Monday, November 5, 2012

Diablo Trail Race-after thoughts

Jacob and I ran with his dad in the Diablo Trail Race 10k yesterday. His mom was volunteering so signed us all up. I haven't been running. Not really at all. The only run I did was last week when I went out the door and ran on a north/south paved trail near our place. After the 50k trail run last June, I half-heartedly would go out a few days a week in the desert this summer, and could manage like 30 min before the heat would eat me. 

So yesterday was the first trail run I've been on in a while. 

It was hot out, and over 1,000 people turned up, clad in spandex and the lavish lululemon clothing line. On the trail to keep my mind off my lungs I kept track of how many women around me were wearing that logo. I estimate around 75% were. Not sure if it was a large enough sample size, but still. That's a lot of high-priced yoga/running gear. I guess I just don't get lululemon, nor the cult following. I was also really surprised to see such a large search and rescue team out there.  They wore really spiffy costumes. Reminded me of the TSA thug who stole my peanut butter. Something about the way they were just all standing around, waiting for something to happen and something to do. I don't know, didn't make me feel any safer.

Anyway, the route was pretty awesome, winding up near Diablo from the North side. The first two miles were a steady wide trail, followed by a narrow foot path where a single file line bottleneck forced you into going whatever pace as the person in front of you. I had heard that the record at the beginning of the race was 50 min for women, so I decided at the start line I was going to shoot for that. Which meant 8 min splits. I managed that in the first 2 miles, but that dropped the 3rd and 4th mile when the bottleneck happened, the route followed a steep incline up the mountain, and my lungs started hurting. I hadn't trained, so was sort of tired.

After traveling up and then down, the last 2plus miles were pretty much downhill. My splits in between were something like 12 and a half min miles, so I pretty much gave up on the making it in 50min, because that meant I would have to run like 4 and a half minute miles. Nope. I'm not that fast, nor am I that great of a runner. So I just decided to run and play, and look around, and try not to fall.

I had been off and on around a young woman in swishy warm-up pants (one of the 25% not in lulu attire), and was sort of trailing her because she set a good pace. The rhythm of the swish was also meditative. At one point I said, "great job!" and she just kind of huffed at me. I don't think she really wanted to chat. But I know how nice it is to get encouragement, so thought I'd try it. I thanked her later on for setting a nice pace. She still wasn't that excited to chat. Ah well.

J's mom, Rosalie was there at the end of the race, and that was nice. J and Dan didn't share my desire to attempt 50min time for the race, and so came in a bit after me. I finished in 1:05, felt good about it. And I guess it's pretty cool that all those people wanted to spend their sunday on a trail. I think 15 min is a lot to shave off over 6.2 miles, so I'm not sure if my goal of 50min is really that realistic. Maybe if I train? Who knows. I guess it's not really the point, and I'm actually going to start running again because it felt good.

Happy to report I haven't had to invest in any "running gear", aside  from a pair of Vibram five-fingers I bought in Seattle late last September which have continued to work through, I don't know, a lot of miles. They are only starting to tear on the cloth between the toes, but other than that, have turned out to be really reliable and worth the investment.

I still like running on trails, not in races, when it's just me and maybe another person, and you don't really worry about time or distance, and you just sort of go. But it's nice to do races to provide an impetus to start.


  1. heh, I know how you feel about lululemon clothes. That's how I felt about the brand & their customer base and kind of still do but having tried their clothes and the fact that I now own a few pieces, I can say that -some- of their clothes are worth their price tag. They make me look & feel good =) But because of their price tag, I consider them "investment" pieces and not something I would go out and buy every year. Their quality is good enough that I can see myself wearing them for the next few years and that's worth it to me. But on another note: yay for getting back out running! Sometimes I think about taking up running again. I think you should move out here and be my trail running buddy =)

    1. I second the trail running buddy prospect;)

  2. Hi !

    I don't know what lululemon clothes are but I guess they are yellow ;-) ... Great trail race Kit !

    Stéphane, The French Team

    1. yellow, salmon pink, blue and green and black and all colors-lululemon is a quintessential American thing, convincing people things will help them do the things they want to do...What are you doing now Stephane, or right, you two have a baby bump! wohoo!!! Hiking baby!