
249 8/36 7008 LIZZIE LEE 51 F 32:02 10:20

Below the pix.
The Ocean View pix belong to Palos Verdes Marathon,
Half Marathon and 5K