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2011 Nike Women’s Marathon: Race Recap October 17, 2011

Well, it was that time of year again!

2011 marks my SEVENTH time doing the Nike Women’s Marathon. I did the full in 2005 and then the half in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010. And here we are again! I can’t believe I’ve been running for 7 years.
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Irving and I drove up to San Francisco late on Friday night and arrived into the city at 1am. We fell asleep right away and woke up Saturday bright and early, just in time to hit up the expo as it opened.
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I have to say that after being at that expo 7 years in a row, the appeal has worn off. I’m not interested in the overpriced apparel, gimicky nike + promotions and hour long waits for free stuff. Nike has a captive, vulnerable audience and they’re not ashamed of taking your money and making it clear who their sponsors are. If you were a first timer, I’m sure it’s just as amazing as you’d think it would be. But for me, I think I finally got a little bored with it.

The best part? Seeing my friend Niki (who was running the full!)
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And getting free Keurig Coffee and Tea from their truck across the street (not affiliated with Nike).
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I grabbed my goodie bag and a few samples of Ghiradelli chocolate and left the crowds behind us in search of lunch.
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We met up with Irving’s mom and grandmother, who were nice enough to trek into the city to see us. We had a great meal together and hung out for the afternoon.
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After they left, we went in search of pre-race snacks and then hit the sack. We had an early wake up call the next morning! But since our hotel was LITERALLY right at the start line (we could see the corrals below us from the window!) we got to sleep in a bit longer! Score!
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Oh, didn’t I tell you? I had company this year! Irving decided to walk the whole 13.1 miles with me! I was so excited! I had fun showing him the ropes where to check our bags, how to fuel before the start and how to get pumped for the race.
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It was unseasonably warm this year! Didn’t even need a long sleeve at the start! (This was me in 2005… I had on two shirts and a trashbag to keep warm!

Anyways, before we knew it it was GO TIME! I told Irving to keep to the sides when we started or else we’d get trampled (since we were just walking it this year). But as soon as we started he took off running and it felt good.
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The surge of energy lasted about .2 miles and then we began to walk, but at a brisk pace.  We held a steady 17 minute mile for almost all of it.
This picture is so funny because everything is in focus except for Irving. haha.
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The miles were ticking by and we were chatting the day away. Irving grew up near San Francisco but we walked through parts he’d never seen before which was super fun.
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I love San Francisco. If I do this race again, it is because you just can’t beat these views.
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Oh, good morning Golden Gate Bridge! (There was ZERO fog!)
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A little while later and we were at Mile 12! You know what that means? CHOCOLATE MILE!!!
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Then we rounded the corner and headed to the finish! Here we come!
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Crossed the finish line hand in hand! (Can’t wait for the Pro Pictures!) And got my Tiffany’s Necklace handed to me by a firefighter in a tux. Mmm Hmm! (Oh, Husband is with me, darn!) Jk! Kinda.
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This was my 12th official half marathon (and 16th endurance race total). Whoop! Just Five more races needed towards my goal of completing 20 endurance races before I’m 30 goal!)

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Wanna see THE NECKLACE?
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Here she is! [FRONT]
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[BACK]
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Let me just add that to my collection of Tiffany’s Race Jewelry. This makes my heart happy. I’m so proud of these.
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The finisher’s shirt was pretty rocking this year. It’s a lightweight dri-fit and I love the yellow color. I actually don’t think I have a yellow drifit despite my huge collection.
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Official time: 3:45:51 (average pace of 17:14)
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Another 13.1 under my belt. done and done.

 

2010 Nike Women’s Half Marathon – Race Recap October 19, 2010

Filed under: Happy,Marathons,Races,Running — Kelocity @ 10:33 pm
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It was a rainy, wet, cool day in San Francisco, but 20,000 runners still gathered in San Francisco to run one the  biggest women’s race in the country. 🙂

But let’s back up to 4:30am on race morning! We took our time getting ready, making sure we didn’t forget all the little things you need to run a successful race (GU, timing chip, race bib, watch, etc).
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I put my Ipod on to make sure it worked… and you know what? It was completely empty! All the great songs my sister Mikaela gave to me were gone! I must have lost them when I sunk it up to my computer this week! How did that happen? I’m Ipod-challenged. Oh well, I can run without music.

We headed down to Union Square to the starting line. It wasn’t hard to find with all the crowds of people.

