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Hollywood Half Marathon

First, let me recap the week…

  • Monday I Elliptigo-d to school and back again.
  • Tuesday was the official start of Hillview’s track season. We had our typical 100 plus athletes show up. The 7th grade boys group is small but the others will be fierce. As a starter workout I had them do 4 x 2 minutes… Then we did 10 repeats up the Greg Anderson stairs… I heard that I scared some of them away. Well, they decided against trying to be a distance runner and went the next day to work with the sprint coach.  Later I went to the HDR workout. We did 3 times 7 minutes. My goal was 8 min/mile which was my hoped for half marathon pace. More on that to come.
  • Wednesday I Elliptigo-d to school. I coached a workout where we ran a little longer than 3 miles. I had the athletes do 6 repeats up one of the aqueduct dirt hills. I Elliptigo-d home looping a bit to make my 6 miler into a 9 miler.
  • Thursday/Friday – rain. Track practice was cancelled and I did not ride the GO. And, with a race Saturday I figured I could taper…

Saturday was the Hollywood Half Marathon. I ran this two years ago and I recall that I did not like it. But some of my friends, the Rubles and Guttierrezzes were going so I thought I’d give it a second chance. I still don’t like it, but I am getting ahead of myself.

My goal, as I mentioned before was around 8 minutes/mile or 1;45. I set the virtual partner feature on my watch for 1:45. I lined up at the 8 min/mile corral to get ready for the race. At 6 am they let the wheel chairs go, then the elites. Then 1 wave of runners, then 3 minutes later another, then another. I was in the 4th group… I think. I was near the front of my wave and got into the free fairly quickly. But within a few minutes I encountered walkers.  There were walkers EVERYWHERE. Hundreds of people either had no clue about the corral start or they did not care. For 4 miles I was bobbing and weaving between walkers and very slow runners! I cannot say how many times I bumped elbows.

Meanwhile the course goes up Hollywood Blvd. It makes a left goes up hill a bit and makes a u-turn. It goes back to the Blvd. It does this 4 times. Then It makes its way back down the other side with 4 more left turn, u-turn side trips.  Between the bobbing, weaving, uphills, downhills, turning and u-turning I was already falling off my pace by 4 miles.

At about 4 those doing the 10K take a Uturn. The coarse got remarkably freer.. Until at around 8 or 9, on the way back we encounter that same u-turn. Now thousands of 10K runners who are going at 2 hour or more pace are filling up the center lane of road. The lane by the curb is free but it badly slants to the left. I weaved through the 10k walkers to the middle of the road for a block and then… oops here comes a left turn…. for half marathoners only…. weave, make the turn, come back, repeat…. Kind of frustrating. I sent a facebook message to the organizers. I got no reply. I do not think I will do this one again.

I finished in 1:45:53… So, overall I was happy with how I did. I felt strong finishing.  Yeah! They gave me a HUGE medal!


Today, I got myself out of bed early… I have missed a number of scheduled GO runs.  Today, I got on the GO at 6 am and rode the same 25 mile route from a few weeks back ending at church! I set a couple of Elliptigo PRs!  (After church I had to ride the GO 5 miles home straight into the wind!) I’d put it in the car but it does not fit in the Camry and my wife won’t drive the new Colorado….


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April 2016


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