5k season that wasn’t

Its been a tough year. Battling flu and food poisoning, training suffered with me being 10lb under weight after pacing Carlsbad marathon (3:15). Still I have signed up for multiple 5k races a year ago.  First was Carlsbad 5k, which I upgraded to the all day 20k last minute… I wasnt feeling a PR but thought I can hold an ok pace for the 5k’s.  Plus its more social as Bessy and her friends were doing it.  The first one went as planned under 20, but I caught an asthma attack. So had to tone it down for #2 to slip in at half marathon pace.  Thinking Im recovered for 3… i had my heart beat jump way to high and had to shut it down for a minute.  This lead to race 4 which was just a victory lap jog.  I chalk this off as good training. Next is triton 5k a week later…

We decided to bike to the race, for awesome post race bike discount brunching (Galaxy Taco). Race rule… never look back. On ride up lost bessy a bit so was looking back constantly. And then bam, right into a fence, where i sliced my knuckle bad, blood pouring out as if i made a donation. In addition feels like i was stabbed in my collar bone, likely bone bruise. I continued on to make it to race medics who bandaged me up. I was more mentally shot than physically for the race. Some how overcame pain and demons in my head to sneak in under 20min with bessy.  It sucks cause I was well prepped for this one, doing the classic 4x1mile at goal pace workout few days before.

Round 3: a week passes, ACT 5k : Last year I won this race. Probably because it was long and i had some in the tank. This year, I previewed the course , and once again long (3.3 mi). Time goals out the window, this is a position race. I had a good start leading a pack for 1.5 miles. then backed off a bit to save a final kick for that extra. 400m. I let the guys take the lead, but then see Bessy blow by me hard near the finish, and knew she was much stronger, and they all gapped me too good that my plan failed. I jogged in the rest knowing it was over. Bessy ended up storming forward to get 2nd overall of all genders. Amazing considering she joined this race 15 min before the start! At the awards ceremony… the most sexist thing happened. They assumed the top 3 would be male. So they didnt even call bessy up! I had to go to the announcer to correct him and bessy got what she earned.

Yes my run form isnt that great but I am working on it. Also, perhaps too much racing, as I am getting mentally burned out to go hard… but I still show up for the social aspect.  What I am really learning, to be a good runner you dont need to sign up for races training alone, just run with some good company and you can work with each other to push your best.

How can official race photos make you a better runner?

cityheights-runners-both-form

(Us this past weekend at this trail race)

Official race photos have lost a bit of value for some since camera phones are small enough to carry along during an event for impromptu selfies. But, does a selfie really void the race photo?

A selfie is an outlet to share how we perceive ourselves, a beautiful scenery, or as proof should marathoninvestigation.com dispute a performance!  However the official race photos are much more valuable, to an athlete, than just documentation of the accomplishment itself.  Only the official race photos clarify what even friends or coaches don’t always catch.

The following 2 KEYS have helped me increase my performance overall in the 5k to marathon, and build confidence in myself!

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All odds against us (per chance Friday the 13th weekend)

This year we decided to repeat pace the Carlsbad Marathon 26.2, upping the challenge from 3:25 to 3:15. All the training and prep for this was set in the books, till 2 days before the race:

  • A/C in our car shatters metal pieces into the timing belt. Not a quick fix.
  • SANDAG decides to shutdown the rail services for the weekend to work on the track.
  • Work week was tough, I (Roger) had to bike in cold rain that I got sick with mild bronchitis.

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Stabbed on my run today

A week ago, I had my bike stolen from me when I went to swim after work (Hilton Bay Front San Diego).  The thief followed me in, and cut the lock 2 minutes later. Here is the video:

I had a hunch, I would see the bike again as it is a rare production bike and had distinct markings. This is the bike. the thief took the aero bars off:

bike-tag

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World Championships?

So my last post I stated how I was awarded a slot to that Age Group (AG) world championships in Canada. This is at least a $1500 round plane trip with AirBnB to be budget.  USAT was pressuring the athletes 2 weeks after to immediately deposit $50 for a secured slot.  I questioned, what does this deposit go to?  Not the combined extra $600 for registration and team uniform…  but rather for USAT “support staff” (none which will benefit me) to fly out there.  The deadline approached, stressing me out to pay the same price of an ironman race; yet this race was just going to be a 1k swim and 5k run.  I turned it down, looking at it two ways. Continue reading

Hormones, Humility and Healing

Disclaimer: This is a personal post primarily for females to adjust the perception of fragility.

Female hormones can be a tornado, yet healthy food and exercise can stabilize the extremes. Hormones are especially an enemy for women when we are on birth control where the foreign hormones blend with natural hormones in such a way that we precisely do not even know how we feel.  Being a woman already means internal pain due to all the wonders around menstrual cycle and the weeks around that. Besides the natural miserable status, why would a woman choose voluntary discomfort in fitness? When discomfort is a choice, when it is a door to a goal, it becomes empowering.  When this choice expresses mental strength, the physical “growth pain” makes us feel like we aren’t victims in our bodies for a moment in time.  We have overcome what we can’t change to reach a result that we wanted. Fitness creates roots of self-confidence, self-value, and health that can counter balance the negative wave of contraception hormones hell. Although hormones are unpredictable, the occurrence of feelings should not be silenced. Sport has given me the ability to listen to my inner voice that I wouldn’t have listened to in the past.  Below I share why this was profound to my safety. Continue reading

“Rog-nar” long drive to Santa Cruz Aquathlon Nationals race

Finally a national championship that is within reasonable distance – Santa Cruz.  This particular race you can earn a spot for the world championships as an amateur.  I did the math and found the most cost-effective and flexible solution is driving up and sleeping in the car, considering I have no days I can take off work.

Research has proven long periods of sitting is bad for your health, even if you exercise.  So let me tell you what I do (and you can too). I call it ‘Rog-nar’, based off the ‘Ragnar’ run relay challenge where you drive while others run, until it’s your turn.

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