Sunday, May 31, 2009

It's Hard to Find Your Friends in A Sea of 20,000 Marathoners

I was going to title this post "Dirty Girls" but lord only knows who would find my blog using those search terms...

Anyway, Betty, Mik and I had planned to meet at 6:30 to ride our bikes into Mission Valley to cheer all our friends who ran the San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon this morning, but Walter and DramaGirl played musical beds last night,* so I overslept, and so I didn't get to Mik's house until about 6:50.

I hate being late...really I do.

Once there, I unloaded my bike and gear, while Betty and Mik, who are so patient, waited for me to futz around with all my paraphernalia (gotta have the phone, and some cash, and my ID, and the Garmin, and the gloves, and the bike lock...and oh wait, I need to get the CAMERA FOR PETE'S SAKE!!!!)

And of course cow bell...we had to have more COW BELL!!!

Betty, at long last, got horn for her bike...Also, she rode with clipless pedals today like a champion. Didn't fall once (bitch...)

Finally, geared up (hahaha), we headed toward Mission Valley to watch the race. Our start included a descent down a pretty steep road (for locals, we went down Montezuma from SDSU to Mission Gorge)...two miles that drop from about 500ft to sea level...

See the gray "elevation" line...that's the decent. Pay no attention to the part at the end that says our speed was suddenly 45 - 50 mph...we were on the trolley then and I forgot to stop the Garmin)

This is where the Dirty Girls headline comes into play. As you'll read in lots of RnR race reports, the morning was misty, which meant that the streets were wet...and muddy...and so were we. The ride down Montezuma was, to say the least, SCARY (Me speed on wet, muddy road? I think NOT!)

I never get that dirty running, but I have to say that I liked it.

Mik and I...we were pretty clean by the time I took this picture...but you can still see all the mud on my neck and shirt...dirrrrrrrrrrttttyyyyyy. Also, on Saturday, I bought some new sunglasses for riding. They're getting kinda tinted in this picture, but they were almost clear earlier in the morning...which was sooooo cool.

The marathon route goes up the 163 freeway, then the runners head down Friars Road for miles 11-14. When we got there, it was still pretty early, so there weren't any crowds yet, but we did get to see some of the leaders (who run just freekin' fast BTW). Then we rode over to the Friar's Road out and back (for the RnR - miles 21-23 or so), just to see how we were going to be able to get around. There were lots of road closures (of course), but getting around on the bikes was amazingly easy.

When it was getting close to 8:15 (about 2 hours after the gun time), we headed back to the Mile 14 marker, just where the runners were turning onto Napa.

I saw a runner with a monkey on his back.

This is where I KNOW NOW that I should have seen Lisa and Irene and my friend Kim (who owes me because we were at a neighborhood birthday party on Saturday night, and I shamed her husband into dropping her off in the morning rather than letting her drive herself down to the start...which is just WRONG for pete's sake...).

BTW...on Friars Road, I learned that it's really difficult to find your friends in a sea of runners...

First we saw Santiago (who did a 2:04 1/2 marathon split), but I was probably taking a picture of the monkey-guy, so I missed taking his photo, and I know he's heartbroken... Santiago finished in 4:08:26.**

Then we saw Kat (who finished in 4:53:17)

BBJ...who took his hat off to us (and finished in 5:02:57)

Kat is in this photo...can you spot her? Are any of you in this shot?

This is why I had a difficult time finding you all...that and it makes me dizzy to watch runners run...all that movement...Again? Anyone in this shot?

We hung around on the corner (nice...huh?) for a few more minutes, then Mik decided to ride home, and Betty and I rode back up Friars, spotted LOTS of SDTC peeps along the way, including Irene's husband Michael. Then we headed back to around toward Mission Bay again, looked for more peeps. We ended up riding around East Mission Bay with the runners (which was cool)...all the while Betty and I chatted about what we remembered about our long run a year ago.

By this time, it was about 10am and we were hungry, so we stopped and had some breakfast. Then we rode back over to Grand Avenue (near mile 18 which is where I saw Doreen from the SDTC...and probably should have seen Irene...GAH!). We got separated and almost lost each other on the Friars Road out and back (It was the third time we'd ridden through there). I probably should have been able to spot Sara and another non-blogging friend Sandy (who I didn't even know was running the marathon until she told me about it at Turbo's Little League game the day before), but I didn't see them either ((sadness)).

By that time, we'd ridden almost 30 miles, so we headed back to east county. BTW...there was lots more traffic at 11:30 than there was at 7am...

We also decided to NOT ride back up Montezuma (we'd gone about 30 miles at that point), so we went as far as it was flat(ish)...(and for those who are not from San Diego, flat is a relative term here...nothing is really flat). Then we took the trolley two stops to SDSU (which getting the bikes on the Trolley was another adventure, mostly because it involved lifting my bike up narrow steps, and I'm a klutz, and I have no upper body strength).

Betty and I at the trolley...a long-ass ride (which is what my ass was saying).

So...what a ride! No falls. No flats. I wish I'd seen more of you running peeps, but I was cheering you on whether I saw you or not. Congrats to all of you! I can't wait to read your race reports!

* This is what happens in my house when one of the kids can't sleep...Both DramaGirl and Turbo know that I am a sleeper, and have learned that if they try to wake me, I am entirely unsympathetic and just tell them to go back to they wake Walter, who is a light sleeper, and who gets up to deal with them...sweeeeeeeeet how I've worked that out, isn't it?

** I'm only posting times for my non-blogging friends...I won't steal any of my blogging friends thunder...although I completely stalked all of you and that's how I KNOW that I should have seen you, but somehow missed you in the sea of humanity.


  1. Sounds like you had a great day! Your blog always cracks me up. It's funny that you didn't call it "dirty girls"... I stupidly called one of my blogs "maximum boobage", talking about sports bras... you would be stunned to see the amount of hits that page gets :)

  2. OH that sounds like my way to marathon...on a bike. Funny you said dirty girls today - I refer to a friend as Dirty Girl in my post. I hope nobody creepy finds me.

  3. You think the phrase "dirty girls" would get lots of crazy searches?? You should see how many I get when I title mine with the word "snatch" anywhere in the title!!!
    Nice ride!

  4. Sounds like a fun way to go and cheer your friends!

  5. It's really great to know you were out there! :)

    One of my friends was also out there just to cheer me on, and he couldn't find me for a long time, and he was all over the course! He did finally see me, snapped a photo, but I didn't see him. Next time I'll have to wear flashing red lights on my head, or something!

  6. OK why did I think that the monkey was "doing" him instead of "monkey on his back" What the heck is wrong with me?!?

  7. Glad that you got some photos of your friends!

  8. Sounds like you had a lot of fun!

  9. wonder what the story was behind the monkey on his back... lol. well done on the ride! and congrats to Betty who didn't fall once, using the clipless pedals... (lmao that you called her a bitch for it) :D

  10. You look like you're getting this bike thing down pretty well. Maybe there's hope for me yet.

    Great recap. (No surprise.)

  11. I was going to title this post "Dirty Girls" but lord only knows who would find my blog using those search terms ...

    I've already found you, sister, so how much worse could it get?

    Hahahahaha! I think you're safe.

    Way to cheer yer peepz on, you drrrty grrrls, you.

  12. That was nice of you to go support your peeps. And you got exercise in too. Yay! ;)

  13. What a brilliant idea to bike around the route to see your friends in the race! Glad you made it without falling!

  14. Nice pics! And biking to spectate - sounds FUN :)