Another weekend during the time of year mean’s one of 2 things, either a long run, a race or both. On Saturday I decided to make my final long training run during The Lucky Run 13.1 in Davis, Ca. Let’s all be honest, if we could get some bling after each and every long run, we would love that. I did just that, I stayed to my plan and treated the race as a training run knowing that I need to get the miles in but still keep myself focused for the big picture race which happens next weekend at the Asics LA Marathon.
Packet Pick Up – Friday March 8
|the bib with custom “run4will”|
This race was timed and managed by A Change of Pace, a Davis based organization, which meant I made my way to the Fleet Feet Sports store in Davis once again. I had already done this in early February, where I commented about how unorganized their packet pick up was during that time. This time around, I will admit the volunteers and staff was much more organized. I found parking, made my way to the sidewalk packet pick up just outside of the Fleet Feet store and was quickly assisted. This time they did have the alphabet listed out and runners were able to walk up to their letter and pick up their numbers, unlike previously where all the runners had to wait in one straight line. After grabbing bib and verifying my race information, I was directed to the t-shirt pick up line where I was provided my cotton t-shirt. Again I will mention that A Change of Pace provides each runner with a cotton t-shirt into the registration fee, but charges extra for a technical shirt. My thought will always be the same, please just increase the fee and build the cost of the tech shirt into it. I do not like registering and being asked if I wanted to “upgrade” my shirt. Just charge everyone the same fee for the best quality shirt you can provide them.
Nonetheless, this time around the packet pick up was easy to get in and out of and was very well organized.
Race Day – Saturday March 9
One of the things about Change of Pace events is that even though they are “big” for local races they still have that small neighborhood feel to them. Driving into Davis, CA runners made their way to Davis High School where we would start and finish on W. 14th Ave.
|the start pre race time|
After parking my car on one of the neighborhood streets, I made my way to the staging area in the Davis High School parking lot where runners were gathering, picking up their gear, and enjoying the lively pre-race festivities set up by A Change of Pace. While looking around and getting myself prepared for the the run, I ran into one of my Buffalo Chips Running Club teammates, Mary. We knew that we were both going to be there but weren’t certain about running along side one another until we got to the start. One thing I did notice that at these events, is that even at 20-30 minutes before the scheduled 8:07 AM gun time, the race organizers were still getting the starting line set up. They did however have the finish line all set up since that was closer to where all the runners where hanging out pre-race.
As the race started to get closer, runners gathered for the combined start of the 13.1 distance, 7k, and 7 mile. A total of about 2,500 runners were going to start together for this event. A combined distance start always makes for an interesting start because runners start off differently while some are pacing out their start others hit a harder sprint like step since they are running a shorter distance. I didn’t get too caught up in the start because I was going at this race as a training run. Just around this time, Mary decided to run with me at the start as I mentioned I was going to target around 1:38:00 or so. She was uncertain if she had the legs in her to run that, but she decided to try to see where she was at in her training.
The first mile looped around the high school before making our way up a pathway that would lead us into the Davis neighborhood pathways. Most of the course was on a pathway or on pavement. Within the first 3 miles I even thought, if this is a course someone really wanted to attack they could really push through this race and do really well with the fast terrain that was offered. The only real challenge was a freeway overpass around mile 6. However, even that climb was very minimal. The head winds going into the overpass created more of a challenge than the climb itself.
At around mile 7 I looked down at my watch, which I wasn’t doing too often during this race, since I was being a very social runner, talking to people at the aide stations and cheering on other runners around us. When I peaked down at my watch I noticed I was looking at finishing right around the 1:38 time I had wanted. Mary was running strong as well, I then asked her what her PR was for the 13.1 distance. She mentioned it was a 1:38:12ish. At this point it wasn’t about just running a 1:38 to get my run in, I was no motivated to see one of my friends run a PR. I started to think strategy and keep pace so she wouldn’t crash. As we continued onto the pathways in Davis, we were keeping a decent pace and feeling strong through the course.
|runners hitting the finish|
At mile 10, I looked down again at my watch to realize that we are going to get a sub 1:38 and I was going to be able to see a friend PR. I really enjoy seeing people PR in their races. Mile 11 and 12 rolled through and once we got into the final mile, we started to give it a little extra kick as the high school parking lot got closer where the finish line was awaiting. With the final twist and turn of the road we made our way into the finish line with an official time of 1:37:35.59 and Mary with an official time of 1:37:35.95. Congrats on the PR!
|post race bling 🙂|
After crossing the finish line we were welcomed with some pretty nice bling! For me I finished my 20th half marathon race. Of course I have ran many more training runs over the 13.1 distance, but this is he 20th half marathon bling I would be collecting.
Did you race this weekend? How did it go? Which race did you do? Feel free to share your weekend run in the comment section below.