April 2019 Road Races

Thist post got put on the backburner as we went on our trip and then I kind of forgot about it.  However I wanted to make sure I documented it.

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Prior to April, I hadn’t done a race in over a year.  So this year I decided to try again at the Buzz Oates RunSac Race Series.  I had signed up for it last year (the mileage program) but never got past the one race.  It’s been a few years since I did shorter races (5K) and so I decided to do a 5K and then my coworker wanted to do a 10K so I signed up for one as well.  They all happened to be within a few weeks of each other so I decided to lump them all into one post.

First up was the Credit Union SacTown Run on April 7.  They have both a 10 mile and 5K option.  I had not been doing much distance work and wasn’t feeling up for the 10 miler so I did the 5K.  Starting at the beginning of the year my running has been more consistent.  I’ve been doing more treadmill running but this does allow me to do incline and speed work.  I wanted to see how my speed was given that I’m getting older.  My last 5K was in 2017 where I ran ~8.5 min/mi pace.  The race started just west of the Capitol and there was plenty of street parking within a few short blocks of the start/finish area.  They had plenty of portapotties and also various tents with vendors (other regional races, local businesses).  My one gripe was that the people who had set the portapotties put them against the curb and there was quite a bit of road camber (the curve on each side of the street to allow for water to run away from the street) and so the portapotties weren’t level and would rock when you got in and tried to sit down.  I knew it wasn’t me because every single person who went in or out of them commented about it and would tell the next person: “good luck” and then laugh.  lol.  Small gripe I know.

Otherwise the rest of the race was straight forward.  The course consisted of running through the streets near the Capitol and then crossing the famous Tower Bridge into West Sacramento by Raley Field (home of the minor league baseball team Sacramento River Cats) and then back across to the finish.

I went out comfortably hard for the first 2 miles and then still feeling pretty good I pushed myself hard the last mile to see if I still had some speed.  I crossed the finish line in 26:18.  This was actually 34 seconds faster than my last 5K in 2017 – not bad!  The other great thing about 5Ks is that the recovery period is minimal.

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2018 Year-end running summary

In the end I ran the 2nd lowest total yearly mileage since I started regularly running in 2010.  I can chalk up 2010 to a low mileage due to moving from the midwest to SD and also for a very crazy work year.  This year’s (2018) low mileage total can be chalked up to a lack of motivation and lack of races.  I only ran one organized race this year, which was a half marathon early in the year (link here).

2018 Total miles: 542

Total runs: 142 (Avg 2.8 runs/week)

My total number of runs was only a little less than last year but the main difference was the distances per run especially the latter half of the year.  I am proud to have managed to do regular runs (albeit on a treadmill) during our cruise in 2018. Continue reading “2018 Year-end running summary”

2018 Shamrock’n Half Marathon Race Recap

2018 Shamrock’n Half Marathon Race Recap

Last weekend I ran the Shamrock’n half marathon here in town.  I had previously done this race 5 years ago and actually PRed it with my only sub-2.  I hadn’t even done much speed work and somehow just mentally pushed myself to a sub-2.   This year I had no time goal and just wanted to run a decent race.

Race overview:  Easy packet pick-up, good amount of porta-potties at race start, flat and fast course, good weather, nice finish line amenities.

The night before the race I had my usual pizza pre-race meal.  Initially we were going to eat at Federalist Public House, but it was packed and so we ended up just getting the pizzas to go.  Race morning came early as per my usual.  I hadn’t realized that this race fell on daylight savings time until the week before the race.  So with the “spring forward,” I was getting one less hour of sleep than usual.  I didn’t sleep quite as well because of anxiety of the time change but probably managed a decent 5.5-6 hours probably, which is a lot better than when I first started doing races.

In the last 5 years, technology has really taken off and this year for parking you had the option of reserving a spot in one of the local parking garages/lots before race day.  On the web site they didn’t list the parking structure I previously parked in that wasn’t too far from the race start/finish.  I made the decision to park in Old Sacramento, which was about a 3/4 mile walk to the race start.  I chose that lot because it meant not having to take the freeway and also I was hoping to avoid traffic and it was a success.  The trek from the parking lot to Raley Field and the race start took me across the Tower Bridge.

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Tower Bridge
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Pyramid building & Sacramento River
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River Walk

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Birthday run

I woke up early on a Sunday morning to get a run in before it became too warm.  Somewhere along the way I went from sleeping in really late (especially in college) to waking up early without any alarm.  Nowadays I wake up automatically around 5:30 am on workdays and between 6 and 7 am on weekends.  For my birthday I knew that I wanted to get an outside run and for that I had to get up early.  I have been mostly logging treadmill miles because of the heat wave that has been plaguing Sacramento.

Once outside I came across a momma turkey and two poults (young baby turkeys).

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Kyoto Day 2-4 (Japan 2017)

Kyoto Day 2-4 (Japan 2017)

We awoke on our first full day in Kyoto with some big plans.  There were quite a few locations we wanted to tick off our boxes in Kyoto and we only had so many days to see them.  We decided to head over to the Imperial Palace as it was supposed to be prime sakura (cherry blossom) viewing.  There is a web site that lists the various locales within Kyoto and the status of the cherry blossoms in that location – ranging from peak viewing to not blossomed.  The Imperial Palace was a short subway ride and walk from our AirBnB.

The Imperial Palace actually sits in the middle of a very large park.  Upon first entering the park, you could see that others had the same idea of checking out the cherry blossoms.  With it still being mid-morning, the lighting was actually quite good for picture-taking and so we did like the other tourists and posted in and around the trees.  We didn’t actually go to the front of the Palace and elected to check out the Shirakumo Shrine, which is located towards the south-eastern portion of the park.

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