The Most Random Post Ever!

Hi there! It’s been a while since I came to visit this little corner of the internet.  How is everyone doing?  I can’t believe I’ve been back in California for over a week — time flies when you’re having fun!  It also flies when you’re away from home for 11 hours during the week (9 hours at work and 2 hours commuting)… and when you’re in a daze due to jet lag on top of that, then it really feels like time is just slipping away.  That doesn’t mean I haven’t thought about blogging, but what thoughts I’ve had have been a little of this and a little of that.  So, without further ado, heres “The Most Random Post Ever!”

Running

After running a solid 25 miles while I was in Taiwan, I came back to the U.S. and fell into a big puddle of excuses – work and jet lag, just to name a couple.  Here’s how last week went:

  • Monday: arrived in SFO after 10 hour flight and no sleep.  Very tired.  Rest day.
  • Tuesday: still recovering from jet lag.  It was my first day back at work and I needed to slowly ease my way back into it.  Rest day.
  • Wednesday: got up early and ran! 4.2 miles at 10:50/mile.
  • Thursday: thought about running, but it was quite rainy, so I postponed the run to Friday morning. Rest day.
  • Friday: too tired from staying out late-ish the night before.  Rest day.
  • Saturday: trail run in Marin!  I almost flaked on this due to the rain, but I had planned to carpool with JT and I didn’t want to let her down.  It ended up being a wonderful run, though my left quad ached for a couple of days afterwards due to the downhill running.  7 miles at ~12:08/mile.
  • Sunday: since I only ran 11 miles for the whole week, I made myself go run for at least 1 hour.  I was hopeful for 9 miles, but my legs were still tired from Saturday’s trail adventures — which was reflected in my pace and heart rate.  6 miles at 11:09/mile.
  • Total: 17.2 miles.  Not great, but not bad for a travel/come-back-from-vacay week.

    From our trail run in the Marin Headlands.  The rain eventually stopped and the clouds lifted to give us a very pretty view!  (photo credit: JT)

    From our trail run in the Marin Headlands. The rain eventually stopped and the clouds lifted to give us gorgeous views! (photo credit: JT)

On Saturday’s trail run, my trusty Spibelt suddenly began to show significant wear and tear.  It’s held up for 2.5 years, but it’s a bit small for my iPhone, so I’m thinking about switching to the Flipbelt.  Anyone have experience with the Flipbelt?

Races

I currently have 3 races on the calendar: Brazen’s Summit Rock Trail Half Marathon in mid-December, Kaiser Half Marathon in early February, and Bay to Breakers in mid-May.  Summit Rock will be more of a “fun run with friends” than a race.  Which is good, because I’m definitely not in great trail running shape, plus it’s going to be an extremely tough course, with ~2,867′ elevation gain.  So I’m envisioning quite a bit of hiking mixed in with running.

As for Kaiser, I signed up as part of a group in honor of Cathryn‘s 40th birthday.  She’s eager to PR and we’re all going to cheer her on… and at the very least, eat some celebratory crepes after the race! 😉  When I first signed up for Kaiser, I had ambitions of PR-ing, or at least running a sub-2 hour half.  Then, I looked more closely at my recent 5K paces and realized that they’re very similar to when I started running in the spring of 2012… which means my fitness is probably closer to when I ran a 2:05 at the Oakland Half in March of 2012 than when I ran a 1:58 at Kaiser last year.  This isn’t surprising given that I had to take more than a month off from running in the middle of this year, whereas I ran last year’s Kaiser on the heels of marathon training and almost 2 years of continuous running.  However, there are 2 reasons why I think I can beat 2:05 : (1) Kaiser is a faster course than Oakland and the weather is usually more favorable/cooler, and (2) I’m a more seasoned runner and mentally stronger than I was in 2012.  I’m planning on following the abbreviated training plan that I used before Kaiser last year, but I’ll have to dial in the appropriate pace given my current fitness.

And then there’s Bay to Breakers, a race that’s been on my radar for years, mostly because it’s such an iconic San Francisco Race.  Having walked it 2 times previously as part of the non-racing (i.e., inebriated people in costume) parade, I haven’t felt especially inclined to sign up.  Also, it’s usually crazy expensive — upwards of $70, which is outrageous for a 12K race.  However, when they opened up registration for the 2015 race on Halloween, they offered a great deal — $39 for one day only.  Plus, this year’s Halloween costume, “sexy Luigi”, would function nicely as a running costume.  Sprinkle in a couple of friends, and voila! Registration complete.  This will definitely be a fun run!

Last but not least, I’ll most likely be running the Foster City 10-miler again, as it was a great tune-up race to Kaiser last year.   It was also a good way to stay motivated over the holidays.  As they did last year, the race organizer, Corrigan Sports, gave me a discount code to share with y’all — $10 off the 10-miler and $5 off the 5K with code JENLEE.  Prices go up on 12/1, so be sure to register soon!

Misc.

This section is truly random, so I’m going to just be lazy and do it bullet list-style:

  • Movies I watched on the plane that I heartily recommend: Boyhood, 22 Jump Street, and Fever Pitch.
  • Running movies online that I’ve watched recently and really enjoyed:
    • Western Time — a beautifully made and inspiring short film about Sally McRae’s experience at this year’s Western States 100.  Keep a tissue handy!
    • Catching Kayla — a 12-minute documentary made by ESPN about Kayla Montgomery, a high school indoor track champion from North Carolina who keeps running despite her Multiple Sclerosis.  I might have teared up a little at the end.
  • A recent REI purchase included this watch and 2 pairs of Injinji socks.  The watch was surprisingly cheap and plastic looking, so I’m returning it.  However, the socks are a lot better than I expected!  It seems like Injinji has stepped up the quality of their socks in the past few years.  The new socks seem slightly thicker (but still lightweight) and will hopefully hold up longer — though the older socks (3 pairs) are 2.5 years old and still going strong!
  • Just as I was beginning to consider running during work hours up in the Berkeley hills, a mountain lion was spotted today! And a deer carcass was found yesterday!  So I won’t be running there any time soon… and definitely not alone.  Scary!

OK, that’s the end of my very long and random post.  Hope y’all have a wonderful Thanksgiving!  Eat lots!

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About

Howdy! My name is Jen and I live in the San Francisco Bay Area. I like to eat, run, and blog, but not usually at the same time.

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8 comments on “The Most Random Post Ever!
  1. Angela says:

    Weeee, I knew there was a reason I was procrastinating signing up for Foster City!! Even more excited about it now.

    Welcome back!!!

  2. kimretta says:

    Ooh, I’ll be running a cheer station at Kaiser pretty close to the finish. Really excited to see all of you!

    • Jen says:

      Sweet! That’s the point in the race where we’ll definitely need cheering, so thanks in advance. 🙂 We talked about getting “Team Cat” shirts… not sure if that’s going to work out, but I think it would be awesome.

  3. Cathryn says:

    Yay for all the races and the documentaries as well, I’ve been dying to see that WS ones.

  4. MILF Runner says:

    OOOOOOoooooo! Mountain lions! That will make Jingle Bell Hell a little more exciting! Do they like donuts?

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