Sunday, October 26, 2008



Light the Night Against Crime 5K...
Cool thing about the race? It started at 7:00 PM. I've never done a nighttime race before. Also, all the proceeds go to Crimestoppers (AKA good citizens who snitch on bad people)...seriously, it is a good cause. I wish someone would snitch on the losers who broke into our house last February...but I digress...

Not so cool thing about the race? It certainly wasn't cool. Temperature at race time was 68ยบ and a balmy 76% humidity (by 8pm - the humidity was up to 81%...GAH!)...WTF is up with the weather around here?

Betty, Elsie, Edith, Alberta, Mic, and yours truly joined LMPD officer Stoney for the race. First we needed a warm-up..and what better way to warm up than to climb a dirt hill out of the pit where we parked in Balboa Park, rather than taking the road. Betty led the way, and like sheep, we followed. Alberta worried about snakes. I worried about twisting my ankle in a gopher hole. By the top of the hill, we were already winded and sweaty. that humidity...

Our warm-up

Once we got to the start, we found Edith and Stoney waiting for us...Edith was bummed because we all wore the required neon-green shirt, but she did look fabu-fabu in her pink running skirt. I also had leftover glow-in-the-dark necklaces left over from DramaGirl's birthday at least we looked HAWT!

hmmmm...guess the woman who took our photo decided that Stoney didn't need to be in it...

This was a pretty small field (about 1000 runners), no chip timing. Only 3.1 miles, should have been a breeze, right?

Here's the rundown:
  1. Start - We started pretty far toward the front of the race...about as close to the front as I'd ever been, but as this was a big event for walkers, and there were tons of strollers and dogs...and we wanted to be in front of all that. We all set lofty goals for ourselves. Edith wanted to finish in under 25 minutes. My goal was to finish in close to 30 minutes, but Stoney shamed me into thinking I could finish in under 30 since the end of the race is all downhill...
  2. Mile 1 - After the gun, I followed Stoney and Edith for about the first 100 yards, then tried to settle into what I thought was my 10 minute mil(ish) pace. Alberta was beside me for maybe the first 1/4 mile, then she just took off (she told me later her first mile was under 9 minutes...8:30 or something like go girl!). The good thing was that since we started pretty far forward, and since we started (for me anyway) pretty fast, I didn't have to dodge in and out of people too much. I did almost trip over one of those stupid reflector thingies in the middle of the road...I hate those things. I saw Mic sprint past me at about the half mile point. All I know is that I was running as hard as I could...and when I passed the 1 mile mark, the timer shouted out something like 10:20. Since I have almost no ability to judge how fast I am running, I wasn't surprised to hear this...but I was surprised at how hard it was to catch my breath...
  3. Mile 2 - I was thinking - OK...I should be able to settle in a little bit, but I couldn't. I'd try to slow down to catch my breath, which I was losing rapidly , but then all these people would pass me (including some incredibly small people), and I'd start running faster. Before the turnaround, I saw Edith and Stoney and waved at them. Then at the turnaround, I was just thrilled because I knew that most of the run back was downhill. Running at night is OK. Alberta, who was nowhere in sight by the turnaround, told me later that she loved running at night because she was awake and had eaten. All I knew is that I was mostly concerned that I was going to twist my ankle on something. It sure felt surreal. At two miles, the timer shouts out 20:18...which I though was an OK time...but I knew I wasn't going to break 30 minutes, cuz there's no way I can run 1.1 miles in under 9 minutes.
  4. Mile 3 - I made a really short walk-through (about 7 steps) at the water station because...can you say "SWEAT?" I was dripping...and thirsty, which I know is a bad thing, even in a pretty short I gulped down some water that tasted like it came from a hose (yuk) and headed downhill...I was finally starting to feel warmed I tried to pick up the pace again...but mostly so that I could pass up a kid who looked to be about 6 years old (shameful, isn't it?). As I came to the three mile timer, I could hear her shout out something that was less than 30 minutes (29 minutes and something seconds).
  5. End - 30:20...clock time. I was huffing and puffing more than usual (certainly more than the 1/2 marathon) and I am literally dripping from the end of my nose. Oveall, I'd call my time around 30:15. My iPod read 30:17 and I didn't stop it until I crossed the finish line and pulled it out of my back pocket any event...I didn't break 30 minutes, but did set a new 5K PR! Walter kept asking me this morning why I was so dissapointed? I ran a good race. I set a PR. What is wrong with me? I blame Stoney, who planted the seed that I should be able to break 30 mintues with no problem...GAH!'s what I learned:
  1. I really do prefer longer races where I can settle in. I never felt settled until I was almost done.
  2. A 5K is a sprint...I had to run hard the whole time. I'm not so sure I'm built for that kind of race. I always felt winded and never comfortable.
  3. If I'm going to run some shorter races this winter, I'm going to have to train differently. Anyone know how?
  4. Running in humidity stinks (oh yeah, I knew that already)...
Not all was lost...we still had people to gawk at. I wish I had gotten a picture of the two guys who dressed up as Michael Phelps and who ran in speedos wearing fake Gold Medals...priceless... We got lucky and while walking back to the car, Stoney took our picture with the crossing guard...who had just the BEST Elvi-Mullet EVAH...really!

