Race Recap: Brazen’s New Year’s Day 10K

If you know me and/or if you follow my blog, you know that I was very anti-holidays this year.  When New Year’s Eve finally arrived and we started gearing up to head to Sonoma with BFFs Andrea & Josh to go for our NYE wine tasting extravaganza- I had a mental breakdown.  And it wasn’t pretty. Imagine me, a grown woman, throwing my body on the ground, banging hands and feet wildly, holding my breath and screaming, “NO NO NO I DON’T WANNA!!!”

I exaggerate but yeah, I basically threw a tantrum.  Hubby said, “Uh… I think you should do us all a favor and stay home.”

That was all I needed to hear.  Called Andrea, explained myself and my exhaustion-fueled tantrum and she completely understood.  I sighed with relief.  Every fiber of my being wanted to rest so while they trekked to Sonoma, I basked in the glow of a quiet house and comfy couch.  That was The Best decision I made in 2011.

So, what the heck does all that have to do with a 10K race?

Well, opting out of my first favorite thing to do (partying) I decided to opt in for my second favorite thing to do (racing).  However, I had no car so even before registering, my first challenge was securing a ride out to Lake Chabot, which I did thanks to my friend and fellow blogger Kate.

Love this girl! Thanks again, Kate!

We arrived to Lake Chabot, I grabbed a cup of coffee, and we walked around, enjoying the scenery, hitting the porta potty and chatting with friends, all the while trying to stay warm. The race finally started and we were off…

Lake Chabot is very scenic this time of year and we in the Bay Area have been very lucky to avoid rain so far- the sky was a perfect baby blue, the wind was mild, the temps were cold but not freezing, perfect running weather.  Lake Chabot, however, is not flat and part-trail. Having run this course 3 times before at the 5K level, I knew this.  I knew the 10K was harder.  I knew about the trail.  I knew it was hilly.  Well, I thought I knew…

The beginning of the course is very undulating but run-able- up-down-up-down, no problem.  We have been working on hills at track so I was prepared and ran through the baby hills, no problem.  Then, at about mile 2 we crossed a very scenic bridge…

… and I took the chance to grab another self-portrait-while-running over it…

So happy to be starting the New Year right!

… and then there was no more running for about a mile and a half due to a 800 foot mother-of-a-hill climb that came next.  Eeeeek.

I could have just signed up for the 5K and avoided all this but nooooooo...

As you can see, no one was running that one.  It just kept going and going and going and hiking and huffing and puffing and then one of the photographers caught me walking:

So I took off and attempted to run again only to be greeted by more switchbacks to which I  asked, “SERIOUSLY???”  More hiking until the turn around and then we headed straight down hill.

Now, you would think that relief comes with the downhill but with trail hills this steep, I was too scared to run at full speed, fearing I would slip and fall flat on my ass so I kinda shuffled sideways down the steepest parts, leaning back and heel-striking the whole way.  Once we were off the trail and back on the paved path, my legs were so fatigued from that severe ascent that I found it very hard to get going again.  I looked at my watch, I was well over an hour already but I didn’t mind… just smiled to myself, looked at the full sun shining over the lake, and reminded myself how much I have to look forward to in 2012.

I finished the race in 1:13 which is the slowest 10K for me to date.  I totally blame the hills. Of course, I could have pushed it more but as a last-minute decision, I really didn’t mind… I had a great, challenging run, got to spend time with friends, and have a new medal to start my 2012 collection.

I just love, love, love a Brazen Race. The race organizers Sam & Jasmin, hold very affordable and incredibly well-organized races, mostly trail runs.  Every race comes with a goody bag, neat race bib, cool medal as well as custom race shirt (with the option of a tech tee for just an extra $5).  Support along the course is ample and the water stations are always stocked with different beverages, gummy bears, pretzels, and fruit.

The Brazen Racing Power Duo going over rules-of-the-trail: Jasmin (in the middle, in the yellow coat) and Sam (on the chair with the bull horn). Photo credit: Brazen Racing

They also provide coffee before the race starts (I must have pre-race coffee and this is one of 2 races I have participated in that have hot coffee while you wait!) and after the race, there is always a veritable feast.  This time, I had some red velvet cake, more coffee, and grabbed a Hagen Daaz ice cream bar for the road.

The Post-Race Spread (photo credit: my buddy Patty who did the *half* marathon that day! Crazy girl!)

Unfortunately, Brazen races are always on Saturdays which conflicts with my TNT schedule but whenever I get the chance, I will always opt to do a Brazen Race– and you should too!

I was very proud of myself for making the decision to stay in for New Year’s Eve this year and even happier that I pushed myself to get out the door, pin those numbers, and tackle “some” hills.  Just a great way to start the new year!

How did you start of the first day of this new year?  What are your physical goals for 2012?


12 thoughts on “Race Recap: Brazen’s New Year’s Day 10K

  1. What an awesome way to start 2012! Congrats! I wish I had done this race w/you (except the 5K – I’m not fond of steep hills either!) I love Brazen races too and really want to do some this year… Also, I’m really, really glad you decided not to do the Sonoma NYE — you NEEDED to listen to your body and mind and take a BREAK from the holiday madness. Good for you! 🙂

  2. I love the documentation. Looks like a lot of fun and hard earned rewards! Your passion for all you do is really inspirational.

  3. Ooowww…my quads still remember that hill from 2010, I think! Congrats to you for starting the year off right and congrats also to your doubly masochistic buddy who did the half! That’s just nuts. I’m struggling a bit with motivation in the new year, but hoping to get a little fire under my butt going before the Kaiser SF half!

    • Why thank you very much and thank you for understanding my need to stay home on NYE! (Yeah, Patty is crazy like that- she recently asked me if I wanted to join the ultra team, I laughed uncontrollably!)

  4. Pingback: Friday Favorites: Races | running4thereason

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