My Blog List

Monday, February 8, 2010

And All the Little Ants are Marching....

Yesterday was great! I ran in my first ever 5K, The San Francisco Kaiser Permanente Half Marathon and 5K. There was supposed to be rain, but it was sunny and beautiful. My husband ran/walked in it also. Poor guy has what he thinks to be torn ligament in his knee, so he had to walk some of it when the pain was getting to be too much. Both of us were there at the start line with 10,000 other people. I mean, this race was WAY BIGGER than I expected when I registered for it.
So, we were waiting at the start line (err, well behind the start line because of the mass of people). They played Dave Matthews Under the Table and Dreaming and then did a count down from 10 to the start. After the gun sounded, we were off, or rather we were slowly walking to get to the start line. Once I passed the start line, I was ready to set my personal record, or maybe not. WTF! is all I can say about the mobs of people and strange lost people wandering around right after the start line, walking and getting in the way. I felt like I was bobbing and weaving for at least 5 minutes and I was annoyed. I mean, I don't mind if you want to walk halfway through b/c you need a rest, but the race was not a run/walk race, it was a running race. I believe these people were in the middle of the crowd, not because they were in the race, but because they had no idea what they were supposed to do and stepped somewhere they shouldn't with a pack of over 2,300 5K runners nipping at their heels. It was like once I felt like there was a clear pathway for me to get started, there stood someone else, blocking my way. I had a long and encouraging chat with my big sis after the race to talk about it, since she is my go-to source, she says that I better get used to this if I'm running in larger races. She ran the Chicago Marathon a while back and she said she was bobbing and weaving for like 5 miles into that race. That sucks!!!
At any rate, after the first couple of minutes, the crowd thinned out and I was able to get moving. I set my i-pod to AFI album, Crash Love and I was off. Golden Gate park is just beautiful! I spent a lot my running time, just taking in all of the scenery. There were actually a few hills, which I wasn't really prepared for. My calves are sore today, which is normally not the case after my much longer than 5K runs on Sundays. I think the downhills were what my muscles weren't used to. It was still fun to work my butt off, huffing up a hill and then to be able to almost glide downhill. I think I'm going to get a sports watch after this. I had no idea how I was tracking or anything the entire race and I wish I would have known, so that I could have maybe sped it up a little bit. I loved all of the people that we passed on the sidelines cheering, that was really fun!!
I finished with a chip time of 30:38 and a pace of 9:53. I was kind of irked. I would have liked to run it at a pace of 9:30. But those damn people in the beginning screwed me up a bit!! My overall place was 483 out of 2322, my gender place was 219 out of 1584 females and I finished 165 out of 911 in my age division, so not bad!
I'm glad I did the race, it was experience to help me move ahead in my journey as a new runner. I'm thinking of signing up for a 10K. It's recommended in Hal's training plan to run a 5K and a 10K. I think it is beneficial to get the experience before I run the half.


  1. A 10K would be good. It is irritating to weave around lots of people. Find smaller races too to get some PRs. A sports watch is totally worth it. I use it all the time. In fact I have several. I even use it at work. I teach and often need a timer or stopwatch. The kids love it. Glad you took the time to look around and enjoy the scenery. Unless you are winning the race for a lot of money this is how to do it. Downhills are hard on my knees!

  2. AJH, which sports watch would you recommend? I'm looking for something not too expensive.

  3. Congrats on a great first race! Yes throngs of people are irritating. Find a nice smaller race and line up according to pace and you'll have a better time. I am partial to Garmins but they aren't exactly cheap. Well worth the $$ though.

  4. Nice job. I've done a few races where the walkers were not in the back and it was very frustrating.

    I don't know where you live but I've run the Plate to Plate for the past 2 years. It's a fun race and you get to run into AT&T Park. It's a 5k but apparently they are adding a half marathon this year. It's usually in the later part of August.

    Also there is a 5k/10k in Danville at the end of May - the Davil Mountain Run.

  5. Congrats on your 1st 5K and nicely done! I was in San Fran last week until Saturday. If I knew about the race, I would have stayed an extra day to run it. It sounds like a great event!

  6. Glad you had a good experience... and more glad the weather was nice.

  7. Congrats on your first 5k! I'm training for my first 1/2 in March and ran my 1st 5k in November. I always love to find a new runner like me. Plus a run in the wine country speaks to my heart!! Good luck with your training!!

  8. Cool! Two new runners :) I have run no races yet, but I'm training for may first half-marathon in May.
    Great time on the 5K...despite the mob.

  9. Love your blog! I am not new to running but I new to running with a goal in mind. I can totally agree with your frustration during the race... people should be more aware of those who actually want to run! I hope your next race is a better experience!