On June 2nd I raced in the San Diego Rock & Roll Marathon. This was my 5th marathon and 3rd time running this particular marathon. I decided to do this marathon again after I learned they were redoing the course. They eliminated all the parts I didn’t like, so how could I not run it again?! I am so glad I did! I ran my fastest marathon yet and had a blast doing it too!
My husband and I arrived in San Diego the afternoon before the race where we immediately headed to the expo so I could pick up my race packet and goodie bag. Expos are always fun for me because usually there are quite a few freebies and samples being handed out by different vendors, woohoo free food! I loaded up on energy bars and gels and then we headed over to Coronado Island to check in to our bed and breakfast. Originally we had planned to stay at the bed and breakfast we stayed at on our honeymoon, which happens to be right next to the starting line of the race. Unfortunately, there was an overbooking error with the travel site we booked with so we had to change our plans. We ended up staying at the 1906 Lodge. To put it lightly this place was amazing! The decor and grounds were beautiful and it was located within walking distance to all the shops, restaurants, the beach, and the Hotel Del Coronado. Below are a few pictures of the beautiful courtyard and some of the flowers growing in there.
After checking in, we headed downstairs to their wine and cheese hour. I was sad that I couldn’t over indulge that night for obvious gastrointestinal issues that would more than likely occur during the race the next morning if I did. However, I did enjoy a small glass of wine and a couple delicious pieces of cheese, this was a vacation too after all! After happy hour we headed over to the local diner Clayton’s, that the Lodge owner recommended. I needed a place where I could get my usual pre-run and race meal which is pancakes and egg whites, boring yes, but it works for me. I ordered a short stack of wheat pancakes and one scrambled egg white. What arrived looked more like a giant stack and 3 egg whites, but I’m not complaining!
So it’s race morning and I’m sitting at the desk eating my homemade pancakes and a banana that I brought along (by the time a race is over I usually can’t stand the sight of pancakes for a couple days). I was pretty calm, or maybe that was just the tiredness. Anyways, an hour later we were out the door and the next thing I know I’m at the race waiting in line at the port-a-potty. If you have done races before you know this routine. Use the bathroom, warm up run, stand in line again for the bathroom and this time do some stretching while you wait, and then head to the starting line. I’ve done a few races so I have this routine down pretty good.
Before I knew it the gun went off and I was running. Usually the first 6 miles I am thinking “oh hey only 24 miles to go….are you kidding me”! It’s best to not think this way and eventually I start breaking the race down into 5 mile increments. I also tried something new in this race and asked myself every 6 miles how I was physically feeling, it was a good check for me to make sure all the different pains I was experiencing were normal and not injury type pains, luckily they all appear to have been normal running pains.
Overall this was a great race! The weather was pretty perfect. It was cloudy and around 60 degrees, which is ideal running weather for me. The new layout of the course was much more interesting and challenging. Some of my favorite new additions were running through Old Town and seeing new neighborhoods and sections of Downtown. Some of the more challenging changes in this race came in the last 6 miles where there was a 2 mile stretch of uphill followed by some pretty severe downhill. My shins did not appreciate this for about a week after the race, however they have recovered and appear to be doing fine now.
As I neared the finish line I knew I was going to get a new PR (personal record), but the question was how big of one. My original goal was to run a 3:20 marathon, I knew I was already going to beat that so I reevaluated and decided to shoot for taking 10 minutes off my last marathon time (3:28:25). I crossed the finish line with a time of 3:17:22, I was ecstatic! Not only had I crushed my last time, but my body also felt pretty good. Later on that day I found out that I had finished 7th in my division, was the 26th overall female (out of 2,783) and took 212 place overall (out of 6,539). Not bad for a day’s work. The 26th female overall was most exciting to me! I found my husband who couldn’t believe I was already done, he wasn’t expecting to see me so soon. He congratulated me and we made our way back to the bed and breakfast where I was hoping the breakfast part might still be sitting out!
After a nice long hot shower we headed back out to spend the rest of the day at Seaport Village and then had dinner at one of our favorite places in San Diego, Blue Water Seafood Market and Grill. This place does seafood right! They only serve what they catch that day, and when they are out, they are out. I had the blackened red snapper on a salad and my husband had a salmon sandwich, both were delicious!
After dinner it was time for my favorite part, dessert! I was having two desserts that night to celebrate. The first was a hot fudge sundae from Ghirardelli, which my husband and I shared. I swear it was a race to see who could shovel the most in their mouth the fastest. He inhaled most of the fudge while I sucked down the whipped cream, it was not a pretty sight watching us devour it.
After the sundae, we headed back to the bed and breakfast and decided we better walk to get our second dessert. We headed over to the Hotel Del Coronado where we had our second ice cream of the night at MooTime Creamery. Seriously folks the combination I had at this place was incredible! I had peanut butter frozen yogurt and brownie batter ice cream, mixed it together with a piece of cookie dough, and then topped it with fudge, caramel, and whipped cream….AMAZING!
The last two days of our trip were spent going on walks around the island, eating, going to different shops, more eating, sitting outside enjoying the beach, and you guessed it more eating. One of my favorite stops on the eating extravaganza was at this little candy shop. That would be me holding a piece of chocolate covered bacon….I’m not ashamed to say that it was delicious! Also not ashamed to say that the Jelly Bellys and peanut butter cup fudge were also delicious (I may have overindulged slightly on this trip).