Wednesday, August 22, 2012
So... I took a nap under a pine tree, instead of climbing the cables of Half Dome. Why did I skip the last 400 feet of the hike to the summit? I am deathly afraid of heights. The pictures you see on the internet make the hike look less steep that it truely is. This is a class 6 climb without cables. Many people get stuck due the the fear that flows through your body when looking out from the top. I did not want to be one of those people. And naps are good.
We reached the top of Nevada Falls around 10:00 a.m. Nevada Falls is the second waterfall on the Mist trail, appx. 2 miles up from Emerald Pool. The path consists of steep stairs, and took us almost 2 hours to climb. Nevada Falls is a great place to eat lunch and fill your water bottles. Do not forget to filter your water. There is bacteria (and virus) in the waters.
My sister-in-law, Andrea and I hiked from th valley floor to the summit of Half Dome in one day. Yep, that is 16+ miles hiking up a mountain, from 4000 feet at the valley floor, to the peak at 8800 feet. And it was an adventure.... Half Dome Half Dome is a granite rock fomrmation, located in Yosemite Valley, California. It rises over 8,800 feet above sea leval. Its distinctive flat face was created by glacial movement, creating a steep, slick hump rising out of the valley floor. It is a California icon, revered and memorialized by many artists, historians, and mountaineers. The photographer Ansel Adams created stark black and white studies of this formation. Royal Robbins summited this peak in the 1950's. North Face uses Half Dome as its company logo. In 2005 the Federal government memorialized Half Dome on the back of the quarter.
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
On July 29, 2012, I ran my first 26.2, at the San Francisco Wipro Marathon. My finishing time was 5:19, appx. a 12:10 pace. Not great, slow, but I ran without any problems and enjoyed the day in full. The day started at 3:30 a.m. with coffee and clothes. At 4:30 a.m. my brother, who was running the half, came and drove both me and Andrea, my sister-in-law, to the start. His intention was to run just 5K and to win a bet that he would show (since the year before he forgot to pick up his bib.) Our wave started at 6:30, so we had to stand around for an hour, wrapped in a snuggy I brought. At the gun Andrea sprinted ahead and Carl paced me at 11:00 a mile for the first 4 miles. At the 4 mile mark he dropped out to catch the bus and cook a post-run feast. My 1/2 marathon split time was exactly 2:30 - not bad. At mile ten my brother Joe left me a care package by the side of the road, with beers and chips. I chugged a beer - a perfect carb for a run. In Golden Gate Park, my mom, sister-in-law Adriana, and brother John had a cheering committee and care package; I at Snickers and Coke with my salt pills. GGP is the worst part of the route because it gets repetative with a few loops. I much prefer the city routes. Husband Hugh meet me at mile 20 with a sign and another Coke, the perfect pick me up for the final leg. At that point the whole race was just a fun run, and pretty uneventful and pretty standard. Since San Fran is part of my regular running and training route, (and I have done many fun runs in the City) this marathon physically felt just like a regular long weekend run. My body did not recognise that this was a special event. The only time I started feeling differently was mile 24 and 25 where I started to get angry. I have read many magazines and a few books on training for a marathon, and I do not recall reading about anger. Hitting the wall, fear, excitement, being overwhelmed - all of these things are mentioned in books. But not anger. I was angry at all the walkers and folks giving up. I had a massive urge to start pep talking people to get going and finish strong. Of coarse I kept my mouth shut. The last thing a stranger at mile 24 of a marathon needs is some stranger yelling at them to start running. I never stopped runnning for those last 2 miles, and in fact, I ran after hitting the finish line until I got my metal. Then I sat down. I didn't want any food, just water and another beer. It felt good to sit. I was very happy to sit. But I felt great. No muscle pains. I did get one big blister on the right foot, but that's normal. The next race I will need to train a little differently. I will need to monitor my nutrition a little more carefully - I gained weight training for this marathon. Too many carbs. Too much pie. And I need to add strength training for the lumbar spine. That is the only sore spot - lower back. And I need a better psychology for race day. Placing myself in the last wave with the slow folks (which I am one of) brought my spirit down and made me angry. I need to be in a wave with upbeat hyper folks who shout and scream and cheer, even at the end! Yep - I have 2 more half marathons on calendar in September, and plan on signing up for my second full.