My 2018 track season has officially opened! After a few hours and an IN-N-OUT burger combo to give me hindsight, I have positive feelings about my race experiences this weekend.
Day #1 Bryan Clay
Heat sheets didn’t come out until 20 minutes before the race, 13 girls were on the start line, the leader went out in 63 and closed in a 60, and I was boxed in (too far) behind her. It was chaos. To quote Kirsten: “your race looked like Victoria’s Secret on Black Friday.”
Takeaways: despite thinking “oh this is a good spot I’m right on the inside” it was in fact not a good spot (unless I wanted to get boxed in #sad). At 300m to go when the leaders surged I was trapped and couldn’t find any free room to run. I managed to finish strong but was frustrated with the 2:07.23 – even though I know times don’t really matter at this point in the season (I will keep telling myself this until I believe it). I know I have more to give!
Highlight of the meet was watching the 1500s at night. The atmosphere was electric and the depth of the field was insane. It almost made me want to run a 1500m. Almost.
Jack raced 3:48.37 aggressively, looking strong, focused, and springy (until the last 50m when he “sat in the chair”). His time was quicker than he ran all of last season! (#SpeedGoogles). It was also awesome to see Lindsey run 4:10 (I had to get out a second set of speedy goggles) and Justin Knight ran 3:36 in the same race that Josh Kerr broke the American collegiate record in 3:35. WOW, by the end of the night I was wearing so many speed goggles Jack had to guide me to our Uber.
Summary: Bryan Clay really has it going on (especially in the music department, the playlist was as fire as the 1500s #HilaryDuff).
Day #2 Beach Invitational
After finishing Season 2 of the OC (when in California), Jack and I packed up and left our somewhat sketchily-located Airbnb and headed to Long Beach. They’ve completely redone the stadium so it looked nothing like my fond memories racing there in my UBC days.
I was in the fastest section and I was the fastest seed so I wanted victory but alas, I finished 4th in my race. Tactically, I ran much better than yesterday, getting out quick and into a better position. But the sloooooow down from 200-400m was brutal. After a decent 200m we went through 400m in 65… Which feels WAY different than the 60/61 I’m lusting after. I heard someone saying it’s more fun to run an 800 off a slow first lap but I have to disagree. It’s an uncomfy pace and the transition to sprinting at the end is a rough one when you’re not in peak racing shape. I attempted to make a move at 300m to go, but my hesitation cost me and instead of powerfully striding to the front I zig-zagged around in a confused manner similar to when I was looking for my Uber pool pick up spot after the race. OK it wasn’t that bad but it was a good reminder that the 800m is not kind to hesitation.
The more I write this the more fired up I am to get back out there. I did have the usual moment before the race of “WHY AM I DOING THIS” but the aftermath is always the reminder: because it makes me feel accomplished, powerful, and alive.
I’ve heard that patience is a virtue. So while I’m keen to showcase my fitness and prove to myself that I’m capable of more, I’ll settle for two negative splits and an injury-free start to the racing season! That’s already more than I can say for last year.
- Did I already mention we went to IN-N-OUT? Real talk, Jack said Whitespot makes a better burger and I’m going to have to agree with him. Still worth the hype though.
- I made an excellent grocery list and we managed to make all our meals off one $36 grocery shop #HumbleBrag
- Spending time/traveling with Jack (aaaawwwwwwwww)
- Seeing so many familiar faces at the meets! Track family is the best family ❤
- The pollution in LA! My track hack is next level. Explaining track hack to your Uber/Airbnb companions gains you some sceptical looks. I swear I don’t have TB or smoke 5 packs a day!
- Related to the above… The traffic! Getting anywhere took twice as long as I expected
- The mucus. I’m feeling way better than last week but the amount of snot I’ve produced over the last few days is certainly a personal best
- The blisters! There was more fire on the track that my times indicate – the side of my foot has been roasted off. At least my feet looked great in my new ELMN8 spikes
Time to get back to work. I think my next race will be around the second week of May… Stay tuned and thanks for reading!
PS Wondering what protein bar I had after my race?