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I’m not the most articulate writer in the bunch, so bear with me as I try to put my thoughts on the Surf City Half in order.<br><br>
DH and I got into town at 11:30 for the KR meet up. We wandered around the expo tent for a while looking for a big guy with dread locks and a black beard. While being surveyed at the Crocs booth I spotted Voodoo and went running outside to meet and greet. We all stood around for a bit, chatting and waiting for the others. When everyone that was going to show, showed, we all wandered down to the beach for a group photo. Nettie and MG and Soli and Becca were just a crack up with all their different poses. My wonderful DH was given the job of group shot photographer and everyone handed him their cameras to take pictures. After that it was off to Wahoos for fish tacos.<br><br>
It was a gorgeous, typical So Cal day. Sunny and warm, tourists everywhere, street entertainers, and runners all over the place. I think we were all hoping that the weather man was, as usual, full of shit and we’d catch a break. Like Liam did, I woke early and looked outside – no rain. Maybe? Maybe? Nope.<br><br>
DH and I parked as close to the start as we could, which was about a mile away and then wandered around looking for the tent, which of course couldn’t be put up in those conditions. We finally bumped into MG in the expo tent and together we all waited. I went for one last potty stop, which included standing in the rain for a good ten minutes, and when I came back MG told me that the bulk of the group had decided not to run, and that she was going to join them. I thought about not running. It was cold, it was miserable, no one else was running. Then DH looked at me and said, “Honey, it’s only a couple of hours, you can do it”. So I took a deep breath, summoned all the stubbornness I could muster, and walked to the start line – where we waited. And waited some more. In the pouring rain.<br><br>
By the time I crossed the start line I was soaked through and I could feel my feet squishing in my shoes. Oh joy. This was going to be fun. But then once we started to run, I thought to myself, well this isn’t so bad. At least I’m not overheating. Then I started passing people, just picking them off one by one. It gave me confidence, but I also worried that I might get too enthusiastic at the beginning and then die at the end. I tried to slow myself down just a bit. I found a comfortable pace and just kind of stuck with it. The hill they talked about was more like a bump. I have hills where I run at home, so this wasn’t nearly as scary as I thought it might be. And once we got past it, I knew that everything was down hill or flat from there. It started to warm up a bit around that back stretch between mile four and five, mostly because we were sheltered a bit from the wind, and I was tempted to get rid of my long sleeve shirt, but then when we got back down to Pacific Coast Highway, the wind started to whip up, so I kept it on.<br><br>
Somewhere between mile 7 & 8 I made a potty stop. I jogged in place while waiting in line to try to keep warm. Once in the porta potty it dawned on me that I was wearing soaking wet running tights and shorts and that once I got them down, it was going to be hell getting them back up in a roughly 2’ x 2’ enclosure! I managed, but my tights weren’t really cooperating and I finally just did the best I could and got the heck out of there. Shortly after that I noticed that my left hip was starting to hurt. I told myself to just keep running and that it would work itself out. It didn’t. What I didn’t realize yet was that the small water bottle in my back left pocket and the cell phone in my front left pocket, combined with the weight of my soaking wet tights and shorts and my tights not being pulled up quite right were causing my shorts and tights to fall down, creating a weight pulling on my left hip. When I finally figured out what was wrong, somewhere around mile 10 it was pretty much too late. I threw away the water bottle and carried the cell phone in my hand and just kept going.<br><br>
About that time was when I started thinking about Anty, and his report from last year. I remembered so clearly how he had talked about the pain and his decision whether or not to keep going. Ultimately, his decision to keep going helped me to keep going. Every step I took it felt like my leg was going to detach from my hip. Compensating for the pain in the left hip caused my gate to be off, creating other problems. The slower pace was causing me to be more flat footed, which made my feet hurt. There were a couple of times that I winced out loud. I thought about walking, but I knew that it would just take me that much longer to get warm and dry, and it wouldn’t make it feel any better, so I forced myself to keep running. Although, by this point I would describe it more as a shuffle than a run. But it wasn’t a walk.<br><br>
My only goal for this race was to run the entire thing. I had budgeted myself one potty stop, and no walk breaks. As we got closer I knew that the full marathoners were on the same course. They had different mile marker signs than we did, and in the distance I could see one that looked like it said Mile 23, which meant that we had three more miles to go. I thought I’d gotten to my ten mile mark a while ago, so I was momentarily devastated! But then I got closer and realized it said mile 25! Suddenly my hip didn’t hurt quite so bad, and my feet felt lighter. Soon the crowds were lining the chute for the finish line and I took my outer shirt off and ran the remainder through to the finish. I’m pretty sure I was sobbing when I crossed the finish line, so the race photos should be just fabulous.<br><br>
I hobbled through the chip removal, to the medal station, and took the foil blanket offered by the race staff. Making my way to the beer garden, I called DH and asked him to meet me there –he’d been trying to stay dry in the expo tent while waiting for me. He came out and as we walked past where they were handing out the beer, he asked if I wanted to stand in line for my free beer – I just smiled and said, maybe for hot chocolate. The car was only a mile away, but it seemed so much further. My teeth chattered the entire way. Dry socks and shoes have never felt quite so good! Then it was off to In N Out for a Double, Double, Animal Style. I was kind of surprised at how many of the customers were wearing Surf City Medals, but then again, what better place to eat after a run than In N Out?<br><br>
All in all, it was a good day. I’m proud of my effort. I came in 1 minute and 15 seconds less than my estimated time to finish. One of the coolest things about the race was the blind lady running the half with her cane, all by herself - now that's determination. The few hardy spectators that came out to cheer us runners on were amazing. The kids that manned the water stations were phenomenal. I’ll do it again, but hopefully in better weather!
 

