Sunday, June 7, 2009

IronGirl 10K Race Report

Official Results - 1:09:18

My goal was to finish in under I met that goal.

I did not PR, but I wasn't expecting to. I was just happy to finish in one piece on the polycrap and to run painlessly. Again, both goals fulfilled.

(Tonight, I am having both Left PF and Right Tendon soreness...GAH!)

The day started off with a message from Penny that she'd overslept and wasn't going to make it (I actually almost texted her back to say "just drive fast" but by the time I looked at my messages it was almost 6:00 and thought that might be dangerous, so I didn't.)

Anyway, met Betty and Mik (as usual) at Betty's, then we drove to Irene's to pick her up. We loved Irene's directions to her house...minimal street names, lots of landmarks instead ("Turn at the first light, then turn at the second light from the left-hand lane. My house is the one with the big pine-tree in front it." So you all know where Irene lives now...right?) Luckily there were no U-turns (those would come later).

We got to the Del Mar Racetrack in pretty good time, mostly because we know that both lanes off the freeway make a left turn, and then the traffic dude directed us to take the completely empty right hand lane, which typically does NOT turn onto the track parking lot.

Once we parked, we found Edith or rather, she found us...the neon-lime-dayglo-green know.

Then we looked for the pottys...

Betty, Irene, and Edith...waiting in the RR line...clearly NOT HAPPY. I LOVE that Irene wore green! I'll rant about the restroom situation for a bit. This race started at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, which also is the venue for the San Diego County Fair (locals still call it the Del Mar Fair...but no matter). The Fairgrounds, which also includes the Del Mar Race Track has a TON of restrooms...far more than the two or three on the first level that were open.

Why not just open up a few more restrooms for pete's sake?

Anyway, clever Mik located the porta pottys, which were conveniently located near the start. I guess the good things about having two actual restrooms with REAL flushing toilets available in a race run predominantly by women are: 1)about 1000 women are standing in line to use the "real" toilets and NOBODY is using the porta pottys and 2) because it's primarily a woman's race, there are only a few dudes around, and again NOBODY is using the porta pottys, so they're relatively clean (or as clean as a porta potty can be). AND there was a sink. With soap. And water.

I love women's races.

So clearly, the porta potty line was the way to go (double-entrendre intended)...

The porta potty line is also where I ran into Yas (duh...again, no picture). She was doing the 5K with her mom! I'm glad I saw her. I was starting to wonder what happened to her as she's been absent from the blogosphere for a bit. We hugged and wished each other well.

All the while, I was furiously texting and calling Elsie to find out where the heck she was. The RB (real boyfriend) had dropped her off (or was with her for all we know) and while I managed to get her on the phone once we were STILL unable to meet up. I did see her on the course however, so I know she was there.

We are gonna have to have a chat about standing up the girlfriends for the RB... Methinks she was avoiding us....hmmmmmm

Relatively sparse cloud cover at the start of the race... I took this picture accidentally.

This is the picture I was trying to take when I took a picture of the sky. Elsie is up there somewhere

Yes...we glow in the dark. I took another picture that included Kat, but trust me don't want me to post it. I must have moved the camera and you all look reeeaaaallllyyyy wiiiiiiiiiide.

Finally, after the blah, blah, blah, announcements, the national anthem, and an unintelligible starter's gun shot, we were off.

Some things I loved about this race...
  1. All the all women's race we did because we didn't get into the Nike Women's 1/2 (yes, I'm still bitter).
  2. Cute dudes at the water stations (well...some were cute).
  3. With the exception of one slight hill around Mile 2/4, we ran a pretty flat course. If I were gonna PR, this would be the course to do it on.
  4. Men cheering their wives/girlfriends on...and the stress that creates for them. At about Mile 4, I saw a woman about 50 yards ahead of me stop to kiss some people who I presume were her kids and her hubby and then she waved and ran on. As I passed by him, he gave this enormous sigh and look of incredible relief...I imagined that he was running late (because he was just next to the parking lot) and was STRESSING because he'd almost missed her. I don't know if that's true or not, but it is the story I imagined as I was running past.
  5. Seeing Edith, Mik, Kat, Betty, and Elsie between miles 2 and 3, and then between miles 4 and 5... I was relieved to see Elsie. She was in her zone the second time and I don't think she saw me.
  6. Running through the fairgrounds and seeing all the vendor booths and cheesy rides being set up (before the "fair smell" sets it).
  7. Wet duck sponges at Mile 3 - Didn't take one because I thought...WTF am I gonna do with that sponge after I use it? I did see people with the duck-sponges down their shirts, shorts, etc. and thought "that can't be comfortable..."
  8. In all honesty, running the last 1/2 mile on the polycrap probably saved me. It was harder-packed than last year and a nice soft landing place for my starting-to-cramp-up tendons.
  9. The MOMENT I got on the polycrap, the fog rolled in and it cooled off considerably.
  10. Collecting duck sponges for Mik's kindergarten class (and the looks on people's faces as Betty snagged about 20 sponges off the top of a trash can...don't worry, Mik washes them before she gives 'em to the little ones).
  11. The swag - nice hardware and the stuffed AFLAC duck that quacks AAAAAAAAAAFLAAAAACK is adorable.
  12. Feeling really good throughout the race, especially since I woke up this morning, I had considered not running...both Achilles were pretty tight, and both feet pretty sore. Fortunately, as I walked around, and stretched LOTS, everything seemed to loosen up. By race time, I felt pretty good. I ran pretty slowly, but I was consistent. Here are the splits.
  • Mile 1 - 11:01
  • Mile 2 - 11:15
  • Mile 3 - 11:07
  • Mile 4 - 11:06*
  • Mile 5 - 11:14
  • Mile 6 - 11:15
  • Mile 6.2 - 11:22
Both Betty and I have run this race since it's inaugural three years ago when we used it as a training run for our first AFC 1/2 marathon (before I had any idea what the hell I was doing as a runner). The first (and IMHO, the BEST race) was the first year in Solana Beach. The course was the best, up and down the Pacific Coast Highway, awesome views. The breakfast that year was (from what I heard and how it looked) incredible.

