I know its been awhile, but I’ve been in vacation mode for the better part of a week. Now it’s back to reality – boo. I got back from San Francisco late Wednesday night after two delayed flights due to the stormy Midwest skies.
I’ve brought my running gear with me on almost all of my trips: trips back home to STL, trips to the lake, trips to see friends – all in hopes of getting out for a run. More times than not I don’t even look at my running shoes much less put them on. This trip was definitely different.
I got into California last Friday night. The next day was filled with preparation for our upcoming half marathon on Sunday: race expo, carbs, sleep. My alarm went off at 4:30 a.m. Sunday morning. ugh. I ate my usual banana and piece of toast and got dressed. With our tutus in tow, Erynn and I got into a cab and headed to the race. It was pretty chilly so we both wore jackets until just before turning in our bag at the gear check. There were about 5,000 runners that morning. We waited at the start line for a good 30 minutes listening to Rihanna and Beyonce all while the announcer was screaming things like, “Let’s go Divas!” It was a little comical I must say.
I could tell Erynn was getting nervous, but as we started running we both took off side by side in our tutus. This was my first race that I have run in a tutu and at first I really hated it. The tulle was getting caught between my legs and it was so annoying. About a mile in, it got much better and almost forgot I had it on. The course was very flat and ran right along the bay. It was cloudy that morning so it was the perfect running weather. There weren’t many spectators along the route, but I was ok with that because the scenery was stunning. I’m sure there were many Californians who took it for granted, but us Midwest runners get to look at trees or at best a lake most of the time so this was beautiful. The mountains and bay were inspiring.
I could tell that I didn’t train as hard as I usually do, because I started hurting at about mile 10. Erynn’s knees were killing her too but we didn’t stop. We ran together the whole way! About a tenth of a mile from the finish line they were handing out pink boas and plastic crowns. We grabbed some as we ran by and sprinted across the finish line.
Standing at the finish line were three shirtless firemen handing out our race medals. Wow. We were then handed a single red rose and a glass of champagne. I know this all sounds so cheesy, but it was wonderful.
My running shoes got some more good use on Tuesday when Erynn and I decided to go on a day long adventure. First up was climbing Corona Heights. The view from the top was amazing. I even challenged Erynn to run up and down the steepest part of the hill with me 3 times. That will take your breath away. After a little shopping (new Keds for me!) we decided to make the 6 mile trek from downtown to the Golden Gate Bridge. We ran up and down some major hills and from what Erynn told me these weren’t major hills at all. Ha!
We ran/walked a lot of it because – honestly – I am not conditioned to face those hills. I guess I need to start more hill training. We finally made it to the Golden Gate Bridge. We only made it about half way across before I wanted to get off. The shaking under my feet didn’t sit too well.
This was hands down the most active vacation I have ever had and I have to say that I love that. Experiencing a city through running is something that I am going to have to do more of. What a great trip.