Saturday, March 21, 2009

Pirates Cove 30k - the journey......


Sometimes it's about the destination. This time it was most definitely about the journey. If you just want to see photos, you can find those in the post below this one.

I was looking forward to this run today for many reasons. One: I had never been to this area before. Two: the views looked spectacular. Three: I wanted to see a couple of my friends. Four: I'm volunteering at Miwok 100 in May and I was curious where I'd be and also what the runners would be running on.

Someone on the PCTR message boards said they needed a ride, so this morning I drove over to Menlo Park and picked up a guy named Vladimir and drove him to the race. We got there an hour before the start of the race. This gave me plenty of time to eat my mini bagels with almond butter and finish my coffee. When I got out of my car to go pee, OMG, the wind was screaming and it was pretty damn chilly. The forecast called for rain starting at around 3:00 p.m. in the north. I brought three different cover ups and knew I would choose one based on how it was there on the coast. I decided to wear my waterproof/breathable jacket. I knew it would work as a windbreaker and if the rain came early, it would keep me dry. My Marmot cap is also waterproof. I saw Victoria and Rick at the check-in. Victoria thought I was insane with all the items I had on to keep me warm (i.e. fleece gloves, ear muffs, tights, jacket). We'll see what she has to say later about that. She went out with a short sleeved shirt on and arm warmers. That was it! Well, she had something on her legs of course. LOL

The 30k & 50k started at 8:30. The 20k started at 8:45, and the 10k at 9:00. The first climb was a good one. I didn't hear until we were at the start, that there were steps on this course. Steps add a whole new element when doing this kind of event. It's kind of something you have to practice. And, I don't think the stairs at my work justify "practice." At about 1.5 miles (30 minutes for me) the damn 20k people started running by me. I couldn't believe it. They kept coming. And I kept stepping out of their way. By mile 3, I about had enough of this and I was just going to follow these fast 20k-ers right back to the start/finish. Right before the point where I could bail out of the 30k, Lisa appeared out of nowhere. We made small talk about what distance we were doing, how we felt, etc. She said it would be nice if we could run together. Wha??? Oh man! I couldn't abandon her. She went into the restroom and I stopped at the aid station. I told her I was going to head up the hill, she could catch up (no duh!). When I first saw her, she was carrying a rolled up denim jacket -- I thought she was just a hiker. Anyway, a few minutes after I left the aid station, Lisa caught up with me. As I let her in front of me on a single track, I noticed she was wearing Nike walking shoes. She was carrying a bottle of Arrowhead water in one hand and her car keys in the other hand. She had shoved her denim jacket in her waist pack.

For the next 10 miles, Lisa and I pushed and pulled each other up and down the trails of the Marin Headlands. She insisted we were going to finish together. God bless this woman. Lisa is from Bulgaria, 30 years old. She talked her little head off, telling me about recent books she's read or movies she's seen. We talked about our jobs and relationships and childhoods. I must say her childhood was more interesting than mine. It only took me about 1 miles to become so grateful she opened her mouth back there before the aid station. We hung on to each other until about mile 14, long enough to see the first 50k runners come flying by us. She could no longer run any flat or downhill portions because her legs hurt so much. She told me to please go ahead. So I did. The rain really started to come down at this point (it was nowhere near 3:00 p.m., by the way) and it was getting much colder.

I finished my 18.6 miles with 3,740 elevation gain in 4:48, I think. I was walking at that point and really didn't care about time. Both of my legs were on fire and my right ankle is still quite tender from twisting it a month ago. The loose rocks on the trails reminded me of the ankle. It was pouring now. I stood under the PCTR tent and waited for Lisa to come in. She came in 30 minutes later and she was drenched! She did have her denim jacket back on though. She had a cup of soup and I drove her to her car parked 3/4 mile away. She said she didn't even want to walk one more inch. This was the longest distance she has ever signed up for. We exchanged email addresses and plan on running together on her side of the bay.

Rick (365me) made his goal, shaving time off his 50k time from last year. Victoria (flirty 'n dirty) wasn't finished with her 50k before I left. I felt so bad for her being out there in that rain and cold, without a waterproof top of any kind. I hope she has a good report later. Both Rick and Victoria always have good race reports. If you get a chance, read their blogs. ;)

So, now I have yet another reason to look forward to my next organized trail run: I might meet another "Lisa".



Until later.............

13 comments:

Rick Gaston said...

Oh you gave Vladimir a ride. He's a cool guy, mighty nice of you. Saw your friend Lisa and she was really nice too. She said "good job" and gave me a big smile. It was awesome meeting up with you guys at registration, double hugs and everything. Love these PCTR races. Glad you had a great time and enjoyed the views. Welcome to my training grounds.

RBR said...

Great race report and I LOVE the pictures! SO cool that you got to both support and be supported by a new buddy. Dude, what a beast she is for going 18.6 miles in a denim jacket and a bottle of arrowhead! I ma always jealous of the inherently fit.

I should have just gone ahead and done this race, my measly 6 miler this afternoon was BORRRR-ing and my 90 mile Mt. Hamilton ride tomorrow, while currently still on has been shortened due to weather concerns and is in jeopardy of being canceled if it rains to hard. Something about slipping off the road. Cycling is stupid. I should have just stuck to running.

AKA Alice said...

I've probably said this before, but I am just in awe of you trail runners. I don't know how you do it. I am in constant fear of twisting an ankle when I run on pavement. I can't even imagine running a trail in the rain...

So run on! You are a ROCK STAR.

I love it when I make a running friend on the road.

Stephanie said...

Sounds like you beat a tough race and made a cool new friend. I just can't believe she wore a jean jacket!

Victoria said...

So glad you enjoyed the trails! I was fine-- I only got cold at the top of Marincello the 2nd time, and by then it was probably good incentive to run more (which I needed at that point!).

I'm taking you to run more in Marin-- and no worries-- we'll run TOGETHER.

Great job out there-- those are some tough trails!

Southbay Girl said...

You are an amazing woman! You report has made me feel a little bit better about the 18K this sunday!

One day I'll make it up north for a PCTR event so we can run together!!!! You are a rockstar!

Jodie said...

Wow! I'm so jealous of all the places you get to run/hike/walk. And how great of you to give another runner a ride. That's just awesome.

Glad you had Lisa to join you in the journey, sounds like you both had a great morning.

Missy said...

That sooo rocks out. I really need to try the trail thing because you guys have wayyy better aid stations - cookies, gummy bears, c'mon, that rules.

Nice work out there, so beautiful.

willgotthardt said...

Good to see you out there again Jo Lynn, and thanks for clearing the trail up ahead.

Well done.

Cheers, Will G.

aron said...

awesome job!!!! sounds like a really tough race but you did great. love the pics too!

Marcy said...

Wow chica!! You know for some rainy weather you sure do look happy :-)

AWESOME JOB!! And great pics :-)

wcaitlin said...

Congratulations on your 30k! I recall you and Rick after the race, next time I'll chat more. Hope you're recouping well and taking good care of those ankles!

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

You have suck lovely places to run/hike/walk/etc. :-)