Report: LA Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon

Event: Los Angeles Rock n’ Roll 1/2 Marathon
Date: October 24, 2010

ya, I know a bit late again.

I was fortunate to participate in this event as an GU Ambassador Athlete, thru my business PedPowerPerform Lab. I have been anticipating this race. My third stand alone running event and only half marathon for the year. It was also a good event to check status of foot issues.

I was also using this event to evaluate my pair of Saucony Progrid Getgo. Since I wanted to wear my Saucony compression socks for their muscle support, no orthotics. My orthotics make the toe box bit small when I wear socks. I would be giving up some support but I will be wearing an arch stap for arch an plantar support.

I was hoping there would be race morning check in, but no go. Mandatory check in on Sat until 5 pm. So after completing some work in the am it was off to LaLa Land. Made it to the expo, LA Convention Center, 45 minutes before shut down. The space was kind of overkill for the size and amount of exhibiters. I would say the Rock n’ Roll souvenir area was just as big as the vender space. That kind of tells you about the organization… get money any way you can.

Since I was wearing my Tri Club of San Diego shirt and hat I was able to make some direct contact with a couple of the vendors, Bazi Energy Shot and PR Bar. They offered me some extra samples for me to distribute back in SD with fellow club members and work out partners. I of course stopped by the GU booth to say hello. GU gel was the official on course energy. Made a few stops by the Miller MGD 64 booth for a few shots “water”. Picked up a great deal on SoftSole socks, 6 pairs for 10 bucks, think the packaging was old!

After the expo it was back to the car to unload and relax a little bit. I have a “secret” parking area which is free and dam close. On a budget for dinner, I went out looking for a Subway for my five dollar meal. I did quite a bit of walking since I did not know where the nearest location was. The Convention area has changed quite a bit since my last visit, new condo conversion, the completion of the LA Live/Nokia Center. Getting to sleep was a bit tough, that Bazi Energy Shot was really working.

Race morning up a bit early. Its a point to point race, bus ride up to Griffith Park for the start. Getting there the bus drive did a five mile u-turn to get on tho the freeway. Fortunately, race morning was not too cold, but I brought and used one of those metallic blankets to stay warm. Starting corrals were assigned according to pace, the start had a pretty relaxed vibe and I took my assigned corral, one, 15 minutes before the gun.

I was pretty anxious with this race, wanted to have great race, set a pr in the half since moving back to Southern Cal five years ago. I had a couple weeks of rest since my last event and only did a couple of recovery runs… just to make sure my foot was all right. I was planning to average 6:21 to 6:27 pace to keep my goal time of around 1:24. I was only able to hold that pace for about five miles. The course was pretty flat and a negative elevation at the finish. The send half of the course we encountered some ups, on and off ramps, and gradual inclines, with the last mile and a half a nice decline. The course was not that crowed, despite the congested starting/staging corrals, narrow two lane park lane road. Starting in corral one kinda helped with that situation. The actual course was quite wide. I keeping on eye on heart rate and pace pretty much the hole time and instantly knew my goal finish time was in jeopardy. Garmin details.  A couple of steep inclines I was not expecting and the long gradual incline from mole 8 to 10. Those miles added up extra seconds I was not able to make up. My legs felt pretty solid but my stride was a little off, still being a little tentative with my foot issues. That is why I chose the Getgo, a bit more support and a tratitional running shoe compared to the Kinvaras.

Was the course memorable? No. The only scenic part was near the finish when we actually got into the city, otherwise it was on the generic roads close to the freeway, not many spectators. I’d give it a three guitars out of ten. How about the rock n’ roll factor? Well, I only remember one band, the Chinese drummers, being in the “lead” group it seamed as though many of the bands were not set by the time we passed. Ya, this was year one for the Rock n’ Roll LA. Less than 9700 participants, I was a little disappointing on the caliber of participants…. It was more of a “pedestrian” event. With my “slow” finish time I managed a top 10 in the age group, and I was running at only at 85-90%. The course also ended up being long, a major disappointment when participants are attempting a personal record. Will I be coming back to this event? No, there are just too many other better events. Am I glad I participated? Of course, YES. Whenever I am able to get out an race, life is good! There were a couple of spot along the course where I was able to coach, inspire and encourage others to stay strong and focused… assisting them in having a great race.

With this race, I discovered I need the next size large shoe if I wish to wear socks and especially if I wish to use my orthotics. I have since ordered the proper size. I wish to thank again Gu Energy Lab for assisting  with my race entry and fueling my muscles (GU every three to four miles)

Finish: 1:27:42 (6:35 pace), 9th in AG out of 378 and 97 OV out of 9,641


The next day I did a 100 miler bike ride, a long 8 hour day – actual ride time was 7 hrs. Garmin info


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