Another half marathon in the books! This experience was VERY different from my other races, primarily because I was unprepared. My running has been intermittent during business school (I’m now in my 2nd year as a full-time MBA student at UCLA). I’ve only run 4 miles here and there at a pretty slow pace. According to my Nike Run Club app, I ran 6.6 miles in April, but, well, that was over 6 months ago!
I meant to downgrade to the 5k, but missed that deadline, so I decided to run anyway. How bad could it be?
PRE-RACE: Woke up at 4:45am. Thanks to daylight savings, it felt more like 5:45am! I ate a Dean & Deluca Matcha and Espresso Bar and a banana. Weather check: 58 degrees in Malibu. Headed out at 5:15am to make the drive and arrived around 6:00am, 1 hour before the start time. I pre-paid for parking ($5) and found a spot in the third lot. Used the porta potty, went back to my car, and stripped down to my short-sleeved shirt and shorts. It’d be around 60 degrees by race start and I could see that the clouds were starting to clear up. Uh oh, I want the clouds!
MILES 0-6.5: It was slightly chilly at the start of the race, but I knew that I would heat up quickly, especially seeing that the sun was coming out! I lined up between the 2:15 and 2:30 pacers, which meant a start in the second wave. By the time I started running, the sun was already out. I was already feeling hungry!
The first half was really not bad at all. There was a hill that I partially walked, but otherwise, I felt comfortable. The views of the Pacific Ocean were quite nice, as we were running along the PCH. I was, however, getting hungry, and started picking up a pretzel at each water stop. It was also pretty hot. I was regretting the choice to wear a short-sleeved– should have stuck to the no-sleeve shirt!
Around the half-way point, there were Honey Stingers available– yes!! I refilled my water bottled, walked, and finished my Gold Honey Stinger.
Miles 6.5-13.1: Shortly after the half-way point, my ankles started bugging me. Ugh, I blame the hard roads! I’ve been hiking more than running, so I’ve been spoiled by the soft dirt from the trails. I also wore my Brooks Caldera (trail running shoes), which probably were more suited for the trails than for the roads. Also, as the race is an out-and-back, once you hit the second half, you’re facing the sun. In summary, it was hot, my ankles hurt, and I was hungry.
The rest of the race was really just me trying to force myself to run, despite my ankles bothering me. I kept reminding myself that the sooner I finished, the sooner I could eat. Although another part of me thought, I might as well walk– it’s not worth the ankle pain. At some point, the 2:30 runners passed me while I was walking. I thought about running with them, but decided I was cool with walking, haha. I was really dragging in the last 2-3 miles, although, in the last mile or so, there were sections of the road with a dirt shoulder, which felt MUCH better on my ankles. I really should look more into trail racing again! While some of the runners around me seemed very tired, I was mostly just annoyed with my ankle pain and wanted to be done.
I managed to run the last 0.1 miles of the race, but up until that point, I did a ton of walking. I felt pretty lame, but I knew it was probably better for me to take it easy!
POST-RACE: After getting my medal, I picked up water, a slice of watermelon, some coconut water, and a chocolate milk. I didn’t stick around too long– I was really looking forward to the leftover Ethiopian food in the fridge at home!
Officially, my slowest half-marathon! I think it’s my slowest pace for any race, lol. I don’t think I’d run another half marathon again without at least getting up to 6 miles. I’ve actually got three more races before the end of the year, so maybeI can redeem myself!
Malibu Half Marathon
Division (F30-34): 172/221