AND Look...that's two photos where Alberta decided to show us her braces!

After the race, we went to a fabulous local bar called Nunus and had beers and burgers (I had chicken wings and Amstel Light, since I have a weigh-in with Viv today). Awesome dive-bar with red- nagahide booths...with some, shall we say, rather air-y seats? I learned about this when I sat down, and Mic and Betty literally almost blew me out of the seat by sitting at the same's hard to explain, but I literally felt the air in my hoo hoo.

I just love that the palm trees are fenced in...Is this just in case someone exiting needs an emergency tree?

Which led us to the evening's vocabulary lesson...Betty surprised us all by sharing with us that she called it a "biscuit."

A biscuit?

With gravy?

Butter that biscuit?

I won't share the rest of the jokes we came up can only imagine...cuz again...we are just so mature that way.

Lovely evening with the herd. We have two more 5Ks lined up in the next couple of weeks. Next weekend, I'm run/maybe walking some of the Susan B. Komen Race for the Cure with my husband's family. Walter, DramaGirl and Turbo are also run/walking with me, so I'm pretty sure that I won't be setting any land-speed records there, but it'll be a nice morning. We are all walking as a family in support of my mother-in-law and sister-in-law who are both battling breast cancer.

Then the following week, I'll be running with the herd and Irene and Anne at the Shelter Island's a nice flat, hopefully cool morning run, where I'm hoping to break that 30 minute mark.

Hope everyone has a great week...and a really scary Halloween...I'll leave you with these two goblins...just in case...
Turbo and DramaGirl...aka "Spook" and (I'm not making this up) "Ring-lee-dah"


  1. The Light the Night Against Crime 5k sounds like a fun race and a great cause, too!! And, you finished in great time. :-)

    I prefer longer races, too! I feel like 5ks are sprints and it's too tiring. I guess we're just meant for loooonger distances!

  2. That sounds like a great race, I wonder if we have one here.

    CONGARTS on the PR!! What an awesome time. You're right though, 5Ks are sprints...people finish them in under 14 minutes!!

    Love your pics. Everyone looks like they really had a great time. Your kids look totally ready for Friday night!

    Trick or Treat

  3. Oh my gosh, that night race looks awesome! I'd love to do one of those sometime!

    Congrats on the great time!!!

  4. Congrats on the PR! That's so cool that you have a group of friends to run with, mine are all slackers =)

  5. You're right about #2: A 5K is a sprint, and that's a hard distance to sprint for!

  6. We've run in that event before -- Glad you had a good time! Way to go on the PR. :) It's been a Fall of PR's for you! I'm looking forward to the Shelter Island 5k.

  7. What a fun race! WTG on the PR. running in the humidity is the worst!

    LMAO at biscuit....I know where you are going with that one.

    Your kiddos look great!

  8. cool green tanks! gah! all that humidity, to me it would feel like swimming.

  9. A 5K PR -- in that heat?! You go, girl!!

    Yes, 5ks are a tough distance because you really do sprint the entire time. I prefer 10ks for just that reason.

  10. Nice job!! I love the idea of a night time race!

    Great photos, and WAY TO GO!!

  11. Congrats on the PR!

    And, I love the costumes.

  12. Congrats on the PR!

    The costumes are great.

    LMAO at the biscuit!

  13. I don't think I've posted here before, so 'hi'! I enjoy the humor in your posts, and also, you make me want to run the Nike Women's 1/2 in San Fran just for the firemen and the necklace!

    Anyway, I'm a new runner, and my first 5K was this past weekend and I had all the same issues. I do not run well in humidity (it was humid), it takes me at least 1.5 to 2 miles to get 'settled' - I think I will prefer the longer distance races as time goes on.

    I recently read somewhere that to run a faster 5K, you should do at least one 'fast mile' every week in training. An 'all out' race pace mile. Obviously I have not tested this, but it's worth a shot?

  14. Great job! My PR on a 5k would probably still have a slower pace than my 1/2 marathon PR. I just can't get going in that amount of time. It hurts too much. Way to push through it!

    Looks like a ton of fun. I so miss having the girls to run with. One moved to LA, the other doesn't run anymore *le sigh*