Runners are weird. I mean, all we do is run. How hard is that? Damn hard…sometimes. Today was one of times that running was not hard though I had kind of psyched myself out that it would be hard. That’s another reason runners, and I’d venture to guess many athletes are weird; we have rituals. There are certain things we convince ourselves we must do in order to have a good run. You may be thinking something like carbo load before the race, well, that’s B.S. (for me at least), or hydrate (that’s true) but I’m thinking more like, “OMG, how am I going to have my usual before run bowl of cereal with plain yogurt before the start?! Should I bring the yogurt from home in a cooler? Will the hotel have a fridge? AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!” Minor example of ritual that is silly and I solved by bringing a couple of Cliff Bars instead.
I also psyched myself out because I thought about my performance at this same event last year, where I walked up a couple of the hills, something I never do, fell on the Golden Gate bridge, and used the turn around point as a temporary rest stop…it was all bad. It was all much ado about nothing. This year was awesome. Beautiful weather despite the forecast of clouds, I conquered all the hills, didn’t fall AND finished 3 minutes faster than last year! Which brings me to another point.
I had met some friends in the City the day before to hang out and go to dinner; those friends invited a few more to join us. Standing in line at San Tung (really long wait but GREAT Chinese food, especially the chicken wings (I know one does not usually think “lets go to the Chinese restaurant for chicken wings, but trust me they’re awesome) one of my friends friends asks, “What’s with all the 13.1 stickers on peoples cars? I don’t get why people have them.”
“Well, tomorrow is the SF marathon, which also has two half marathons, 13.1 is half a marathon.” I reply.
“Ah, then that explains the 26.2 stickers too…still don’t get why anyone would want to put that on their car!” chuckles the acquaintance.
“Well, dick, *ahem* I mean sir, probably because running those distances is damn hard, especially in a hilly place like this which requires some training and I think those people, including myself, are proud of the personal accomplishment finishing a race.” Is what I wanted to say, but I didn’t want to sour the conversation.
“It’s about camaraderie.” Is what I actually said.
One more random thing from this event experience:
Waiting in line for the shuttle back to the hotel from the event Expo where you pick up your bib and pay too much for race related stuff one of the vendors announces over the P.A., “Ladies we have tampons and chocolate….
“…wait, did she just say………” begins the woman behind me.
“…let me repeat that…tampons AND chocolate.”
“Oh my God, I can’t believe that was over the speakers!” She obviously was not from San Francisco, and possibly not from California.
“…chocolate, chocolate, chocolate….”
Lastly, whenever I go to the City I take random photos. Here is what I came away with this time: