Tuesday, June 1, 2010

You Can’t Win Everytime…

This weekend was, errrr, eventful. I was supposed to run 13 miles on Saturday, 6 on Sunday, and rowed 4 yesterday. Here is how things ended up:

Saturday – Woke up around 4:30 with a bit of a stomach problem. Details would be TMI. Suffice it to say I would have been trotting from bush to bush. I decided to live and play another day.

Sunday morning – Plan was to get out for Saturday’s 13 miler. Tried burning the candle at both ends Saturday night. Took my kids to see George Clinton and Parliament Funkadelic at House of Blues (great venue to see a concert). George was his normal self and played for three and a half hours.

Didn’t get out of the place and back home until 1:30. In the morning. Getting up early on Sunday didn’t happen. Started on my last blog post while having AM coffee. Had a difficult time stringing more than three coherent words together. The day draws on.

Sunday afternoon – Got the blog post published in the early afternoon. Find out that the wife and I were home alone for the evening. Decided it was time for a night out on the town. 13 miles ain’t happening. Decided to take Penny up on her invitation to join her at the Laguna Hills Half Marathon on Monday. Drive to the Laguna Hills Mall and sign up. Get the last large shirt. Out of goody bags.

Monday morning – Up at 5:30 AM for a 7 AM start. Problem – was out until 2:30 AM. Threw on some running gear and bolted out the door. Picked up normal pre-race breakfast (apple fritter, coffee) and ambled down the freeway. Get parked, changed, and situated in time to meet Yas and the Bean, and Penny before the race. Run into Lisa near the start line. Decide that a 2:10 would be a good goal time. (Kind of late to be thinking Half Marathon goal?) Remind myself that I’m here to do a thirteen miler. Not to set a PR. I am not peaked for a Half.

Monday 6:45 AM – Get in the start chute with 6,000 other runners. I see bandits. Guess if the organizers aren’t giving away shirts and goody bags there’s no reason to pay right? Hmm. Oh well.


Monday 7:00 AM – Starting gun sounds. Typical 6,000 runner race. I started by the 9:00 pace marker. Immediately run into walkers. Guess it must be a language barrier.

Monday 7:30 AM – Feeling good. I pass the 5K point. Make a potty stop at the porta potties. I’m feeling strong and not really working that hard.

Monday 8:00 AM – Pass through the 10K point. 1:01:20. Feeling good. Sweating profusely. Time for an Endurolyte fix. One problem though. 5:30 AM through everything together haphazardly. Must have thought I was running a 5K. No fuel. No electrolytes. Hmmmmm.

Monday 8:10 AM – Still feeling okay. We’re on a piece of trail where runners are going both directions. I’m on the lookout for those I know that are running (I Love Steaks, Wadiasoft, Rad Runner, a bunch of Cal Coasters) Lisa passes me going the other direction. She’s looking strong. We wave at each other. She yells some words of encouragement. I grunt.

Monday 8:15 AM – Getting close to the turnaround. I see Rad Runner heading back up toward the finish. She’s heads down and all business. Twitter friend Christina (biblio_phile) gives me a low 5.

Monday 8:19 AM - Get to the turnaround. 8 miles in. 5 miles to go. All uphill.

Monday 8:25 AMPenny is looking good. Looks like she’s on track to a new PR.


Monday 8:35 AM – 9.5 miles Starting to feel some fatigue. Sure would be nice to have an electrolyte fix! What was I thinking (or not thinking) this morning? This is a freaking half marathon! Slow down to a walk to crest a hill.

Monday 8:45 AM – Okay. Officially in some trouble here. Just past 10 mile mark. I think Keith Moon has been resurrected to play drums on my calves. I look down and see the Alien trying to break out of my right calf. Have to stop and release the cramp. Shuffle in to the 10.6 mile aid station. Grab three or four cups of gleukos. Looks like water. Tastes decent. But too little too late to save the day. Up to this point, I was on a 2:0x finish pace. Now it’s hang on and try to make the 2:10.

Monday 9:05 AM – 20 minutes since the aid station. I’ve made it 1.1 miles. That’s 3 miles per hour. If I do more than walk, my calves start cramping. Now, my attempt at jogging results in lower ab cramps. Time to throw in the towel and enjoy the weather and scenery. What did I say on Saturday? Live to play another day?


Monday 9:40 AM – Finish line. I’ve walked (yes folks – walked) two miles. Muster what I can to appear to be running across the finish line. These will not be pretty race photos. I don’t think I’m even going to look when they are released.

Monday 9:45 AM – Make it to the recovery area. Crap! Nothing left except water and Myoplex? Bananas – gone. Oranges – gone. Recovery drink – gone. No bagels or anything to use to replenish carbs. Hey organizers – there are still a ton of runners and walkers on the course! You’re going to leave them all high and dry! WTF?

Monday 10:00 AM – Assess the damage. Sore legs. Sore back. Sore abs. Unofficial finish time 2:40:57 (Garmin time). What went wrong? I took my stoopid pills. No water belt. No fuel. No Endurolytes. No training. Race plan at 6:50AM. What was I thinking? It just goes to show – you can fool a 5K or a 10K. But this 13 mile thing is a little more serious. I got *exactly* what I planned for.

Monday 10:30 AM – This is more like it!


Lisa, Penny, Yas (and the bean) and me enjoying the post race shade.


