RNR San Fran 1/2 Marathon

9 Apr

Sunday at 7am was the start of the inaugural Rock N Roll San Francisco 1/2 Marathon. Sunday was also my birthday! Now I know most people on their birthday would rather be lazy or relax or do whatever they want. No not me! I am totally crazy and wanted to run a 1/2 marathon on my birthday!

Don decided that we needed to leave the house 2 hours before the race started. Which meant a 4:20 wake up call. I went out to the kitchen to put my bagel in the toast, Happy Birthday Leslie, Sylvester(the cat) ate half of it last night. What?? I ended up having some oatmeal. I have only started to eat oatmeal but I have never tried it before a run. There goes “nothing new on race day!!”

It was still dark. We had lots of time to hang out. Here is Alana and I with Alcatraz in the background as the sun came up:

You may have noticed the giant cupcake on my head?!? Tracy got me this cupcake headband a couple of years ago for my birthday so now I wear it every year. You also may have noticed I plastic wrapped the entire headband because I sweat like a beast and I may have ruined it, if there had not been any “protection.” I also wanted to wear it the rest of the day! πŸ™‚

Plan A: PR 2:08:xx if I was having a fantastic day.
Plan B: 2:10-2:12 Pretty much what I was expecting
Plan C: Anything over 2:12 I would have been happy just as long as the race went good!!

Alana and I decided we were going to run together. I was nervous for multiple reasons. 1-She is fast and strong. But she had a baby(Emilia) 6 months ago. Lucky for me she has not been working on her speed…but she does push the baby stroller!! She is just getting back into racing after doing Boston at 18 weeks pregnant! 2-I did not want to go out too fast and blow up at the end! We decided we were going to run strong and have fun!

Here is the Elevation chart-Not exactly an easy course! πŸ™‚

Onto the race. Alana, Ilana, and I started in corral 10.
We went directly uphill when we started! Dang it! Just ease into it! We went downhill. We had some flats.

First couple of miles we were warming up.
The Golden Gate Bridge was ahead of us. The fog was disappearing as we were getting closer.

We hit some more hills going into Golden Gate Park. Not just some hills. Some steep hills. We had just hit the 5k mark going uphill. We passed a guy who (looked like) taking some coverage of a speed walker. He yelled out I like your cupcake. He asked if it was my birthday. I said yes…but totally out of breath! He ended up signing me Happy Birthday in Italian. What a treat that was. We kept chugging up the hills until we were very close to the bridge.

Another photo-op:

We were at about mile 5 pretty much on track for a 2:10. I am glad that they capped the entrants to 5,000 because it was crowded but not awful on the bridge. We did a far amount of weaving in and out of people. Our pace slowed a bit but the views were amazing.

We hit the half way mark. Had a steep downhill on trail no less. This was the view:

We proceeded to go directly up a steep hill back to the other side of the bridge. We were keeping an eye out for friends that were in front of us and in back of us. We saw Ilana. It was so fun…we screamed to her!!

I had a lot of people comment on my cupcake. A lot of people said Happy Birthday. That was fun!

We were still weaving in and out of people. We wanted to try to get some “free” speed with the slight decline on the bridge. We got to mile 9 just off the bridge. Still feeling good. Had a little more steep downhill than flat gravel trail. At this point I stopped looking at my watch. Just after 10 I was feeling the burn and I know if I had not been running with Alana…I would have slowed down. Dig deep!

The flat gravel lasted maybe another mile and a half?! We hit mile 12 and we were at 1:59. (I only know that cause Alana told me) πŸ™‚ We had to go uphill one last time…someone kill me! A guy did say he liked my muffin hat. That was funny. Another short downhill. We were all of a sudden on flat ground with maybe a quarter-mile to go. We talked about how fun the race was and that we were happy to have run it together!

Monica from Run Eat Repeat passed me right before we hit the finish line. I yelled Go Monica and she waved! I knew she was running the race as well but figured she would be way in front of me. She was one of the “celebrities” I met at the Surf City Expo.

2:10:08! Not a PR but awesome race. I accomplished all of my GOALS! Had such a fun birthday run.

The medal is easily one of my top 3 favorite RNR medals! It has a red ribbon too which is awesome because they are always blue.

I have done a ton of RNR races and this was my favorite so far!! Awesome Course!! Very organized for an inaugural event! Unfortunately they are going to change the course next year.

Have you ever done a RNR race?

What do u like to do on your birthday?

12 Responses to “RNR San Fran 1/2 Marathon”

  1. tribalancegirl April 9, 2013 at 4:33 PM #

    I’ve done the full San Fran marathon and I know what you are talking about regarding the hills. Holy hamstrings! Also, LOVE LOVE LOVE your cupcake hat. So cute and so special to run your bday race hat. You spent your bday perfectly!
    I’ve never done a RNR, but always wanted to do the San Diego and VA beach.

    • Leslie @ TriathleteTreats April 9, 2013 at 7:01 PM #

      Yes!! HOLY hamstrings is right!! πŸ™‚ I want to do the SF marathon too!!
      Thanks I love my cupcake hat. I am celebrating with some Portland Peeps on saturday and I might wear it again! πŸ™‚

  2. Abby @ Change of Pace April 10, 2013 at 12:19 PM #

    Love the cupcake headband and the fun mid-race photos! Congrats on a great race and fun birthday!
    We ran our first marathon (the inaugural RNRAZ) on my 20th birthday. I remember thinking that it was the worst birthday ever! Now, I love to get in a good sweat session on my birthdays!
    We also ran the RnR Denver half last year about a month after IMCA. It was awesome!

    • Leslie @ TriathleteTreats April 10, 2013 at 1:35 PM #

      I love RNRAZ!! It is the perfect time to go down there! I was at RNR Denver last year!! How funny! Loved the course..but I was in a heavy week of training for IMAZ so it basically a training run. πŸ™‚

  3. Art @ Fit at Fifty April 11, 2013 at 6:07 PM #

    Looks like a great race!

    • Leslie @ TriathleteTreats April 11, 2013 at 6:10 PM #

      It was so much fun!! It seemed pretty put together for being the inagural year! πŸ™‚ I definitely recommend it!

  4. Jonathan94002 April 12, 2013 at 9:26 PM #

    I loved that race. It was well organized. It was incredibly scenic. The hills weren’t so bad, really. The major downside was how narrow the running lanes were on the bridges.

    • Leslie @ TriathleteTreats April 13, 2013 at 1:53 PM #

      I totally agree! I think next year they are going to try and block off some of the driving lanes on the bridge so they can open it up to more people.

  5. Herbivore Triathlete April 13, 2013 at 4:54 AM #

    Wow, what a great experience. I’ve never done a RNR, they sound like a lot of fun. I am so jealous of the scenery, gorgeous! Congrats on a great race, sounds like you not only met your goals but had fun as well. Happy Birthday!

    • Leslie @ TriathleteTreats April 13, 2013 at 1:47 PM #

      RNR’s are fun! but they are usually BIG. Lots of people. Thats how they make money! It was nice because it was the smallest RNR I have done!! Always good swag too!

  6. Kara April 14, 2013 at 4:09 PM #

    Congrats and happy (belated) birthday!! I LOVE birthday races. And holiday races. Hah! IMLP is actually the day before my birthday this year, so I’ll (hopefully) be celebrating finishing πŸ™‚ great job!!

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