Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Race Report: San Jose Rock 'n' Roll 1/2 Marathon

So two Sundays ago, I ran the San Jose Rock 'n' Roll 1/2 Marathon. It was my first time running any of the Rock 'n' Roll events and it was a lot of fun. Here is my review in bullet form:
  • Course: It was a loop throughout San Jose which I like since that means no shuttles were involved. The portion through downtown San Jose was fun, but for the most part, the course is not too scenic. Also, it was nice and flat with a few exceptions for underpasses and what not - no major hills, though.
  • Entertainment: Bands at every mile of course! Wide variety of music, too, so that was fun.
  • Weather: The forecast said high 50's which made me very excited. I neglected to note that it also said "Sunny" which ended up draining a lot of energy from me.
  • Amenities: Water and Cytomax at every aid station. They also gave Power Shots (I think?) at one of the stops. After the finish, they had cold water towels which I loved!!!
  • Expo: Pretty decent for a half marathon. And I was amazed by the wide selection of race gear they had - more than Nike! They had all sorts of different styles and a lot of them were pretty cute, too. I guess since it's part of the RnR "chain", it's easy for them to have a wide selection.
  • Size: I think there were almost 10,000 runners total? Including those crazy elite runners that run at 5:xx paces!
  • Good for out-of-towners?: Definitely! The expo and the race start/finish are both conveniently located within walking distance of the downtown SJ hotels. There is stuff to do in that area but you're also only an hour from SF and a couple of hours from Monterey.
  • Post-race entertainment: Very fun! Runners get a free beer and there is live entertainment at the finish. However, I left right before the headliner (Credence Clearwater Revisited).
  • Post-race food: Tons! More than my little arms could hold. I should have stolen an empty box like other runners. Sadly, no cookies, though.
  • Chip timing: Yep, they used the D-tag system.
  • Medal: Very cute and colorful (see below)
  • Race shirt: Bleh. Short sleeve, white cotton T.


I headed to the expo on Saturday afternoon. We had to sign a form that was mailed to us ahead of time which I didn't open until I went to pick up my bib. I was in for a big shocker - do you know what was listed as my predicted finish time???


Did I really enter that? What the heck was I thinking? Well, it turns out that way back in February, when I first registered for this race, I had it in my mind that I could shoot for a new half marathon PR (by 8+ minutes, no less!). Oops. I kind of forgot about that. I guess I was too busy squeezing in two half marathons and a duathlon in the month leading up to it. Oh well, maybe next year!

Anyway, while there, I finally got to meet Julianne! Luckily, she had a camera with her since I kind of forgot to bring the battery that comes with mine (doh).

Don't we look all nice and clean? :)

Race Day

I loved having the race so close to my home and with a start time of 8AM. That means I got to wake up at 6AM instead of 5AM, what a luxury!

I got to the race about an hour ahead of time. Wow - they had tons of port-o-potty's! I don't think any line had more than three people. I did a bit of a warm up jog and then found my corral. Off we went!

The weather felt nice and cool. I was hoping it would stay cold for most of the race, however, I'd say within the first mile we came into a stretch where the sun was out and I knew that it would not be a cold one.

I was pretty consistent with my splits for the first 5 miles or so but eventually, I could not pick up the pace. It wasn't necessarily hot, but there was a lot of sun on the course and I think it really did a number on me. I drank water more often but I couldn't really push my pace too much. Especially in the last mile where I really wanted to try to pick it up but I noticed my heart rate was getting to 185 (extremely high for me!) so I just kept running at what felt comfortable.

I crossed the finish line with a chip time of 2:17:08, about the same time as the Disneyland Half.

After we finished, we all got a water bottle and a nice cold water towel. I was so happy to have both as I wasn't feeling so hot at the end. I had sprinted the last stretch of the race and I was still breathing hard when I finished. I think the sun was getting to me, too. There were these long lines at the finish to get your pic taken (mine is below), and while standing there under the sun, I felt really weak. I ate the rest of the luna moons that I had in my back pocket. Also, everything seemed really bright, like white-bright, if that makes sense. One person accidentally bumped into me, and I felt like I could have easily just toppled over. I ran into an old TNT friend and chatted with her a bit, but while talking, I could sense that my breathing was still off, like I had to take mini-gasps of air or something. Overall, it was just weird and I was really glad that I asked my friend and her fiance to come meet me at the finish.

