Dallas Half Marathon Race Report

I signed up for the Dallas Half Marathon in 2013, but the race was cancelled due to bad weather! We didn’t get refunds, but instead, got a discount on registering for 2014. Also, if we ran 2014, we’d be able to pick up our medals from 2013! No-brainer– I signed up as soon as they sent us the discount email.

Unlike the small race from the prior week, big races require waking up ridiculously early the morning of, but on the up side, they have race expos! I drove up from Houston Saturday morning (couldn’t skip Rascal Flatts playing at the company holiday party Friday night!) and in the afternoon, went to packet pick-up and explored the expo, picking up a few items. Also, I signed up for the Plano Balloon Festival Half Marathon in September at a discount!

IMG_1523Pre-race: I stayed at a friend’s place overnight in Lower Greenville, since it’s a much shorter drive from there than from Plano! The morning was going relatively smoothly, until I got close to the race and realized I had no cash for parking.  Shit.  I ended up finding street parking and did the Pay by Phone option, after coming up short on change to put into the meter. I waited until 30 minutes before the start to leave my car. I thought I would have plenty of time to go to the bathroom and then meet up with some friends, but I was wrong, lol. I waited in line for 15-20 minutes to go to the bathroom. By then, the corrals were so crowded that I wasn’t able to maneuver over to where my friends were standing!

IMG_1530Race: After running RunGirl 13.1 last weekend, I decided to take this one easy. Glad I had decided that, because turned out I was a bit dehydrated and had minor side cramps going on! Walked EVERY water station, and thus, the pretty varied paces in my splits. It sprinkled lightly during the race. Wasn’t too bad except that it made the roads a bit slick and I had to tread carefully.

Around the last 1/4 mile of the race, the first place marathon runner came running by! I was prepared– stopped to snap a shot before finishing the run.


Official time: 2:07:28
Pace: 9:44

IMG_1544Definitely much slower than last week’s race, but I’m not beating myself up over it! Picked up 2 extra medals after the race and then walked probably a mile to get back to my car! It was rather tricky getting over there with all the sectioned off areas for the race & post-race party! I headed back to my friends’ place, showered, and we went to True Food Kitchen for lunch, followed by much-needed coffee from Ascension Coffee. =)


ABB5k & Expo!

I’ve been terribly neglectful of my blog, so a lot has happened, including marathon weekend!

Saturday morning, I was alarmed to feel the very beginning stages of getting sick.  NOOO! I’ve been training for forever (months) for this weekend and I was determined to race.  Last year, I was sick for over a month before the Houston Marathon and made the tough choice to defer my spot for this year!  I would do my best to stay as healthy as possible and the ABB 5k would be a good test.  It was a bit chilly out– around 50, so I wore my Nike running jacket, a tank underneath, Nike tights, and my headwarmer.  Forgot my gloves, oops. I met up with Tim, Becky, and Aydee shortly before the start of the 5k and ended up running the entire race with Becky.  We didn’t bother trying to weave and had a lovely chat while we ran!

Official Time: 32:52
Pace: 10:35/M

Mile 1: 11:04
Mile 2: 10:42
Mile 3:  9:46

The last 0.18 was at a 8:37/pace.  I like to speed up for the finish!  Haha, I think that might be my slowest time for a 5k.  No big, just a warm-up for the real race tomorrow!

Another mile and 4 parking lots later, I finally grabbed my cc and license and returned to George R. Brown Convention Center for packet pick-up and the expo.  I love expos! I snagged $50 Ravenna’s, Nike shorts, and Nike tops from Luke’s Locker as well as some Nuun and the complimentary Nuun water bottle. Oh yes, and I got my bib & shirt for the marathon. 🙂

Sunny San Francisco Part 1!!

Having arrived in San Francisco Friday night, I had a full Saturday to rest up for the race on Sunday.  Naturally, I did nothing of the sort, and instead, walked around the city for 7 hours.  It was my second time to visit San Francisco and I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to explore!

I arrived with plenty of time before my dinner plans on Friday night so I wandered to a coffee shop and people-watched!

Interesting observations:
* double date with all 4 wearing fake mustaches
* Asian guy with a box on his head (both his hands were full)
* a guy drove up to the intersection and got out of his car just to take a picture

I finally met up my friends from my hometown, Sarah and Daniel, at Piperade for dinner. I normally wouldn’t drink so soon before a race, but I figured a glass of wine wouldn’t hurt, right?  Dinner was good but it wasn’t as good as I expected.

Starting from Alice’s lovely apartment in North Beach, I wandered over to La Boulange to do more people-watching while enjoying a smoked salmon egg sandwich (YUM!) and a cappuccino for breakfast.  Alice recommended the place– it’s her regular coffee stop.  Next was Chinatown for delicious egg custard. Golden Bakery was closed, so I pulled out my phone and yelped the next best thing.  Seriously, I’m extremely thankful for my phone.  I would have looked much more touristy with a map in one hand and BART/MUNI schedule in the other.  It would probably take also take me MUCH longer to get anywhere. Luckily, AA Bakery was close by and after shelling out $1.00  for my egg custard, I was satisfied.

Next, I bused it to the San Francisco Marathon Expo! Picked up my race bag, tech shirt (love it!), bib, pace bracelet; bought official SF marathon arm-warmers for $25; and explored the many vendors.  It was either a 2:00 pace or a 2:15 pace for the bracelet, so I grabbed the 2:00 pace bracelet.  That was my ultimate goal, sub-2:00!  Not likely, but doesn’t hurt to try, right?  I purchased $30 polarized sunglasses too– I’ve been meaning to get some for at least a year!  I tried on some Newtons as well, but I’m definitely not going to need any new shoes any time soon.  I just love going to race expos.  There’s just this exciting energy and even though there’s all these strangers, you feel connected to them because we’re all there for the same purpose: to run!  Love it.

After walking back and forth between bus stops, I eventually caught the right bus and made my way to the Ferry Building for some food! By the way, CRAZY lady on the bus, saying inappropriate things to no one in particular.  It made me very uncomfortable.

Anyhow, ended up going to Boccalone for salumi, Miette for macaroons, and Pepples Donuts for a mini doughnut!  I wanted to try more but I was pretty full from eating earlier.  Also, phone battery was dying and my legs were starting to get tired from all the walking…uh oh, need to take it easy before the race!!

I rested up, watched the Olympics, and waited for Alice to get back so we could grab dinner together and load up on some carbs.   I set out all my race stuff for Sunday and set my alarm for 4:00am.  Unfortunately, I didn’t end up going to bed until close to midnight.  Eeks!