Days later, I’m still riding the high from Sunday. Was it even real? Did it really happen? Sure, that blood blister you didn’t ask about on my right pinkie toe says yes, that was real, but even with over 40 races under my belt, this is the first time that I have ever walked away from a race and wanted to pinch myself. It’s Thursday now, and it’s still surreal as ever.
It has been a long time coming, but it started with some great coaching, some confidence boosting and my “party dress.”
There’s something to be said about having a uniform. A competitive soccer player growing up, uniforms were something special, something with a sense of pride and a sense of something bigger than oneself. Practice uniforms were only for practice. White uniforms were for home games. Wearing our colors were so we could represent on the road. As a member of the Oiselle Volée team, I see my singlets the same way: they are uniforms, and they only come out on game day.
Before I even share about how this year’s San Jose 408K went down, there are some folks I need to thank.
Thank you Represent Running for both another awesome San Jose 408K, and for giving me the opportunity to toe the line as part of Team Run the Bay for the third year in a row. It is truly something that fills my run-local-love cup.
Thank you to my Ekiden coach Jenny, for keeping me on task and for giving me a workload that helped me be more prepared than I mentally thought I was.
Thank you to my husband Colin, for all the coffee, bananas, encouraging words and toddler wrangling, both on race day and every time I had a “but I need to run” or “can I foam roll in peace?” moment.
And last, but definitely not least, a huge, heartfelt thanks to my amazing pacer. My cousin Dan is a very modest guy, but I think he’s a quiet badass, and I definitely wouldn’t have had the race I did had it not been for his pacing.
All that being said, I’m sure it’s pretty clear that this year was different. From running remotely, to running pregnant, to running postpartum without high expectations, a fourth go at this race left me a little lost. Should I try to PR? Should I just see what happens? Should I sleep in and skip it? Continue reading →
Over the years I’ve grown to embrace all aspects of the running community. I’ve helped set up and break down events, made sure aid stations ran smoothly and have helped promote as well. One of my favorite ways to give back while being a part of the fun is volunteering at expos. It’s a great way to meet and interact with fellow runners while helping out.
This year I am fortunate enough to be able to return to Bay to Breakers to have a very different experience than I did last year, and my friends at Sparkle Athletic will be there too! Do you have some time to spare? Hit them up! Working the Sparkle Athletic booth is always a blast. Plus, you never know… There may be cupcakes involved.
“Sparkle Athletic is looking for YOUR help! And in return, you’ll earn $25/hr in Sparkle Bucks! Do you live in the San Francisco area or will you be racing #Bay2Breakers? We are looking for expo booth help on Friday, May 13 1:30-7:00pm and Saturday, May 14 9:00am-1:30pm and 1:30-7:00pm. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.”
Married to an Oakland native, born and raised, Oakland has become a spot in the East Bay near and dear to my heart, the first city that welcomed me home to the Bay Area when I left college in San Diego. A number of my coworkers were talking about running the half marathon, and I was still longing for another go at the marathon course as I had not run as hoped in 2015. (A pregnant second marathon was not in the books for me.) When opportunity arose to tour Oakland again by foot, I jumped at the chance and decided to go for the challenge. Challengers ran the 5K at 7:30, then had a break (depending on their speed) before running the half marathon at 9:10. For someone who is runDisney 5am trained, that was a very late half marathon start! Continue reading →
There are plenty of unusual sites to be had at the century-plus old Bay to Breakers event that are only “normal” on race day: tortillas flying like misguided frisbees, stark naked men sporting clear backpacks full of clothing, entire gaggles of spectating gents dressed as prima ballerinas, groups of ‘centipede’ runners literally bound together with bungees.
This year, I was a Bay to Breakers oddity myself: a sober, pregnant runner.
(For the record, I only saw two other mothers-to-be taking on “Baby’s First Bay to Breakers” on the course, which means yes, we were sorely outnumbered by naked men. More power to you two, whomever you ladies were!)
While I had been hoping to eek out one more race before running becomes uncomfortable, I hadn’t thought that Bay to Breakers – a race this Bay Area native has always wanted to do – would be a consideration. Early in the final countdown week, Clif Bar had sent out a tweet noting they were giving away some VIP entries for Sunday’s event. On a whim, I entered. I didn’t expect to check my email on Thursday night to find a congratulatory email and two codes for VIP entry to the race!
Enter excited whirlwind mode. Who was I going to invite to run with me? More importantly, what were we going to wear? Holy monkeys, BAY TO BREAKERS! IT WAS HAPPENING. Thankfully, my friend Erin – the same Erin whom I convinced to run the Across the Bay 5K – is a Bay Area transplant who also had Bay to Breakers on her bucket list. We signed up immediately and started making plans.