Do your New Year’s Resolutions include running a race? Mine definitely does! I want to run one of all races from a 5K to a full marathon. The half marathon I will be completing is the OC Half Marathon. I mentioned awhile back that I am a proud OC Marathon Ambassador or 2016. The OC Marathon offers a 5K, Half Marathon and Marathon. I ran the half marathon last year and absolutely LOVED every moment of it. I have decided, I loved the half so much last year, I want to return to the half again including a personal PR goal. I am also planning to run the 5K race on Saturday as a shake out run before the big race! As we get closer to the race, I will share my personal training plan to get ready for the race and hopefully beat my race time from last year.
Signing Up For The OC Half Marathon
The course, the organization, the people and the race itself are the epitome of the perfect race. The race is alongside the beach, includes easy transportation from the start and finish line and a beautiful medal to commemorate your race. Added bonus: if you run all 3 Southern California half or full marathons consecutively (OC, Long Beach and Surf City), you can get the Beach Cities Challenge medal. The 1 pound medal and bragging rights are worth starting the Challenge! Plus, this Friday is the last day before prices increase! So if one of your New Year’s resolutions is to start saving money, here is your chance to conquer two goals in one! What are you waiting for? Head over to the website, sign up here and come run with me!
Remember to check back this week for training plans for the 5K and half marathon race. Happy Tuesday!
Back to Monday again? Luckily, this week is less than 3 days!! With a few days of work and our next big trip around the corner, I am thrilled for this week. There are still a decent amount of errands to get ready for Thailand and I would still like to keep with some of my regular weekly plans so it will definitely fly by. The weekend was filled with cycle classes and seeing “The Night Before.” I would highly recommend seeing the movie as it was hilarious (definitely better than I thought it would be). After the movie, we walked around Old Town Pasadena which led me to into my new favorite store. Nice and simple, it was called Distant Lands – half bookstore, half traveling items. I was in heaven as we even scored a book about Thailand. A store that had at least 5 globes as decoration is my kind of store. The rest of our weekend was filled packing and cleaning for the week.
I got such a wonderful email over the weekend – I am an ambassador for the OC Marathon!!
I ran the race last year and absolutely LOVED every moment of it. It was my favorite race and the last year to complete the Beach Cities Challenge. I am thrilled to support such a wonderfully organized and aesthetically appealing race. The question for me right now is if I should sign up for the half marathon or the full? I will be back after our Thailand trip to share details of the race, how to sign up and my training plan.
Tell me: Do you normally follow a training plan for a race?
Last Sunday was one of my proudest moments. Last October I set out to do my first half marathon in Long Beach, CA. I found out that if you run all 3 Southern California half-marathons consecutively, you can get the Beach Cities Challenge medal. Of course, who doesn’t want an extra 1 pound medal? I made up my mind I was going to get that medal and convince the husband to do it with me. We completed the Long Beach Half in October and Surf City Half in February with the OC Half being the last one to get that medal. Due to the unfortunate back pain I had leading up to the race and it being in the middle of waiting for MRI results, I told myself simply to just finish the race.
On Friday we attended the expo to pick up at our bibs at the OC Fairgrounds. The expo was very easy to get in, get our bibs and get out. We visited a few booths and of course I picked up a new Bic Band headband to sport the day off. It’s all about matching in those race pictures!
Bright and early Sunday morning we drove down to Fashion Island where the race started. This is the first and only race I have done where the start and finish were at different places. The great part about that was we parked and were at the start line within 10 minutes. We knew we would have to figure out getting back but thought we to ask a friend who was at the race or get a shuttle back. The weather was cool and overcast, the perfect racing weather. Average temps stayed in the mid 60s- welcome to joys of racing in California! The race started at 6:15am and our coral got running by 6:30. Again, this was the fastest start we have ever participated in. I hope all races are like this. From the time it took to park and start the race was approximately 25 minutes. Any racer knows it doesn’t get better than that.
The course was one of my personal favorites. Starting at Fashion Island, the course went to Corona Del Mar beach and through residential areas in Newport Beach. I loved getting a real estate tour imagining how often I would visit the beach if I lived in one of those beach mansions. The entire course was heavily supported with aid stations every 1.5 – 2 miles. The only part of the course I did not like was when the half marathoners and marathoners split off miles 7, there was a very narrow trail that slowed most people down. Once you got past the 1/4 of a miles trail, you were back to open running space. The course consisted of small rolling hills until miles 11 with the largest hill through the race. Leading up to the race I was very intimidated by the hill but after Ragnar, it seemed like a piece of cake. The race finished at the OC Fairgrounds in Newport Beach.
This was my 2nd best time for a half marathon. I paced myself through the race without stopping. Crossing that finish line left me with a smile on my face for not only doing better than I thought I would do but finally completing that challenge. After the finish, we walked through the line, got our snacks and caught our breath. Getting back to our car at the start line required an Uber and a lot of patience to get around the traffic jam of everyone trying to leave.
All in all, we were happy with the very easy start to the race and the great course. The medal was beautiful and the t-shirt was one of my favorites which just added to an already great race! So was the 1 pound medal worth it? Hell yes! At this point, I am definitely considering doing it again next year. Needless to say though I am ready for “summer break”. 4 half marathons, 1 relay race and a handful of 5Ks in 8 months is why running and I need a little separation.