Official Results

Chip Time: 2:17:08
Pace: 10:28

Overall: 5047/9563
Gender: 2079/5375
Division: 376/901

Afterward, I found my friends and they were awesome with helping to take care of me afterward. Such cuties. Also, GC tried to take pics of me crossing the finish line and they were so hilarious. I'll see if she still has them... in one, you could only see my orange hat and possibly a hand, another one was just feet (maybe mine, who knows) and another one was a guy that jumped in front of her camera. The one photo she did get of me was after I finished and it might quite possibly be the most unattractive photo I've ever seen of me. So yeah, you won't be seeing that.

Once I felt better, we got some beers and found a spot on the lawn with the blanket they had brought. It was so nice to be out there - the sun feels great when you're not running, haha!

Here is the back of the T-shirt we all received with the medal.

Cute medal!

And for The Office fans, I saw someone running with the shirt from the Fun Run for Rabies 5K! You know, this one:

I need to get one of these!

Anyway, it was a fun race and depending on the schedule, I'd probably sign up again. (Too many fun fall races!) It would be great to get some of my friends to do it, too.

Other race reports:


Julianne said...

The ice cold towels were a touch at the end, wasn't it? ;-) You did great! And so glad I got to see you at the expo!! There was free beear at the end? That's what I get for leaving early. Ugh. But you did great! Um, what's that guy in bib 6640 doing next to you???

What is your expected finish for the Nike Half this weekend?

Running Knitter said...

Congrats on another great half mary! You are totally a running machine.

Let me know if you want to maybe meet up before the half on Sunday - I'll be at the expo on Saturday. :)

Cindy said...

you are just racking up the hm medals--great job!
my random comments:
what was with the guy running behind you in the sunglasses?
your haircut is adorable!
the sun is my enemy too, good thing i live in portland.

audgepodge said...

Yeah - #6640 looks like he wants to play Whack-an-Audrey as if he's at Chuck E Cheese!

RoadBunner said...

Great report. I agree about the sunshine. I love cooler running weather (I'm talking in the 40's) but even when it's cool the direct sunshine saps me. Sounds like we run about the same pace when I'm not injured. I also listed my finishing time as 2:00:00 (my holy grail is to break two hours) but had to scrap that. I agree, the cotton T was totally hideous.

Marcy said...

ROFLMAO I was going to say the SAME thing as Cindi! WTF was up with that guy?!? HAHAHHAA

Awwwhhh sounds like a most excellent time and sweetness that you got to meet the lovely Julianne!

I always dig your dos. :-) You've got the best hair chica!

Laura said...

Congratulations! And I totally want an Office race shirt too. Think we could get it in Dri-Fit? :)

*aron* said...

i looooved the ice cold towels - the best!! great report! i love the bullets.

i have the office race gear :)

Anonymous said...

i ran this race with Aron and I met Julianne after :) I loved the ice colds towels! it was the best!!! great job :)

The Laminator said...

Nice race report Audrey. It totally looked like you had so much fun. I'm glad you were okay after you finished though. Good job!

joyRuN said...

Great race report! And wow - those ice cold towels sound heavenly, especially after running in the sun (that takes it out of me too).

BTW - Did you get an unfortunate whiff of 6640?

Jamie said...

Sounds like a good race with a lot of goodies! Way to finish strong! Congrats on another great race!!!

Viv said...

Great report! Congrats! Looked like a fun time. The medal was cute and I am LMAO at the run For Rabies.//

laura said...

haha! I have the Michael Scott T-shirt and the bracelet... came with the Office Season 4 DVD special edition thingy..

Anyways nice blog, I was searching for Big Sur Mud Run race reports and found you, and noticed you also did the SJ half and Muddy Buddy like I did.. I'm trying to convince my sister to do MB again this year :)

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