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Nice report!!!<br><br>
I never knew how much the mental game played into running until I hit that moment of decision in my first half. Way to get through it!!<br><br>
And I freaking love the mental image of you trying to fight with your tights in one of those nasty port-o-pottys, HAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH.<br><br>
Maybe one day, we can finish a full together!!!!<br><br>
And big props for not bagging it, can you believe those wusses?? <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif">
 

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Great job!<br><br>
Sorry I deserted you. I should have run it with you, but my heart wasnt in it after that miserable wait. <img alt="sad.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/sad.gif"><br><br>
It was great to meet you!
 

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Congrats on gutting out a great run! And big ups to the big guy (your DH) for convincing you to go for it! <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"> It was an absolute pleasure to meet both of you!
 

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Way to gut it out Chelle! It was rough out there. The wind was just whipping right off the ocean, PCH was getting flooded.
 

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Great job, Chelle!!! Way to hang in there!! You are one tough chica!
 

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Way to go Chelle - Good girl for braving it out and running the distance, not like some of those wimps <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> -<br><br>
As Anty says, I now have a mental image of you trying to pull those wet tights up in the port-a-potty, and I have to go to work with that thought <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Looking forward to catching up with you and your DH again when I'm next out west.<br><br>
Liam
 

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Nice! <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Amazing job running with the hip pain, too.<br><br>
It's also wonderful that you ran in conditions that put off the faint of heart! <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif">
 

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Fantastic job Chelle! Good husband you have there.<br><br><br><br>
It was pleasure meeting and chatting with you and your DH.
 

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<img alt="icon_cheers.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/icon_cheers.gif"> Yay to your DH!!!<br>
Even more "Yaying" to you for thinking cool and working your way through the tough moments. WTG on surpassing your goal. And BTW, that was a great RR, very rich in details. I felt I was right there with you...
 

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Great Run Chelle!<br><br>
And good for you in following DH's advice and getting out there and doing it.<br><br>
This last spring, as Diana and I were getting up and preparing to leave the motel to get to the Boston Starting line we were tempted not to leave. The rain was coming down sideways. We persisted, found a dry spot under a tent where we had some plastic to stand on to keep from sinking in the mud and waited for the start. Since we were in the second wave at Boston, we were very lucky that the storm had passed and we had a 4 hour window without rain! It was cold at the finish, but I know we would have hated ourselves if we had wimped out before the start!
 

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That was a great report. You've now got bragging rights in the PRT <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Even many time racers learn lessons .... next time you'll bring a trash bag to wear while waiting at the start <img alt="wink.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/wink.gif"><br><br>
Can you believe how nice it was here in CA (I'm north of you) this past week after such a crappy race morning? I ran in San Fran and it was the same thing. Two hours after the race the sun was out! Sometimes life isn't fair.<br><br>
Congrats to you and to your support crew <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif">
 

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For a first RR you done good <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br>
And ^5 to DH for not saying oh sweetie let's go eat pancakes instead.<br>
As for the wet tights in the porto- when you gotta go you gotta go but I can imagine how THAT felt. Not very comfy for sure <img alt="wink.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/wink.gif">
 

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Great Job, Chelle<br>
That run was a test of your courage and confidence.<br>
I'm giving you a 100.<br>
And don't sweat it. Your RR is also a winner.<br>
Congrats,<br>
jjj
 
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