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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Continue reading “April 2019 Road Races”

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2014 School Ghoul Los Alamitos 5K Race Recap

In honor of Father’s day I thought I’d do a race recap for the one race that I ran with my father.  This was a small local race in my hometown and since my sisters’s kids attend the school district they knew about the race.  2014 was the year my father turned 70 and so in honor of his birthday our family decided to participate.  Both my sisters and their spouses elected to do the 5K as a walk and my dad and I decided we’d try running the 5K together.  I hadn’t done a 5K in awhile but was looking to run with my dad and not for a specific time.  The fact that he was running (not walking) a 5K at 70 tells you something about him.

My father has always been an active man.  As a kid, he and I would play tennis quite often.  He also used to go play tennis with his friends in the early morning hours on the weekends.  During high school and beyond, he became very interested in hiking and so I was often his hiking partner and we spent countless hours on the various mountains around the LA area.  One of the highlights of my time with him involved hiking Mt. Whitney, the tallest mountain in the continental United States.  Luckily this is in our home state and only a few hours drive away.  A few years after that, I was happy that he was able to travel to Nepal with his friends and do some hiking by Mt. Everest.  I believe they even hiked up to Base Camp (or near it), which is amazing.  I drank the Kool-Aid and became very interested in Everest after reading Into Thin Air and watching other documentaries about the region.

After he retired, he only seemed to be more and more active.  He would swim and run regularly and also do a lot of yard work.  He’s stayed very active through his older years and I am amazed and proud of what he’s accomplished.

This race runs through the small enclave of Rossmoor, an unincorporated area of OC situated in Los Alamitos.  I am very familiar with this area.  Packet pickup was simple in a little community center in one of the parks in the neighborhood.  Since this was a Halloween race, the race t-shirts were a bright halloween orange.

Race morning we walked over from my folk’s house to the starting area (the same park as packet pickup).  There were a number of people out.  The 10K race started about 45 minutes before the 5K so by the time we arrived there were people making their way to the 10K finish.  Eventually it was time for the 5K to start and we lined up and were off.  My dad, who didn’t train for this, and I took off on a leisurely jogging pace (what I’d consider just a little slower than my usual pace).  We ran through the residential neighborhood lined with houses and spectators towards the largest park (aptly named Rossmoor Park) and bisected the park (running right through the middle of it).  At this point we turned around and started to make our way back to the start/smaller park.  This is when I really had to pee but decided since this was such a short race I could hold it.  Around this time my dad also said he needed to take a walk break so we grabbed some water and walked for a few minutes.  He said I could go on ahead as he knew I could keep running if I really wanted to.  However since this race was in honor of his 70th birthday I said I’d stay with him.

He then said he was ready to go and off we went again.  On the way back we passed my sisters who were walking the race with their family (they each had strollers and their little ones in them).  We arrived back at the park and crossed the finish line in 36:11.  It was the slowest 5K I’ve run but the most memorable because of my running partner.  Even though it was a tiny race, they had finisher medals for everyone, which I thought was neat.  After my sisters made it back they started the kids’s races and my nieces participated in that.  It was fun to watch the kids run.  They just do it by instinct and aren’t trying to follow all the “rules of running” that us adults try to do while we’re going off on our run (thinking about gait, form, pace, etc).

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Anyway that’s my father’s day story!

-StewsCat