I’ve run further than 13.1.
I guess I am really, super-legit training for a MARATHON.
For my first fifteen mile run (that is still insane to me), I headed across my Bay Bridge to run another bridge. A rather iconic one…
My training bestie, Velia is training for a half marathon and loved the idea of running across the Golden Gate Bridge. She didn’t intend to do the same distance so we parked at Aquatic Park for her to do a post-run swim while I got the rest of my miles.
Leaving Aquatic Park, we had our first San Francisco moment: a hill. Thankfully it was brief and we kept our pace slow and steady. I swear, San Francisco runners must be the strongest around. We cruised along Crissy Field and before we knew it, we were at Fort Point. There’s a bit of a climb up to the bridge. I think we may have taken a weird way but I LOVED running the stairs up and up. I’m a trail runner at heart.
Running over the bridge was awesome. Literally. I was in awe. The weather was absolutely perfect and I had my friend by my side. When we got to the Marin Vista Point, we stopped for a photo/water/stretch break. I realized I had forgotten my chews (NOOOOO!!!!!!!) and Velia gave me my first Gu. I’ve always been put off by the texture and I was right to be. It was absolutely fucking gross. Never again, thanks.
When I researched the route, it looked like it would be about 7-8 miles round trip from Aquatic Park. We were at nearly 6 at the halfway point! Great for me but not for Velia who hadn’t run further than 7 miles before. Our comfy pace was around 11:00 but I didn’t want to risk her getting injured. We agreed that she would stop if she felt any twinges or abnormal discomfort and wouldn’t go further than 10 miles. She was going to hit double digits today! AMAZING!
It felt awesome to go back down from the bridge. I had some serious runner’s high going at this point. “What goes up, must come down” is THE BEST RULE. Right around Crissy Field, I felt some non-emergent bathroom needs. Lucky for me, there was a big bathroom right there. I took the opportunity to, um, clear out and cool off before the final stretch. Velia was a champ and finished out her 10 miles. With a high five, I continued on toward the car where I would pick up my chews and refill my water.
I reached the car right around mile 11. Got a brief snack, a few swigs of water, a quick stretch and I was back on the road towards Fisherman’s Wharf and ultimately the Embarcadero. I also invited my buddies Britney, Usher, Katy, et all along for the last 4 miles. I felt truly amazing and powerful.
Running through the tourists at Pier 39 and Embarcadero was annoying. It was fun to experience that place in a new way but it’s not something I need to do again during the summer….on the weekend. The worst part, honestly, were the people toodling along on rented bicycles. What are they THINKING renting bikes to oblivious tourists in such a busy area?!
I felt awesome embarking on the last four miles. They were harder than I thought. I reached my turnaround, just shy of the Ferry Building, and was in the home stretch. PDR territory! Usually I feel great at the end of a run, especially with such a conservative pace. This time, I was definitely ready to stop running. I didn’t slow down but I didn’t have much pep. Just enough energy to keep trucking back home. And then……..I was done!
The moment I stopped running, my legs went from end of a run tired to “ohmygodthathurtsIcan’twalkOW.” That was a new experience for me. I waddled over towards the car and heard Velia behind me. She had just finished her swim and encouraged me to hobble into the cold water.
I lasted all of 2 minutes in the chilly water. Based on how great I feel today, it was probably a good investment. Even though I wasn’t super joyful in the moment.
Rest of the day involved foam rolling, deep dishing, some unexpected crankiness, several episodes of What Not to Wear, and finally BREAKING BAD!
Next up: Bear Creek Half Marathon with 3000 feet of gain! GUESS I’M A RUNNER NOW.