Another (incomplete) race

Registered for 50K, ran a (almost)marathon.

Does it matter that I was carrying 20 lbs on my back? Well, my back and shoulders thought so! And that the terrain was kinda run-unfriendly? super-sad-emoticon

Dahlgren Heritage Rail (in King George, VA) was a pretty decent race. There were ZERO hills! What!? And they had PBJ on the race course (may be that will explain why I couldn’t go all the way, too full to run – yes that’s a real condition)! There options at the end of the race, a medal or a koozy or a drinking glass. Guess what I took?

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Oh, and no points for guessing how far Ellen went. But the best part of her race (I’m guessing) was the fact that she finished just 15 minutes after I did, after running 6 additional miles!

20 days to go! Fuuuuuuucckk….

PS: Watch this space for a lot of whining on what I could not accomplish during this training season.

Tougher than the toughest!

Coastal trail runs is a Bay Area based group that organizes running events throughout the year. I ran one of their races, Lake Chabot trail run.

After running Blue Ridge marathon earlier this year, I was confident that the toughest race EVER is behind me. Not at all. I am not even gonna attempt to describe how tough this course was. The hills that felt like there needs to be a rope line to go up and down, the lose soil, the jagged edge of rocks sticking out….. OK, the things that are out of my control, right?

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(But the course was gorgeous!)

What about when I filled my brand new RaidLight Ultra Raid 30 pack with random shit the night before to make it heavier, or when I was too lazy to break in my new Altra Lone Peak 2.5 and had to run with it first time at the race, or when I didn’t spend time learn how to cinch(?) my pack to avoid doing the boogie-woogie bumble while flying down the hills. I have no one to blame but myself for not attempting run the second loop and shutting down the operation at a half marathon. Yes I was registered for a full.

Shout out to my friends Sona and Rajesh. Sona’s amazing home cooked vegan food is the reason, I think, I didn’t collapse half way through some of those fucking hills. And Rajesh, for putting up with my schedule, chauffeuring me around while having great conversations! And their kids are a hoot, love them. I’m gonna work on them to make them runners!tumblr_static_95p88l86si88ks4w4wws04wk8

And I had one of the best carb loading ever at Malabar, an Asian fusion, vegetarian / vegan restaurant in Santa Cruz CA!

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And I really earned this one IMG_3545.

And the free beers after the finish!

Destination Racing

July 1st. First day of the second half of the year.

I have run 6 marathons since February. More than that, I could not run 5 marathons and 5 half marathons that I registered.

In the beginning of the year, when I was freaking out about how to plan my training, my cool coworker (much appreciated, Deepa!) friend stepped in and created a spreadsheet for me that became an excellent tool to plan my training and keep my sanity in check. xlI carefully picked my races around the country, destination racing at its best.

Feb 15, Austin Marathon stated it all. When I told my friend Brittny H prior to the race, she goes “wow, that’s a hilly course”. I was like, meh,. But meh it was not. Plus I ran with a 12 lbs pack, for the first time. Long story short, I managed to survive that near death experience. Kudos to my poor (bro from anotha motha)friend RK, who took me straight to a vegan joint after the race where I failed to stuff my face with food, being too close to the end of a big race. But dinner was a completely different, feeding frenzy, story.

Next was my hometown race, DC Rock n Roll. My second fastest marathon to date, no pack was involved in this race and it was (mostly) a pleasant experience.

On to the next one which has a tagline “America’s Toughest Road Marathon” – Blue Ridge Marathon in Roanoke VA. And it was everything the tagline said it was. I had a tough time even walking up some of those hillsmountains. On the race shirt it says “You run hills I run mountains”. Hells yeah! BTW, my race partner *tricked* me into racing this. Sometimes I wonder if she has a death wish (growing-heart.png you Ellen download).

Ellen – this was her first marathon in ages (though she has done 2 multi stage ultras in recent years) and the first one this season. It was my third. Guess what, she had to wait for over an hour after she finished for me to catch up!!!

I am pretty sad about the ones I could not run – Golden Gate Headlands in north of SFO (course map below), Timberline (see the lake below) outside Portland, and Seattle Rock n Roll etc….

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“You never regret a run, you only regret the ones you didn’t”

That’s how I see it, after registering the slowest marathon to date. BTW, I heard this quote on Rich Roll podcast while he was talking to his guest, Robin Arzon. Two of my heroes!

I finished another marathon! 13343159_10154044050756886_843220479736512394_n

You are not up for a decent run, every time you go run. This one was hilly with one long ass continuous climb for more than 2 miles towards the end, with high heat and humidity. With one of my left peroneus(?) tendons screaming from start to finish, the only good thing (well, other than the feeling while crossing the finish line) happened, was all the compliments I got for my outfit.13417633_10154044050841886_525802991602645871_n

Also the dinner after the race with some Glenfiddich 14 (thanks Santhosh and Lekshmi).

Walking forever, the day after, exploring San Diego, was excellent, coupled with more good food and more alcohol. What was even better was saving all those beached red tuna crabs at Ocean Beach. 13346129_10154042221296886_7928804602156569631_o.jpgWatching them swim away when I put them back in the water was more satisfying than crossing that finish line, in many ways.