I only had to wait about 20 minutes until the race started (Score!) But then I realized one more thing…my Garmin was dead!! I had charged it the night before, but maybe I left it on?! This happened to me last year too, and it ruined my race. But not this year… I wasn’t going to let a few numbers get in my way of enjoying this!
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So I put my chin up and walked towards the startline. I didn’t have a goal in mind this year, so I was just going to listen to my body, enjoy the scenery and take in the race without staring at my watch.
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Let’s do this!

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The first mile wizzed by, I ran the first two miles straight without stopping. I watched Pier 39 go by as the sun was rising. I took a good look at Alcatraz as we ran along the bay.
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There was absolutely NO fog, which is pretty rare for a fall day in SF. It was gorgeous.

Then we headed up the teaser hill to Ghirardelli Square.
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And up the bigger hills in the Presidio.
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Then we saw the stunning Golden Gate bridge staring at us.
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I asked a spectator to snap a picture of me with the bridge, you get the idea.

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One of my favorite parts of the race this year was the many “Power Song” stations along the course. Out of nowhere, you’d hear blasting music coming from these boxes. It was an ad for ‘Nike+’, but I appreciated the bursts of adrenaline the loud music provided!
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Between mile 7 and 8 is the steepest hill of the race.
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But the views of the bridge are worth it!
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I’m not sure who these guys were, but they were quite funny.
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Another spectator shot of the bridge!
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Along mile 8 or 9, Kaiser had a bunch of motivational signs!
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And my favorite…

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And they provide oranges here (my favorite!)
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Mile 10 is definitely my favorite mile of the whole race. That’s when you start running down towards the ocean. The views are gorgeous! And Irving texted me at this point too, and it totally gave me a boost of energy!
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You can see finisher’s village from up there too!
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The last three miles are in Golden Gate Park. It started to drizzle when I entered, but I knew I was almost done.

I know this picture is blurry, but it just made me laugh. Why do marathoners LOVE running quotes so much? They make me so happy!!

“You measure happiness one mile at a time”!
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Almost done! Two miles left! And the rain had started to come down by this point. I was wet and sticky. Ew.
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At mile 12 is the Ghirardelli chocolate mile! They hand out chocolates to all the runners! I saved mine for later!
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Almost done! The final turn into home stretch!
Which side do you think I ran under? SURVIVOR!
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A nd then I booked it to the finish line! (Yea, I was SOAKED at this point)!

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And I’m not sure what came over me, but I made some weird pose when I crossed the finish line. It kinda looks like I’m doing the Hokey Pokey. Um??
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Either that or I’m making a “I’m #1” sign? HAHA

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Official Time: 3:03:18

Out of my 8 other half marathons, this is in the middle of all my finish times. Not the best, but definitely not the worst. Not too shabby for not really training.

Once I crossed the finish line, a lovely firefighter in a tux gave me a tiffany necklace from a silver platter!
(And Yes, I made him pose for a picture before I took it!)
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I got my mylar blanket and tried to warm up. It was FREEZING down by the ocean! I was so cold, I didn’t even wait in the photobooth line (and you know me and the photobooths!)
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We had to wait almost an hour to catch the shuttle bus back into the city.
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Once I was on the bus, I finally took a peek inside my goodie bag!IMG_0365

I felt like I was trick or treating gathering all my goodies after the race! You just hold out your bag and they fill it up with treats!
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The finisher’s shirt was pretty awesome this year. It was a technical tee, in a gorgeous magenta (my fave!)
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The necklace was different this year, it came in a longer box.
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With a new kind of pouch:
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Here she is!
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And the back:
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I heard a lot of people didn’t get the necklace because the ran out! I hope they get mailed to them soon!

That was my SIXTH tiffany’s necklace from this race! I now have quite the collection!
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And there you have it! Another successful year at the Nike Women’s Marathon!
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I Run to Be…

Filed under: Food,Happy,Marathons,Races,Running — Kelocity @ 7:15 am
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This weekend I flew up to San Francisco to run the Nike Women’s (Half) Marathon for the SIXTH time!! Here was where I ran my first Marathon back in 2005, so it will always hold a special place in my heart. Since then, I ran the half five years in a row. It was an excellent race!

Backing up to Saturday… the expo!

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My flight landed at 7:30a so I got there really early before the lines formed.

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I wizzed through the bag pickup, got a free massage and collected all the goodies before the crowds even got there.
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The bag check bags were awesome this year! The race is “going green” so it was a sweet magenta reusable bag!
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I loved the POM photobooth this year! Cheeeese!
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The theme at the race this year was “I Run To Be”
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I Run To Be:
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I Run To Be…ME!
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And yes, I totally wore my Boston Marathon gear all over the place on Saturday. Woot!

