Sunday, October 3, 2010

Camarillo Half-Marathon

EVENT: Camarillo Half-Marathon
DATE: Sunday, October 3, 2010
LOCATION: Camarillo, CA
RACE BEGAN: 08:00 am
FINISH TIME: 01:56:54

This was my 17th half-marathon, but only the second of 2010.... Like usual, I mailed in my registration for the Camarillo Half-Marathon and went through the trouble of printing and mailing the form to save myself some money. I've been doing that with most races lately, since these "online processing fees" of $5-$10 can really add up! Plus, I generally think think it's ABSURD, because "processing" a paper form includes data entry, while online data goes directly into the system.

This race was a gauge for my upcoming marathon, although my training has gone rather lackluster lately. But hey, the course was flat (see map below), and it landed on a week on my marathon training schedule that called for a 13-miler, anyway.

Prior to this weekend, I had never been to Camarillo, which is a good 70 miles from my home. I did know that it is the home of a Nike outlet, and I needed new workout clothes badly. I had been wearing basically the same workout gear for about four years, and they were starting to smell bad and not fit well.

Above: I was shocked to see the vastness of the outlets, and it took me some time to find Nike, so I felt pretty triumphant when I did like Maria Sharpova in this poster.

Above: I controlled myself and just got these. I mostly came for those shorts, anyway, since they had a much-needed zipper on the behind. The shirt is a dri-fit cotton shirt, which I'm curious to try (60% cotton, 40% polyester).

Interactive Course Map

This race was seemingly low-key, and registration was only $50 (cheap for nowadays!). On the day of the packet pickup, "The Ukrainian" had to teach a Professional Engineer (P.E) review course, so I was left to brave the stormy humid summer weather and head to Camarillo myself. That definitely made the outlet journey less fun, and frankly, I didn't shop much.

I got hungry but was (once again) saved by Souplantation that happened to be right across for the packet pickup area. Again, not fun (to eat there) by yourself. I didn't eat everything in this shot, but you get the idea.

I got there a bit early and realized that the folks needed lots of help, so I offered to help with thing such as cereal box opening/stacking...

Setting up the gear...

And even some of the packet pick-ups. It was nice to "grab" my own packet, too! Glad I didn't screw it up.

This is the race coordinator, Bill, leading the volunteers. He pretty much was running this marathon show from start to finish (no pun intended!).

I stayed long enough to help haul the t-shirts in. They turned out to be a lot nicer than I expected -- tech fabric and new running shirt for me! Here's an example one (with some college football in the back):

Above: Wiped out from my day (and "The Ukrainian," too, from teaching), we got a huge haul from Sharky's. If you've never been here, you should go! I love that they have lots of healthy swaps there such as naked burritos, wheat tortillas, tofu as a "meat" choice, and even organic veggies.

Above: We ate it indoor picnic style. I pretty much went into a coma after 2 tofu tacos and some bites of tostada salad, probably as a result of lunch.

The Race:

We were lucky race morning to have foggy/overcast weather. The day before had been in the low 80's and humid, and although the humidity didn't go away, I was still grateful. We went into the portapotties just in time to get to the finish line. I LOVED that they started right on time, a rarity in MOST races.

The course (see map above) was pretty much all flat, which is the only time I've done a "flat" race that was actually truly flat. It went around the fields of Camarillo -- I saw strawberries, some weird lettuce-ish plant, tomatoes, and I know I smelled bell peppers out there (ew). Of course, this also meant misty animal smell, but luckily, it was short-lived.

I finally really put my Garmin to full use and learned how to use the "auto-lap" function, so now I actually have splits!

1 - 8:32
2- 8:37
3 - 8:36
4 - 8:53 (not sure what happened here)
5 - 8:44 (small inclines, and I passed a lot of people here)
6 - 8:40 (stomachache, but one of my fav jams came on)
7 - 8:45
8 - 8:40
9 - 8:50 (the beginning of my deterioration, but I still passed a lot of people here)
10 - 9:04 (long stretch and in need of water)
11 - 8:58 (headed back to the starting area but still had to out-and-back... ugh)
12 - 9:11 (stopped for a few seconds at a water station because I was tired and unmotivated)
13 - 9:02 (feeling crappy)
.28 - 2:17 (thought I was finish but then had to sprint an additional .18 mile...)

I came in 12th in my age group (F20-29), so I won't complain. This time is very similar to my Surf City pace in which I PRed if you count the extra .18 mi I had to run. I think I might have had a shot of PR-ing, but in addition to my stupid slow training lately, the last three miles were run on unpleasant ground. Plus, I think that flat, long, and sometimes boring isn't exactly my ideal course. Still, I liked the farm-y views!

Above: Before... I'll add race pics to this entry if any were taken of me, but I didn't see any except one at the end.

Above: After. I had 1/3 banana, a few pieces of orange, and a few bites of pancakes that they were serving. =)

Above: I remembered to take a picture of the medal once we were tucked away in the car.

Overall, I won't complain about my performance. I should note that my CEP sleeves were helpful to me in the later miles for some reason. A guy stopped me and asked me what I thought about them.

Finally, I told Bill that he did a great job organizing this race. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who desires a low-key race in Ventura County.


  1. Do you know Penny at the Planet Yennp Running blog ? I think she ran it last year. You might want to try contacting her for some beta.

  2. I bet a well organized race makes for a much better experience. Congrats on that time. I think its impressive!

    I had to giggle at the misty animal scents though. I can so picture running through that area and being like "Oh! Gosh!!!"

  3. Awesome job :) 17 Half Mary's - wow. What an accomplishment!

  4. wow you've run so many races! very inspirational - congrats on adding another to the list!

  5. Good race overall!!! It was nice that the race fell on the same week of a 13 mile day. Your paces look pretty consistent over the whole race. Good to see you staying smooth through the whole racing, racing your own race and not the people beside you. Keep up the training, it will all help in the long run and goal that you have set!!!