So this past Sunday my plan was the run the Camarillo Half Marathon as a training run. A way to gauge my speed over a longer distance than 5K/10K. With the Malibu Half Marathon only 6 weeks away, this would be a great, local opportunity to kick up the training a notch.
But sometimes things don't go quite as planned.
I paid $65 to enter this race, a significant amount of money for a local training run. Would have been a lot cheaper to just go out and do a hard "tempo" run locally, but that's no fun.
My body was not quite ready to do a full bore half marathon on Sunday. The week prior I ran a solid 21 miles and 2 week prior I ran a decent 5K. But last week was HOT, which made me tired, cranky and dehydrated. My training was mediocre at best.
So come Saturday, I decided to run an hour, not hard or anything. If I was really planning to do an "all out" half marathon the next day, I would not have run more than 30 minutes the day prior.
In any case, what I noticed is that my right hip flexor (where the upper inner leg meets the groin area) was sore. I believe my body was still in recovery mode from the prior 2 weekend's runs. I crossed my fingers and hoped my body would magically feel better Sunday morning.
I woke up. Felt pretty much the same. But I had to go and make the most of my $65.
Long story short. I actually ran pretty well for the first 30 minutes of the race. I was in 6th place overall, behind 5 much younger stallions than this old geezer, when 5th place stopped and turned around. We had shared some doubts about the course (e.g. did we make a wrong turn) magnified by a lack of mile markers. He stopped and asked someone, they apparently didn't know, and he turned around. I, the sheep that I am, followed him, soon realizing we had indeed been going the right away.
At that point, my hammies felt like rocks. My right hip flexor was tight. I slowed down considerably as we both ran back to the start. Not wanting to be confused with the finishers, I tore off my number and called it a day. My body needed a little break.
It is now Tuesday night. While I didn't actually take a day off, I ran light the past few days and am feeling better. Next stop...a 20 to 22 miler this Sunday, followed by a 5K next weekend.
My good friend, 57 year old Dave Louks, was the top masters runner in the Camarillo Marathon. This workhorse ran a 2:58, good for 5th place overall out of 235 finishers. The VC Star contacted me to ask about the race. Apparently there were some issues (that I wasn't aware of given I didn't do the whole course). So I had them talk to Dave and...wallah...he is prominently featured in this article that, unfortunately, highlights some major shortcomings of this inaugural race. I do hope they can work out the kinks and come back next year.