Is it possible to get Honorable Mention in a competition that doesn't exist except within yourself? I attempted to do the B-Fit B-Day Challenge last week since my 27th birthday was on the 16th.
The Challenge called for a 2-mile swim, 27-mile bike and 7-mile run. I did the swim on Saturday morning with Carrie and Toby .
We did a Shores-to-Cove-to-Shores swim in La Jolla. After starting the excursion by passing a seal funeral (several seals surrounding one that didn't seem to be moving. A funeral was our best guess.), crawling over a veritable island of seaweed, and then rolling with 10 to 12-foot waves, we made it back to shore for my first open water swim of the year.
Tuesday, I biked in to work and then biked home for a total of 34.6 miles. But then came fulfilling the run portion...
I don't like that part. I ran for about 38 minutes on Thursday, but that's it. At my pace, that's about 3.8 miles.
So I didn't even make it to bronze level in the Challenge. I guess there's always next year. The real worry is Wildflower. I need to start doing some long jaunts if I'm going to have the stamina to do the 10K at the end of the race. It's hilly, could be hot, and will definitely be hard.
Oh, and I have to beat Luke. Otherwise, it's going to be a loooong drive home...
I now realize my delay in posting about the results of the OC Half-marathon is actually a metaphor for my performance on that day. Slow is the operative word here.
I did finish, though. Heck yeah.
But let's look at the stats:
Out of 5,251 finishers of the half-marathon, I was 1,867. Emmy was 1,234.
Men: 1,247 out of 2,618; M25-29: 110 out of 182
Total time -- 2:14:06, Pace: 10:14
Women: 344 out of 2,633 (!); W19-24: 41 out of 186
Total time -- 2:03:08, Pace: 9:24
At about mile 8, I was struggling. Emmy was trying to pull me, but I was having none of that. By mile 9, she was 10 yards in front of me. She turned around and I waved her on. I tried to say something like "Go get 'em." But she swears I said, "Ggggoeeem," with a phlegmy accent. It was rough.
Our training definitely prepared us to finish the race. However, I don't think I'm cut out for pushing a run of that distance. Actually, I don't think I want to try to be cut out for pushing a run of that distance. The training runs (with the exception of the long run with Toby and Joe Decker) were kind of boring when they went over an hour and a half. I had a hard time getting psyched for them and I think that kept me from really working in the Zone 3 and 4 areas that would have upped my finishing speed.
Both Emmy and I had a 10K split of 55:19 (an 8:54 pace). That was right on target of where we wanted to be and actually faster than the 10K we ran in March 2007.
That's kind of encouraging. I have Wildflower coming up in May, and training for that is going to include intervals and hills. Lot o' hills (thanks ActiveX!).
But all in all, the race experience was fun. We got to stay in the hotel, hang out at the expo, see some of Orange County you won't see on the E! Channel. It was a learning experience and it's always fun to push myself to a limit and then persevere through it.
Well, I'm two just about two days away from Sunday's OC Half-marathon. Newport Beach to Irvine in 13.1 miles. It'll be the longest run I've ever done. Emmy and I have been training since November, using one of Gale Bernhardt's plans.
I basically did nothing over the Christmas break week. I pulled a muscle in my back on Christmas Day--probably from the red-eye the day before, but it didn't happen until I was washing dishing (Dad, I blame you).
The long runs in the training program have been a trip. Getting used to them was tough. At first, running an hour was a huge accomplishment. Then it was an hour and a half. Then it was two. Pre-Christmas, Emmy and I joined Toby and Joe Decker (awesome guy, new Active Expert and World's Fittest Man to boot!) on a three hour lap through Los Penasquitos Canyon. Whoa. Yeah we walked the hills and stopped for ten minutes halfway through, but still, it was three hours. We covered 13 miles, running most of it.
I think we can do it. Our goal is two hours. That's just under a nine-minute per mile pace. There's a 60% chance of rain for the race, but that's ok. We're from New England. We're hearty.