I headed over to Niketown after the expo to look at all the (overpriced) swag. I didn’t buy anything this year, my collection of running clothing is getting a tad bit out of hand as it is. 🙂
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On the wall outside the store, they have everyone’s names posted. I found mine!
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All six? floors of the store were decked out in marathon gear! (But I used self control and walked out).
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Who’s excited to run?!
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After I fully exhausted the expo, I met up with my friend Niki and we went off to explore San Francisco together!
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Lovely sights of the city
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We headed towards the Ferry Building to look around.

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Such a cute place inside. I hadn’t been in a few years.
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Later, we relaxed in the hotel that Niki (graciously) offered to share the night before the race.
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Then it was time to find a place to carbo load! We ended up at Olive, which ended up being a nice surprise. It was a really nice restaurant. It was a bar, but we stuck to water!
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Since the name of the place was olive, we got a bunch to share.
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And a few tempura battered ones too (for good measure).
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We split two of their thin crust pizzas (which were AH-MAZING).
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Now… it’s race time! Check back later for the official race recap!

 

It’s that time of year again!!! October 15, 2010

Filed under: Marathons — Kelocity @ 9:01 pm
Tags: ,

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This weekend, I will be completing my 6th (Yes, SIXTH!) Nike Women’s (Half) Marathon! At this point, I’ve been doing this race for so long that I feel like I just have to run! Every year I get butterflies thinking of the expo, the course and the TIFFANY’S NECKLACE! I can’t believe it’s here!

Seems like just yesterday I was at the starting line of my very first marathon!
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This time around, I’m doing something I’ve never done before… walking the entire course. I haven’t really been running as much as I should, and I don’t want to get hurt, so I plan on power-walking the whole 13.1 miles, while snapping amazing pictures like this along the way:
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It’s going to take a while, but I’m just so excited, I hope it does. It always goes by too fast anyways.

You can expect a full race recap next week (with lots of pictures)!

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And if you want to see my race recaps, here they are!

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

 

Wish me luck!

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Nike Women’s Marathon 2009 Race Recap! October 22, 2009

Filed under: Marathons,San Francisco,Uncategorized — Kelocity @ 12:00 pm
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Well it’s been almost a week since I ran my 10th (!!) long distance race. I was so excited for race weekend. I can’t believe it had been my 5th Nike Marathon race weekend. Wow.  Here’s my recap with all the ups and downs that come with being a runner!

I flew up to San Francisco on Saturday Morning. Irving drove me super early in the morning and I caught a 6:30a flight up. I tried to sleep a little bit, but I think I was just too excited. When we landed, I realized that the girl sitting next to me was also going to the Marathon Expo (Hi Crystal!!) So we rode the BART together to Union Square. It was so fun having someone to hang out with. We got our race bibs and explored the expo tent together!

The colors were super cute this year. Purple and Salmon.

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They put everyone’s names on a giant wall that is as big as the whole Nike Store. It took me forever, but I finally found my name!

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Niketown had some super cute clothes this year. I loved this half-zip hoodie. The color was actually a salmon-ish pink color. It looked so cozy!

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Niketown was packed as usual. The store is 5 stories tall! And almost all of the floors had Nike Marathon gear on them. They must have made a fortune!

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I signed this wall… not sure what it was for, but who doesn’t like to sign walls. ha! I signed small, it said “TEAM BOSTON!”

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I love this “Pose Like a Girl” background. It’s so cute! We got there before the photographer was set up, so we could take our own pictures.

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Then later, I caught up with Janet, and we had some professional ones done! (The picture itself is better quality, this is just a scan).
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Whoo Hoo!!!!
PS, I carried that backpack around with me ALL DAY!!!

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Who can resist “runway” photos. 🙂
The red bag on the right was our Swag Bag!

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Some of the goodies I got at the Expo. Say Yes to Carrots!

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We “run like girls!”
This picture makes me smile. 🙂

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Alex and I!
So sad she didn’t run this year. But she was with us in Spirit!

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My sister-in-law EJ modeling the awesome Nike Sweatshirt that we all love so much! Isn’t it so cute!

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Niketown!

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Noah and Janet!

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We have arrived!

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At the expo, Joan Benoit and Karen Goucher did a short presentation to get us pumped for the race. They’re both running legends. Joan is a Gold Medal Olympian and Karen is a World Champion.

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EJ and Sarah outside the Race Expo!

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Me, EJ and Sarah!

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Noah and Janet outside the Race Expo.

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So I was starting to get the begining pains of shin splints and I was getting nervous because I didn’t want them to get worse right before I start training for Boston. So I went to the medic tent, and had the trainer wrap my legs with tape. They did such a great job, but it was cutting off the circulation in my feet, so I took the tape off and figured I could retape them myself in the morning. More on that later!

