Tales From the Back of the Pack

Tales From the Back of the Pack

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Creature of Habit

This morning's 12 mile run was the 1st taper, and 2nd to last run with the LA Road Runners. The LA Marathon is so close. 

Last night, I prepped as usual for the Saturday morning runs. I laid my clothes and fuel belt out and prepped my pre-run fuel (peanut butter & jelly sandwich) and my mid-run fuel (peanut butter & jelly sandwich) 

I've eaten peanut butter & jelly pre-run and mid-run almost every single week since our first week September 17. I'm SICK to death of peanut butter & jelly. I'm not sure if I can choke down PB&J for another 2 weeks until the marathon, but I also don't want to chance regretting a new food at mile 16 on March 15th. 

My Saturday morning alarm goes off at 5:30am and I drive out to Venice. The Road Runners meet at Westminster School in Venice where we park and meet up with our pace groups before walking over to the beach together. There's Advanced run groups, Run groups, Run/Walk groups and Walk groups. I'm in Run group 10. We're the slowest of the runners, 12:00/mi marathon pace.

LARoadRunners walking to the boardwalk to start our 12 miler

The best thing about running in a place like Venice Beach is that it;s never boring! On our way to the boardwalk we were serenaded by a couple of well-wishers. These two were pretty high energy for 7am, singing LMFAO's Sexy & I know It (Ah....I work out). They were hilarious, sincerely impressed by our commitment and got me pumped up for our run. 

The Venice boardwalk at sunrise. An unusually quiet scene
We run along the beach path for 2 miles to our first water station. There's an LARR guy on duty here who directs traffic (yes in LA there's even traffic on the beach paths) and shouts out to us COFFEE!! DONUTS!! Get ready for some coffee & donuts up ahead!! 

In all these months I have never stopped hoping that one day it would be true and that there would actually be a jelly filled glazed donut and hot chocolate at the water station. So far it hasn't happened but there's still one more week to go.
No coffee or donuts. Just water. Good enough! 
Running with the same group of people pretty much week after week, you kind of "fall into place" at a certain point. I can be a creature of habit and that has certainly been true of Run group. Besides running next to my buddy Gloria, I like to run right behind Socorro (the group formation is 2x2). Socorro points out the puddles, uneven sidewalk and any low hanging branches on our run. She has saved my life every single week and I wouldn't trust myself to run behind anyone else. 

Today's run was a 12 mile out and back. There were 3 water stations with Gu's, pretzels and cliff shot blocks. Heading back to the Venice boardwalk the scene is so different from the early morning hours. E'erbody is out enjoying the So Cal weather! 11.97 miles run today, 12:50 min pace. (We always go by the pace leader's watch and his watch said 12.25 miles.) 

Post run fuel is a bagel lox from a cafe we walk by on our way back to the parking lot at the elementary school (aka LARR base camp). I love this bagel. I always stash a $20 in my fuel belt for this bagel. Thinking about this bagel gets me through the last few miles of our run every.single.week. I might have to drive to Venice after the marathon to get my fix. Yep, creature of habit. 

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