I understood why they moved to the fairgrounds. There's plenty of parking and it seems like it would be a venue that could accommodate the 2400 or so who ran both the 5K and the 10K this morning, but somehow, two years in a row, it doesn't seem like it's quite works out. The breakfast this year was a muffin and a yogurt in a bag (I didn't even take one). Whatever.

Betty and I will continue to run it, because in 7 years, we're thinking there'll be some recognition ceremony for all of those who have run it for all 10 years...and maybe some better swag! less favorite things about the race include...

Here's the route...the little 1/2 loop at the end? Yeah, that's the polycrap horse racing track...duh... Why do so many of my running routes look like Elvis? (a young Elvis perhaps...facing down...). We ran up Elvis's pompadour, down the back of his head, and neck twice...
  1. The course...Del Mar is beautiful. Both North and South of the city are beautiful beaches and vistas of the ocean, so then WHY TF are we running around the parking lot?
  2. The 10Kers ran part of the 5K route (the start to about mile 3.5) two times and started first. What this meant is that the fast 5K runners, who started about 5 minutes after us, had to weave their way around us. I sorta felt bad for them, and I rarely feel bad for 6 minute milers passing me.
  3. Payback's a bitch...THEN we 10K runners had to weave our way around the 5K walkers by the time we got to about Mile 5 and, in my case when I got to the polycrap.
  4. Once on the track, those who were walking really needed to stay off the rail (the inside lane). Weaving in and out of them on the track? HAAAAAAAAAATED! Seriously. You're WALKING!!!! Take the outside lane.
  5. The sun came out STRONG about miles 3-5. I remember thinking that I was glad Penny slept in because she would have HATED it.
  6. The polycrap...I'm not gonna lie. I hated running on it. Although I will repeat that it was harder packed than last year. It's still a lousy way to end a race.
  7. The entire setup of the vendor booths at the end of the race was ridiculous. I mean really, who puts a high impact vendor stand (e.g. the "free" breakfast) in a high traffic area (where everyone is exiting from the track). In my life before teaching, I did event planning...this is a cardinal rule. You always put the food and the bar to the side because people will ALWAYS walk there. Putting those things in a high traffic areas only causes gridlock and FRUSTRATION!!!
After the race, we looked for Elsie...oh yeah? Remember her? She'd left with the RB...GAH!

After the race, we went to a new spot ( to us, Irene goes there regularly) called The High Dive...EXCELLENT!

The coffee mugs were like leftovers from everyone's kitchen. Here Irene does Vanna with one that reads "Live Begins After 40" and all the joy that begins after 40 (wrinkles, sagging, shrinkage...)

Mimosas with Cranberry Juice. Aren't they purdy? $10 for a bottle of their finest. We are soooooooo going back to this place.

Kat with her mug of whipped cream and a splash of coffee


Drove home. Had to make two U-turns. Got home. Took Nap.
* I got this number by calculating, not by what the Garmin said. You'll notice that the numbers add up to EXACTLY 6.2 miles...and really with all that weaving, who runs 6.2 miles? Not me. I accidentally stopped my Garmin at about 3.79 miles for what I think is about a mile...I just know that I was as 42:03 for a REALLY LONG TIME, before I thought...WTF is wrong with this thing...Oh, maybe I should START THE EF-ER. Anyway, it's close. I subtracted the time on the Garmin from the Official finishing time, and figure this is what I ran with the thing stopped (and they say English teachers can't do the math...BBJ, Edith, and Wilma...that's for you math kids!)


