Pace: 10:14 min/mile
Pre-race evening and day of: I usually get major pre-race jitters, like I go into hibernation for the day before and just wait for the race to come. I am proud to say that on this racing eve I was able to enjoy myself. I met Tara and headed to the expo, which was super tiny, but I think that was expected. There were still many local vendors and familiar faces which felt great! I then had a brilliant idea to represent my high school by wearing our school’s colors. Best.Idea.I.Had.All.Weekend. (oh, besides the idea that I made to actually finish the damn race). I stuck to my usual pre-race meal of a veggie burrito, no alcohol, and lots of other proper hydration during the day. [this is key in a bit].
I went to bed at a good time and woke up at 7! YES. 7 am! What a gift to be able to sleep in for a race, hop out of bed, and walk to the Bart station that takes you to the starting line. I even got to spectate a bit since the marathoners were passing the Bart station. [More volunteers at mile 5 for marathoners would have been good, since you had one woman telling the crowd to go left, while the front runners were coming back in the other direction and didn’t know where to go!!] I met a woman from my running group and we headed in together. So convenient and I was feeling great!!
Race: Things went smoothly for the first two miles. I set into a good pace and was feeling great. Then a wave of stomach cramps overcame me and it literally sucked all my energy out. I am talking about the cramps where you feel your stomach constricts and turns inward. This also happened diagonal to my stomach so I am guessing intestinal area. Runners Worst Nightmare. My legs felt like they were so heavy and any pace felt HARD. This was at mile 2.5. I felt defeated by my own body and it was as if I hadn’t put the training in like I had.
I spent the rest of the race struggling. Gosh, how many times I wanted to just jump off. I even stopped my garmin because I was so pissed. These cramps came and went for a few miles, but in between them I just felt like crap. But what counts is that I kept going.
The atmosphere of the race itself was great. As a teacher, I experience Oakland in its “finest” moments, so it was wonderful to see the city come together this weekend to allow this race to happen. The spectators were great. There were the obvious inaugural hiccups that occurred and I am sure that if I wasn’t feeling like crap, I would have noticed them more. A lot of people recognized the school’s colors and you could see some visible excitement, which was encouraging. The crowd around Lake Merritt was unbelievable. Lots of people lined the streets for the finish too.
Post Race: I located Tara from the beginning and we redeemed our beer coupons!! Sweet. I mean, if I am going to pay X amount for a race entry, beers would be nice 🙂 We just sat out on the lawn and drank our beers. The area for the post-race events was nice. Initially it was congested, but it eventually thinned out.
- Why my stomach did what it did? I don’t know. I am going to track my eating and drinking habits before each run to see if there is a trend. If anyone has suggestions or has this happen to them, let me know. This is the second time it has happened to me.
- The race logistics itself went smooth for me (maybe that’s because I didn’t have to drive anywhere)! Transportation to and from was easy. I really enjoyed the race atmosphere and Oakland came together for the race. (Stunk if you weren’t a spectator and you were stopped in traffic though)
- I am proud I didn’t give up. There are other races and I will go out again – no worries.
- Today, the body feels fine! Little tightness in the IT, but I will roll it out.
- I completed my fourth half 🙂
How did your weekends go?