Saturday, October 13, 2012

Big Avocado 5k

On October 7th, last weekend, I finally dragged Mike to a 5k race. Ok, to be honest it wasn’t really dragging when he’s been asking to do a race with me for awhile now and we had planned this over a month ago. Last time Mike and I had raced together was back in May of 2011, the Gladiator Rock’n Run. That was a total blast and involved a lot more mud. This race was of the more local variety, with beachside views and local support.

Gladiator Rock'n Run in May 2011
 The Big Avocado 5k is held each year in Carpinteria along the bluffs, about a half hour drive from my home. It’s an interesting course, mostly trails and sand, weaving through a park overlooking the ocean. The views are magnificent and the morning was beautiful and clear.

Mike and I before the race
It was a small race with a decent sized turn out. We started out on the baseball field and followed the cones to the trails from there. Mike set us off at a quick pace, one I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to maintain, but he didn’t leave me too far behind. Thankfully we were able to follow the other runners, because the course was hard to figure out, but there were also a lot of volunteers about.

The course
Our first loop through the park, we came across a sleepy looking student volunteer. All proceeds from the race go towards scholarships for the local high school students, so a lot of the volunteers were students. We thanked him as we went by and he just kind of grunted. The second time we passed him, we thanked him again and he smiled and the third and last time we passed him, I gave him a high five which made him laugh.

The course was rolling, up and down, it felt more up than down. We kept a pretty consistent pace for about the first half and then started taking walking breaks during the second. Mike was feeling a little worn out, but I was itching to run. I wanted to do the race with him, so I encouraged him to do what he needed to do to keep going.

I know I always say this, but beautiful course!
With only a quarter of a mile to go, the finish line in sight and a runner just ahead of us, I started to speed up. To my shame, I left Mike behind, BUT he did encourage me to go. I ramped things up, passed another runner and finished the race. I then turned around to cheer both of them in.

Afterwards, there was lots of juice and goodies. We nibbled on a couple treats and hit the road. I was able to get Mike home in time to get cleaned up and get to church. What an epic morning!

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