Saturday, September 7, 2013

Aloha Run 5K

This morning I ran in the Aloha Run 5K down at Mission Bay Park. I had signed up a few weeks back, mostly because the medals looked super cute (the hula girl's skirt even spins on the medal) and because it was pretty cheap (I think only like $30). Oh yeah, and because I like 'themed' races - when else do you get to wear a grass skirt?! [Ryan was originally going to run it with me, but was worried he wasn't sure how he would feel about our races from last week so decided to sit this one out.]

Trying to do the hula before the race... 

$2 Kid's Grass Skirt from Party City?! SURE, WHY NOT!

I was shooting to be under 27 minutes for my time. SPOILER ALERT - I did NOT hit that time goal.

I started out a bit too quick (probably around 7:30 minute pace for the first half mile) and then my right shin started giving me troubles. I don't know what is wrong with it. It only tightens up if I am trying to run faster (I would say around 9 minute mile pace or slower it doesn't hurt at all, but if I try to do speed work or pick it up, especially within the first 3 miles or so, it just throbs) and is only my right shin. I think I must change my form when I am going faster and something about it is not nice to that shin...

I really like this picture that Ryan was able to capture

A few other things were working against me hitting my goal this morning. First, it is still super warm and humid out (when we got in the car after the race, around 8:15am, it was already in the 80s and still about 75% humidity) - YUCK! Next, the course was... um... sub-par. It was an out and back course, which is difficult when it is only a sidewalk. That means the already small sidewalk (especially with about 500 people running in the first wave) is then cut in half for people heading out and then coming back. Also, there was a large portion that we were switching from the sidewalk to the grass, which was still wet from the dew and pretty slick, so you really needed to watch your footing. Another observation about the course was that it wasn't closed. It was through a public park, so anyone was able to be on the sidewalks (walkers, strollers, bikes, etc). This was a much larger problem than I expected. I guess the parking was pretty bad down there for the later waves (I was in the 7:30am one, but there was an 8:00am wave and an 8:30am wave), so folks were parking a ways away and walking back over to the start. But the issue was that they were walking on the sidewalk, which turned out to be the course... The last compliant [hopefully it is seen as constructive criticism for future years and races, NOT just that I am a big whiner] that I had was the 'corrals'. It seemed like a lot of folks hadn't run in a race before and were very unfamiliar with the idea of corral starting. They only had up a little rope to separate the starting area. Well, first, people were going up to the startling line because they were excited, NOT because they were fast and should have been up there. And then, once they let the first corral go, people thought that they were getting left behind so they started jumping the rope so that they could start. This caused a lot of bottle necks and having to weave and dodge a lot of folks. I think this could have been both explained better prior to the race, as well as at the starting line.

Heading in to the finish line (you can see the start line up on the hill, where the next waves were getting ready to go)

I still ended up finishing in about 28:30, which meant I was keeping 9:10 or so minute miles. I know, I know, it was decent, especially for having run a 10K and half marathon less than a week ago, but I still get frustrated when I don't hit a goal. [And I did come in 21st out of 103 in my age group, and 245 out of 1263 overall - so I guess it wasn't too shabby... ]

Not what I was hoping for...

My grass skirt wasn't too full I guess...

The hula girl's skirt spins!

But hey, I have a virtual 5K with JostRunning next week, so I am hoping I can speed it up in comparison to today's race time. Here's to the next run...

I'm so mad I forgot to get a picture with these guys... At least one of the Instagrammers I follow did [Source: TeamRMAO333 Instagram]

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