  1. That's so ridiculous that they ran out of all that food at the end, I know you sign some disclaimer but if people are left with the after-effects of not proper fueling, I'd be all over upset with the race director. For sure it deserves a letter, of some sorts. They also should have given you a discount after no goodie bags left. Well, I know you didn't run it as well as hoped but all which occurred up to the race, there's nothing wrong with it and you got the 13 miles in that you so desperately needed at probably a bit faster than on your own :). I love the pictures, thanks for including them!!! And the best part of this week??? It's only 4 days long....enjoy!!!!

  2. Ok I laughed at the language barrier line! I ran into alot of walkers and Lisa and I were near the back-so there must have been alot near the front.....hmmm

    I feel your pain! After mile 10 it all went downhill for me to!!! I was there in spirit with you! I finished in about 2:40:57 per my garmin-we must have been so close to each other at the finish! I would have cried if I had seen you...it would have made my day to cross the finish line with you!!!

    I cant believe they ran out of stuff, wait yes I can! I think thousands more ran this race or all the 5k'ers took all the stuff!! I wills end an email but I didnt go to find anything since I was in the med tent getting O2-hey they didnt run out of that!!!!

    It was wonderful seeing you! I hope you dont hate me for "nudging" you to run this....I'm sorry!!!

    I'll email you so I can send you the XL shirt!!!

    Awesome seeing you yesterday!!! cant wait to run with you in SF!!!

  3. Oh man, having gotten to mile ten and then having it turn into such a tough finish must have been hard. Congrats on pushing through!

  4. Glenn: I didn't even know you were planning to do this run. What a surprise! Very sorry to hear about the troubles you encountered out on the course. I get cramps all the time and when I read what you wrote about getting calf cramps at mile 10, it was like I immediately felt them. Ouch! Good job on finding the courage and strength to finish that run! You were faced with a lot of odds it sounded like. Hope to see you in SD.

  5. Congratulations on finishing a half marathon this weekend! I'm sorry to hear about the cramps. It sounds painful and difficult, but you were out there. I can't believe that there wasn't any food at the finish, either. Did they have way more entrants than they'd planned for?

    Dates with the kids and the wife sound fun! Great use of the long weekend!

  6. That is a big time bummer but I saw the food slowly dwindling away. Also, the food there wasn't actually part of the race it was just vendors set up after the race where many runners thought it was and then ended up taking more than necessary, and their families took a lot too.
    Oh things you notice while working an expo.

  7. Shocking that they ran out of food at the end, because surely there were plenty of plain ol' walkers who'd need 3+ hours. Oh well, pretty day and you met up with lots of your (women) friends. You do know how to attract 'em, Stud!

  8. Hope you are resting and recovering well! Sorry to hear about the painful race!

  9. I loved what you said about the language barrier with the walkers - that cracked me up. Way to push through past mile 10 and the Keith Moon calf attack...That is crap they ran out of stuff at the finish.

  10. Hi Glenn,
    What stoopid pills?:) You are funny and I enjoyed your race report and fab pictures:) I know how frustrating it can be with a bunch of walkers in front of you! GRRR! Oh, and not having fuel bites the big one! I died a slow death during my first two halfs because of this:( Chalk this one up as character building:) You are still a super stud in my book...you finished a half marathon and you toughed it out until the end!! Have a good one Glenn and take care:)

  11. Oh maaaaan!

    I guess we all have at least one race like that. I know I have. That's just awful that they ran out of food and electrolyte drink.

    You're still a rock star for pushing thorough and claiming your medal.

    Nice pictures!

    This coming Sunday they say it's supposed to be warm here, just an FYI.

  12. ouch you're much more of a party animal than me!

    Crappy that they ran out of stuff for you though!

  13. I'm sorry you weren't doing so hot on Saturday.

    I'm sorry about the cramp damper. Urgh. I can't believe they ran out of stuff when you got to the finish line. I mean you are way faster than me! I'm a true back of the packer and used to this but that's just ridiculous!

  14. well obviously we can blame the race directors here, as this was clearly supposed to be a 10 mile race and not a half marathon. yes, I enjoy blaming them. feels much better, right? :)

    I didn't even realize you were racing this weekend. I should unearth myself from the rock I'm living under. :(

  15. It was great seeing you. The company at the end was the best part of the race :-) I am sorry that things fell apart for you. I suppose you chalk it up to lessons learned. I am finishing up my race report (I'm a bit tardy) and my theme is that you have to respect the distance. Even when you can go out and run a half marathon on a given weekend, it isn't necessarily a walk in the park.

    Good luck this weekend in San Diego. I am sure you will have a blast.

  16. Next time just tear the roof off the sucker. Hey, at least you took your lumps on the course in stride, shows the frame of mind you're in right now. And shame on the race officials for not rationing better. This happens in big races with water and cups too. The faster folks take more than their fair share without realizing how many poor souls are behind them.

  17. fun times glen :) i personally enjoy race-gone-wrong reports, well as long as no one gets hurt of course. they're just always a little humorous!

    at least you got out there for a long run, right? you party harder than i do.... i can hardly make it to midnight. old grandma here. :)

  18. GOOD LORD. that is NUTS that they ran out of food.

    But, I suppose you finished and hammered it out. There is a lot to be said about that.

    I hate those stoopid pills. I take them about once a week.