DATE: Sunday, February 17, 2019
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
RACE BEGAN: 08:00 am
FINISH TIME: 0:29:45
This is my first race report in two years. This was not intentional. In March 2017, I was supposed to run a half-marathon, which had been a postponement of a 2016 race. I guess it wasn't meant to be. In 2018, the day of the Firecracker run, I had my second child right on the morning of the race. Leading up to that, I was willing to participate if I had been able to, but alas, the Year of the Dog medal will allude me until she's 12.
I registered for this race late because I wasn't 100% sure I was going to attempt to make a comeback, but somehow I pulled the trigger. The kids would have normally come with us, but with an unusually cold (by Southern California standards... mid-30s) winter, we decided to drop them off instead. We grabbed our bibs, and I walked over to the start line just as things were starting, very casual. "The Ukrainian" did the 10k, so he waited while I ran, and after I was done, I collected post-race goodies and watched lion dancers. I decided long ago that the 10k on those hills was too much for me, especially now that even 5k is not easy.
I feel like this course changes every time I run it, although it's always hilly for the first 2+ miles. I also feel like it was less scenic than usual. And I was definitely more out-of-shape than usual. Since I had Baby #2, I ran a handful of miles in the summer and then only started gearing up for this race a few weeks ago. I'd run about 1.5 miles twice a week, then 2, and I did the full distance once and wanted to collapse. Luckily, I live in a hilly-ish area, so I was able to keep running during the entire race, though there were many bottlenecks where I was shuffling along. I probably could have avoided this by coming to the start line earlier and wiggling toward the front, but I was just glad to have made it out there instead of stressing out over stuff like that.
If you have been following for a while, this was my sixth Firecracker run, so I'm over halfway to my goal of collecting all 12 Firecracker Run medals. This race is always so great -- casual, and great shirts!
2019 - Pig
*2018 - Pending - Dog
2017 - Rooster
2016 - Monkey
2015 - Ram
2014 - Horse
2013 - Snake (we did the bike ride that year!)
2012 - Dragon
Running this really made me miss my pre-kid life. "The Ukrainian" and I don't spend a lot of time on things we enjoy anymore, so it was fun to get out and do something together. There are some talks of more to come this year, so stay tuned! Also, I guess this means I'm going to run a little more consistently. I've wasted a perfectly cold winter not running because I've been sleep deprived and unmotivated until the weeks leading up to this race.