Southern California Half Marathon 2018

In Running, Race, Travel

Chip Time: 1:25:24 (6:31 min/mile)
Overall: 25/707. Men 24/358. M25-29: 2/17.

# The Firsts!

* First Saturday half-marathon, I think.
* First race run the day right after a flight.
* First race in Orange County (my home county) since high school.
* First $60+ race without gear check (grrr!!!)
* First half-marathon course with 8 out-and-backs (meh…)

# The Two-Minute Summary…

* Improved my half-marathon PR by 29 seconds against the 1:25:53 I ran at Monterey Bay last November.
* Finished second in my age group! Surprisingly 25-29 wasn’t competitive. Rather, the race skewed toward high schoolers (16-19) and their parents (40’s through 50’s).
* I was feeling unwell the night before, and morning of, the race. Creaky knees. Wonky ankle. Persistent cough. Two consecutive down weeks from running. The first half wasn’t that great (with mile splits between 6:16 to 6:43). But around miles 7-8, I started feeling alive again. Around mile 10, I started to think about pushing my pace. Second half splits ranged from 6:10 to 6:38, for a negative split en route to a PR.
* Not the most scenic or exciting course. Mostly canals and office buildings. Lots of out-and-backs; the organizers clearly didn’t want to, or could, close many streets. It was flat and fast, though, with lots of high school nostalgia; lots of kids wearing cross-country singlets from schools I recognized.

# Quotes

While I was standing in line to get my age group medal, a very tan, wrinkly man approached me.

“How was your race?”, he asked.
“2nd in my age group!”
“Oh! Congrats!”
“How about you? How’d you do?”
“Oh, I won the old man age group!”
“Wow! Well done! Congrats!”
“Yeah! I also won 2nd overall.”

# Up Next:

The Kyoto Marathon in one month and Kagoshima Marathon two weeks after Kyoto!

I didn’t tell many people that I was racing a half this weekend. But to those I did, I emphasized that this race was *FOR FUN*. I was already planning on visiting friends and family this weekend. And just because I could, I’d run this race (I didn’t know I liked travel races so much!)

The two marathons next month are also *FOR FUN*. I didn’t kill myself at this race. I don’t plan to kill myself at those two races either. I’ll save that for my May marathon.

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