  1. I'm going to cry that I missed a morning with the girls! And i'm kinda glad you didn't call back at 6am-I would have been speeding down the 405 and 5....YIKES! I would have had to taken the fast car-and penny speeding...I drive FAST in that car! But hearing that the sun poked it's hideous head out for the race! maybe I'm kinda glad I donated money to the Aflac Iron Girl race!!! I would have liked the duck though! Oh well! maybe next time-and maybe next time I'll drag my sorry ass down to San Diego county the night before since a 4am wake up is SO HARD for me to muster-especially on my pseudo holiday!

    Wow....I guess i'm most upset about missing the mimosas! damn you woman! You are always going for yummy drinkies after running! Why don't you live up here!!!

    Missed you all! I will try, as long as I don't work into the wee hours of a saturday, to come down on a saturday morning and run a long run with you all!!! I need girl time and group run time!!

  2. Great report. Good time on the running too. You made your goal. Yay!

    P.S. Kat is MY kind of gal. ;)

  3. Great job, lady!

    I finally decided to stop lurking and say hey because I ran the Iron Girl this morning too. It was my first 10K and it wasn't my best run (by far). I too hated running on the track; I know it's where I lost time.

    Anywho, I hope I see you at a race one day - this blog has been a great inspiration!

  4. Fun! I've never heard of this race. Maybe next year...

    I'm going to hook up with you ladies one of these days to do a race (got to find myself a lime-green neon shirt first, though).

    I'm impressed that Irene did this a week after the marathon! She doesn't even LOOK 40 in person so she ought to get a different mug next time.

    I'm glad you made it out there for another year of this race. Congrats that you came in under your goal time too!

    Take care of those feets! :)

  5. Great job! Sounds like you all had an awesome time this morning and boy do those mimosas look yummy. Have you heard of Team in Training? If you join their program they will get you a spot in this years Nike marathon. At least that's what I heard this Saturday at an informational meeting they had. Might be worth looking into.

  6. I still can't believe I found my neon green shirt last night... I didn't want to mess with the herd's chi...

    You forgot to mention that Betty made me cry... Laughing over Catholic school and "Kumbaya."

    I'll post my race report tomorrow. I had a busy day after I came home.

    Kat needs a nic-name. It's gotta be something like Midge or Trixie, you know, something very 1950's...

  7. Good job on your time - that's awesome!

    You look after those feet Alice - it's the PITS having to live vicariously through blog land :)

  8. Nice job! You guys always look like you have a great time.

  9. You guys sure know how to do the post race 'thing' that's fo sho! I wish I lived closer because that's how I like to roll.

    Great job on the run, I know you've been missing it. Buttt, it's got to be great weather out 'der to be on a bike.

  10. Love the green shirts!
    Great report and good running!

  11. you ladies know how to enjoy those races! Congrats on meeting your two goals! YAY!!!

  12. Congrats on meeting all your goals!

  13. Yay! Great race report. Sounds like a good time, but the race director still has room to improve...

    I saw that Yas had walked this race on FB, I was wondering if you were there, too. :)

  14. Great race report! It's so cool that you guys have your social circle to run with!

    Next time you see Yas tell her to not be such a stranger! It's been weeks since she's updated her blog.

    Best of luck with your foot. I hope now you can get some rest and get it squared away!

  15. I wish they had this race in ATL. They only have the tri here.

    Good job on meeting your goals.
    Love the pics of the mimosas!

  16. it's a complete party everytime you enter a race. that's the way to do it!
    your sponge comment reminded me of a post i read by one of the bloggers so i looked it up here:

  17. I agree Cindi - I love this race but for three years straight I've felt it has been the most disorganized event. Not the running part - but the start and finish lines are not well planned.

    I did love having Irene along - although I'm not sure what she really might think of us now! Kumbaya Irene!

  18. Nice report! I really need to add some more photos and pics to my stuff. lol

    Looks like a fun time, though

  19. Great report. It sounds like you had fun and that is the most important! Post race mimosas is an awesome idea!

  20. Finally! I checked throughout the day yesterday for your always entertaining report. I was so bummed I missed it, though it sounds like maybe the recession's hit this race too. A muffin and yogurt after last year's fruit and breakfast burritos?!

  21. Awesomely entertaining race report! I've lived here for almost 10 years and I've never been to the Del Mar Fair once. So what's the "fair smell"?

  22. You and the heffer's always have WAY too much fun. Great job on your race, you are a speedy speedster!

  23. Your comment made me laugh. Yes, that is exactly what the last week and a half is of school. The little bastards, umm...I mean cherubs, are done tomorrow then graduation and one teacher work day and I am finally f-ing done! (Sorry, to respond to your comment in a comment. It is always irritating to everyone that has no idea who I am or what you said... I digress)

    Awesome race! I sure hope we get to run together some day! I have a feeling we would get along FAMOUSLY!