Date: October 28, 2012
Location: L.A. Live
I ran this race last year and I apparently liked it enough to sign up again. I drove up to the convention center on Saturday morning to pick up my race packet. The LA Women's Show was also going on this weekend and I actually spent more time there than at the expo. It was an estrogen overload over there and based on the vendors in attendance, apparently LA women like chocolate, big fake jewelry, wine, hair styling, cosmetics and spa-ing. Did I cover everything? Anyhow, I saw Deidra Hall of Days of our Lives and Duane of Dog the Bounty Hunter but did not wanted to get in line for a photo. Celebrity stalking fail.
The race expo was organized but boring. The race shirt was pretty nice. My little sister was nice enough to model the shirt below. Not much came in the swag bag. I walked around the expo a bit but didn't buy anything.
The night before the race was our annual family Halloween party and this year we dressed up as characters from the video game genre. Fun times!
My youngest sister and I got up pretty early the next morning to make the drive to the LA Convention Center. We got to the parking structure before 6am but there was already a really long slow moving line to get in. I later find out why the parking lines were so congested that early in the morning. When I finally make my way to a parking spot, I parked and made my way into the convention center to look for the restrooms. As I entered the main hall of the convention center I see bright lights flashing and hear loud music playing and then I noticed that there was some sort of Hispanic/Latin concert going on and there were families there with little children and grandmas. Yeah, that's normal right, a family rock concert at 6am in the morning? Anyhow, the attendees of that concert were looking strangely at all the runners walking around dressed in Halloween costumes while we runners were wondering who the heck holds a concert that early in the morning. There you have it, the reason for the slow moving line into the parking structure as I had mentioned earlier. Moving on...
After grabbing a drink from the Starbucks inside the Convention center, I made my way back to my car to change into my costume and headed to my corral. Sister J and her future husband finds me shortly after I get there. They were dressed up in bride and groom costumes since they are getting married in a couple of weeks. Sister J and I were in the same corral so we stood around chatting a bit until the race started. I want to take a moment to mention that Skylar Laine sang one of the best versions of our national athem that I've ever heard. Shortly after that the wheelchair division was on their way and moments later they started releasing the corrals one-by-one a couple of minutes apart. As we neared the starting line, I told my sister to have a good race and we were off.
I wasn't sure what my goals were for this race even after I took my first step. I even sand-bagged my finish time a bit to my sister's surprise when she found me in her corral. Naturally I am always aiming for that PR but wasn't sure if I had it in me. I thought that I would formulate a goal based on how I felt in the first couple of miles. Turns out it was a good day for racing and I ran one of my fastest half marathon times. No PR but I also wasn't dying at the end so that was a good sign. I had a blast running that course because lots of people were dressed up in costumes and it was like one huge moving Halloween party. Plus, this was my 30th half marathon.
Putting my blue sparkle skirt to good use.
What's happening here? Obviously having too much fun running up an incline.
I found out later that Will Ferrell also ran the race. I really should pay more attention while I am running.
After I crossed the finish line, I went back to my car to changed into some dry clothes and headed back out to the festivities to look for my little sister. I've never stayed around after a race before so it was interesting to see what goes on in the aftermath. Apparently, lots of drinking, picture taking and rocking out. I ran into Emil near the gear check area and we chatted for a bit before parting ways. He ran a great race despite some minor setbacks.
So the reason why my little sister came with me to the race was because she was a volunteer. She did things like guard the corrals and worked at the gear check area. Woohoo for volunteers!