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I had some time to kill before we left the expo, so I waited in line for an hour at the expo to have my nails painted. I picked “Team in Training” purple. lol

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Then we all took the BART to Irving’s mom’s house (where we stayed for the weekend!) We had a really nice carbo load dinner (with Pasta and Salad). Then we came home and got ready for race day! Per usual, I laid out all my running stuff. Can you believe that I carry almost all of this stuff with me when I run?

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We had to get up early, and I was up and out of bed by 3:50am!! That’s mighty early, but such is the life of a marathoner! But even with getting up that early, I still barely had enough time to get myself together. I just kept forgetting things and second guessing everything. I think I was just anxious? I just felt like I was missing something.

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We drove to San Francisco and took the shuttle bus to Union Square. It was sooo crowded. It was nearly impossible to move around! We used the bathroom in the JW Marriott to avoid the porta-potties. SCORE!
We had just enough time to check our bags and find our pace groups. I got separated from all my friends, and this is when I started freaking out. I turned my Garmin Watch on… and it flashed “Low Battery” and then just completely turned off! Without my watch, I had no way of tracking my pace and my intervals. I rely on that for my whole race! I wanted to beat my time and push myself. I was almost in tears with the thought that my whole race would fail because of this. But I realized that part of running is rolling with the punches and not letting outside things affect the run. So I took a few deep breaths, and found my awesome friend, Janet. She was so excited, and her positive energy totally set the mood for me. It’s not always about “racing”, sometimes, it’s about enjoying the company and the atmosphere. I’m so lucky to be able to run with a strong healthy body, and I wasn’t going to let some stupid watch battery change that. We decided to run together for as long as we could. It was the best decision I could have made, I wouldn’t have changed anything. Thanks Janet!

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Because we started in the wrong coral, it only took us 7 minutes to cross the start line! (Usually it’s like 20 minutes!)

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Around mile 2, I realized that I taped up my legs too tight, and my muscles couldn’t flex enough to run! So I stopped and ripped all the tape off.  It was so frustrating. I didn’t find my groove until Mile 4 or 5. Then I started to enjoy it more and more!

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Janet and I surged up the hill at mile 6!

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What a beautiful day for a run!

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Motivational Signs along the route!!

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The downhill at mile 9!!! WHEEE!!!!

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I love my Orange Skirt!! It matches my LA Racers shirt. haha.

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The course split around mile 12. YAYY SO CLOSE!

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I walked most of mile 12 because I was getting pretty tired, but I sprinted the last mile because i knew my PR was within reach. I grabbed my free Ghiradelli chocolate square on the way and shoved it in my fuel belt to enjoy later. 🙂
As I rounded the bend for the final stretch, there was a Pop Chips truck giving away free bags of chips. HAHA I totally snagged one.

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I ran towards the finish line and spotted Janet’s husband, Noah. He snapped this picture! (You can see my bag of chips in my hand. haha)

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The guy didn’t take my finishing picture, so I stood there til he snapped this one. HAHA

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I crossed thefinish line and got my tiffany necklace from these fine gentlemen in tuxes!

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Can you find me? (I’m on the right in the hat).
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Crazy hat hair!

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EJ and I! She finished 16 minutes ahead of me!

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With Chely!!

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Here comes Sarah! She ran the full marathon!

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Go Sarah, Go!

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Showing off my finisher’s shirt and my tiffany prize. 🙂

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The finisher’s area was so crowded. But it was still fun to collect all the goodies and walk around. Safeway was giving away Tennis Balls to use to massage your muscles after the race! What a great idea!

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One of my favorite parts of the expo is the “Pose like a Girl” station. These pics came out so cute!
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We got these cool reusable bags at the finish line too. It was perfect to put all our stuff in. I loved it! Then we waited in the crazy long bus line to go back to our car.

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The finisher’s’ shirt. It’s a teal dri-fit. I love it! Something different.

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The Tiffany finisher’s necklace. It’s cute this year. I think the biggest one  of all of them.So adorable.

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The back!

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My Tiffany Necklace collection!

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All the goodies I came home with.The Diet of a runner. HAHAHA.

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It was a race that started out good, got kind of bad, and then redeemed itself in the end. I didn’t end up getting my PR, but I came within 2 minutes of it. And considering the circumstances of not having a watch, having shin splints, not doing my normal intervals and letting my emotions get in the way… I think 2 minutes is really not a big deal. It was a fantastic race, and I am so glad I was able to run it this year with so many great friends!

 

 
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