**Warning: there is a photo of a naked person in this post.
'Parts' have been pixelated and are small, but I'm warning you anyway**
Update: The person in the photo found my blog while searching the internet for naked
Bay to Breakers photos and has left a comment.
It's a cable car :)
My training has been going so well for the past several weeks. I've been consistent and diligent. My cardio base is getting really solid. I've put in some amazing hill runs with the idea of going into Bay to Breakers feeling like the Hayes Street Hill ain't no big thang. This was accomplished :)
My left calf was feeling sore and super tight for a few days but only during running and walking down stairs. I had to extra-minimize the amount of running I was doing. No amount of rolling, Sticking, icing, or massage seemed to be making a difference, but I kept doing those things anyway. Additionally, something had been feeling 'off' in my mid-back and hip/pelvis. Things were feeling inflamed. I chalked this up to hormones...because they are a great scapegoat.
Awesomely, there was no lead-up ugly :)
The Day Before
This year's expo was easy to get to on public transportation with a three-year old, easy to find, easy to navigate and appeared more interesting than last year's by a long stretch. But I didn't do any exploring.
Happy girl on her first trip on BART
By the time I found the bib pick-up area, my number on the board and the line for my number, aforementioned three-year old was pretty done. Granted it was lunch time, so no expo exploration other than a quick trip to the Nuun booth to say 'hello.' The meltdown began as I tried to exit the premises. Must touch all the balloon sculptures. Cannot walk. Carry me, mommy. Somehow we made it back to the BART station in one piece. But the trains were loud...
sooooo loud, mommy
Transferring trains was most upsetting. She didn't want to get off the train even though we were going to get on another one. She let the world know she was not happy with this arrangement by cleaning the floor of the platform with her body while hollering, "don't wanna get off! don't wanna get off! let me onnnnn! let me onnnnn!" It would have been comical...but it wasn't.
But I had the bib, we made it home, we got lunch and were able to relax. Whew.
And the next day was...
Things were great right off the bat! Of course, because of the title, you know they didn't stay that way.
I didn't oversleep. My pre-race prep at home went off without a hitch. Parking at the train station was easy. I was on time for the train and even ran into some good friends while waiting :)
Nothing like seeing costumed runners at the crack of dawn waiting for the train!
I got a boo-hisssss for looking like a 'serious runner.' I assured the hecklers that it was, indeed, a costume. And anyway I had the samurai hair-do and a sparkly headband on... the combo = costume. At least to me it does.
I was so busy chatting with my buddies that I didn't take anymore awesome costume pics...but there weren't a whole lot this year anyway, or so it seemed. However, right as we parted for our respective corrals, I had the first naked runner sighting...
You can biggify this if you really want to...but I did pixelate the 'parts'
...nothing we haven't seen before...
fortunately, this year was not as cold as last.
There were LOTS of naked guys this year as compared to last...probably a function of the nicer weather. But there were very few women despite the mild temperatures, just LOTS of guys.
The scene at the start was your typical giant race starting line zoo...
I tried taking pictures but was having a hard time with the camera...as evidenced by the next two photos...
I put the camera away with the intention of taking it back out after the Hayes Street Hill. Also, as I mentioned before, there just didn't appear to be that many cool costumes at this point, which might have been due to the fact that I was in Corral A and with the faster runners. Or maybe I was just oblivious.
Best Points of the Day: I felt amazing going up the big Hill. I wasn't fast, but I was strong and steady. I credit this to all the Moesers I've been running. To top things off, my hip was feeling GREAT. When I crested the hill ahead of my previous time while feeling fantastic, I had high hopes for improving on last year's finish.
Shortly after I flew down the short descent from the summit that precedes a mile or so of fairly flat terrain, I felt that sense of elation and optimism quickly fade.
Within moments of hitting the 'flat' stretch right around the 3-mile mark, the stiffness I've been having in my left calf flared with a vengeance. I kept thinking it would loosen up, but by Mile 4 the stick of rebar that had implanted itself in my lower leg extended all the way up and into my hamstring. I stopped to the side and attempted to stretch and massage it out...to no avail.
It felt better to run than to walk...so that was good :P but every time I tried to push my HR over 145, the wooden deadness of my leg would transform into shooting, searing pain from my Achilles tendon up to just under my buttcheek. I kept things slow and steady and every so often made an effort to crank it up a notch... but it just wasn't happening. My struggle to survive superseded the desire to photo any more of the event...big-time blogger let-down :(
I should have worn a pirate costume because I felt like this guy.
He even has the wooden leg on the same side.
Running downhill and witnessing everyone around me open it up and blow by me as if I were standing still felt so lonely.
Also, this is when I saw all the naked men's butts. Butts, butts and more butts. Lots of butts.
Feeling fit and powerless is really frustrating. Finishing a race and not feeling tired just flat-out pissed me off.
And the kicker...
Getting passed by goddamned Gumby at the finish line was quite the tragi-comic moment. About this piece of the experience, I am rendered speechless.
I'm borrowing this photo from rachelhop.com. She took it last year. If I had seen Gumby right there behind me...well, it wouldn't have made any difference. I was already stumping along as best I could :(
The finish stats are as follows:
Time.... 1:14:01 (9:56 pace) 4 minutes slower than last year
In the top 22% of overall finishers, top 11% of all female finishers, and top 11% of women in my age group. Not as good as last year...which does bum me out a little...but it could have been worse. Finishing upright and with no residual injury is always a good thing. And it was kind of fun...sort of. If running with a wooden leg is ever fun.
And look what they gave me for my efforts...
And no, I didn't drink it.