kick off the new year medal

 

23 down only 29 to go.

I knew it was going to happen at some point. I’m actually surprised it it didn’t happen sooner. Yes – I got lost during this race. The logical question would be, “How could you get lost on an out and back, repeated 3 times?” To which I calmly reply, “Shut the fuck up.” I got lost, not once, not twice but 3 times. I got lost in both directions. I’m still not sure how it happened.

Before I launch into my race report I have some news to report. We are moving to San Diego! We sign our lease and move in January 23rd. Last weeks race report was late because we were in San Diego apartment hunting. I told Tim that ideally I wanted to be within a mile of the beach. Wow, did he ever deliver. Tim found a 1 bedroom just a few steps from the beach. I am over the moon.

San Diego Apt Map

Our next 2 races are in OR but after that most of my race reports will be about CA races.

This was a very low key race. There was a race bib and a medal but no T-Shirt or chip timing. It was a bit chilly at the start but not too bad. I just wore my flannel shirt until the race started and was fine. Colder temps. are starting to feel normal to me. When I lived in Tucson anything colder than 70° would have called for hat, gloves, and complaining.

kick off the new year - us

I started, as always, running with Tim. It was soon clear to me that it was not going to be my day. My legs felt heavy and tired right from the start. I think the week was catching up to me. Besides the stress of house hunting and New Years Eve partying (Tim and I finished 3 bottles of wine) we didn’t sleep much because we had the loudest guy ever in the room next to us. The walls were paper thin. Not only was this guy loud but he never shut up. When he wasn’t having loud sex or fighting with his girlfriend he was having loud phone conversations with his friends about drugs, prison, and how smelly his girlfriends privates were (yes, really). Not only did he never shut up but he never seemed to sleep which meant we didn’t sleep much either. I highly advise anyone traveling to San Diego not to stay at the Biltmore in La Jolla. It will come up as the cheapest hotel in the area but really – don’t do it.

This entire run was next to the ocean and was actually very nice. I managed not to get lost on the first loop. There was a point where the HM went straight and everyone else turned. I managed not to get lost only by asking someone which way to go. It was marked on the ground but it was written so small I would have had to kneel to read it. I have awful eyes. Most people were doing shorter distances so I couldn’t just follow someone. Because it was on the Santa Monica beach paths there were lots or runners who weren’t in the race, and bikers. On the 2nd loop I realized that I was somehow on the bike path not the running path so I cut across the sand to get back on course. On my return trip I overshot the aid station turnaround. I ended up in the same parking lot as our car so I used the opportunity to put on some more Glide (anti-chafe stuff) and then found my way back to the aid station. At least I didn’t get chaffed this run. On my 3rd loop I went through an underpass that was not there on the first 3 loops. Besides getting lost by overshooting the aid station and being on the wrong path I also lost a lot of time standing still, looking around, wondering where I was and why I wasn’t seeing any other people with race bibs. On the last loop I knew something was wrong (I was on the bike path again) but I also knew that I would end up at the aid station if I just pushed forward. About half a mile from the finish I got a phone call from a concerned Tim. He had passed me on the first 2 loops with high fives and then didn’t see me on the 3rd loop. He came out to meet me and ran in with me.

The people who run this race are really nice. She told Tim that I was not the first person to get lost. That made me feel marginally better. They had the yummiest homemade muffins afterwards. If you live near Santa Monica check out A Better World Running, they do quite a few inexpensive runs in the ares. Although I ranted to Tim about how much I hated this HM and would never do it again, I’m reconsidering. They do a valentine run on the same course.

Cons

  • I found the course confusing
  • Sidewalk directions and arrows were small
  • Fairly heavy traffic on the boardwalk
  • No one at the turnaround (I saw at least one person cut the course)
  • Running mostly on cement (more if you get lost)

Pros

  • Run next to the ocean
  • Nice Race Directors
  • Friendly people at the race
  • Low key, relatively inexpensive event
  • Homemade muffins
  • New Years medal
  • Free online pictures

I guess I would recommend this race. I thought it was confusing (and I’m not the only person to ever get lost) but Tim had no problem understanding the course. I really should look at the course map before a race. I’m not sure I would call this race beginner friendly. There isn’t a lot of instruction and I think most of the people running were already familiar with the group. In fact, listening to people talk to each other it sounded more like a running group than a race in that everyone seemed to know each other. It was scenic as it was run next to the ocean. It was also interesting to see people out walking dogs, running, and rollerblading. I think I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that you can run on the boardwalk for free without aid because there are bathrooms and water fountains all over the place. But then you would miss out on the friendly high 5’s and the delicious post race muffins.

Please leave a comment or ask a question. It makes me happy.

2 Comments

  1. Michelle Abbey

    Omg, you guys live like right next to World Famous? Awesome! You have non-stop entertainment right outside your front door!

  2. I about fainted when I saw the difference in your running times, until I read further and realized you had been lost. It probably isn’t a bad thing to be lost at a beach in California! At least you always know where west is located! So happy that you two are going to be settling in by the beach, and in the most wonderful place to live. If I weren’t so happy for you, I’d been turning green with envy. It’s sure going to be interesting to follow your runs now that you’re almost Californians, and see what challenges lay ahead for you with your HM project! I’m still jumping up and down with excitement for your wonderful new adventure, and looking forward to seeing you both in the very near future!

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