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Pasadena Half Marathon Inaugural Redux

March 22, 2009

Half Marathon

Runner Details Race Results Split Times
Bib: 5430
Name: Andrea Torng
Gender: F
Age: 22
Hometown: Playa Del Rey, CA
Overall: 229 out of 2865
Women: 44 out of 1600
F 20-24: 4 out of 77
Age/Grade: 62.05% Place: 224
Finish: 1:46:07 Pace: 8:06
Tag Time: 1:46:07
Gun Time: 1:46:14
10 Km: 49:06 Pace: 7:55

First of all,




Precip: 60%

Rain showers along with windy conditions. High 62F. Winds W at 20 to 30 mph. Chance of rain 60%. Winds could occasionally gust over 40 mph.I usually don’t trust the weather channel too much because more often than not they’re wrong (and I also refuse to believe bad news). We’ve been getting great weather lately with no rain whatsoever, so why now? But I truly believe the Pasadena Marathon is a little cursed, it was supposed to be last November but they had to cancel it because of all the fires. Today, it was outright downpour rain. You would think if the rain came during the fires at least it would put them out. I actually had high hopes it wouldn’t rain and was even considering not bringing my hat since the sun probably wouldn’t be out by the time I finished. Last minute, I decided to bring it just “in case”. Boy, that was probably the best decision I’ve made to date. Around 6am, it started sprinkling a little bit but wasn’t bothersome. I found the Leggers tent and met up with my friend Kevin who I wanted to try to pace. 15 minutes before the start, it started pouring. Everyone was huddled under the small tent trying to stay dry, although there was really no point in delaying the fact that sooner or later we would all be soaked. I wished then I had brought even a trashbag to throw over myself instead of standing out in the pouring rain with shorts and a thin top. Everyone looked pretty miserable at the starting line, I felt really bad for people who didn’t have a hat or visor to shield their eyes from the rain. It was pouring so hard I had to flip my Garmin underneath my wrist so it wouldn’t get as wet. Although it’s supposed to be waterproof, the watch has been freezing on me lately and just this morning I had to reset it again for the ***th time. I also made sure my ipod was tucked away in my shorts, talk about being electrocuted by all the electronic devices I had on me. The guy on the speaker phone kept telling everyone that this race definitely wasn’t for wussies, but frankly, at that moment I just wanted to start already and get moving. There’s nothing worse than standing still with no protection while the rain is beating down on you and drenching your entire body from head to toe. Yes, my shoes and socks were soaked before I even crossed the starting line. It was a fabulous way to start the 13.1 mile race.

The race finally started with the usual bottle necking, I was actually kind of scared running in the rain because of the slippery roads and visibility wasn’t great (well, I half blame that on my eyes too). Miles 1-3 was running with the rain/wind blowing right at us, it was hard to push through and gain speed when it felt like the wind was pushing you back. The only upside of running in the rain is if you are ever thirsty, you can just open your mouth instead of waiting for the next water station, and yes, I am not ashamed of doing this although I must have looked like an idiot with my mouth wide open trying to drink the rain. Fortunately, the rain actually stopped after that or at least lightened up all the way until the end. I was feeling pretty good the first couple of miles, but started getting pains in my shins due to starting off too fast. After looking at my mile splits, I was averaging a 7:30 pace which is way too fast to be starting off and should have slowed down to 8:30. Thank goodness for the volunteers who still came out and helped with the water stations, I definitely needed the extra boost from the sugary drink to get me going again. The course was pretty hilly, despite what I’ve heard. Mentally, I don’t think I was as prepared for this race as I was for City of Angels Half. It felt like the entire course was going at an incline, but unlike City of Angels, there were downhills that came with the hills. I tried to make up for lost time during the uphill by flying downhill. We passed through nice neighborhoods and rounded our way up to the top of the hill where I was stunned by the scenery of Pasadena. At that time, I wanted to stop and just capture the moment underneath the Colorado bridges, it was truly breathtaking. However, there is no rest for the weary and I made a mental note to visit this place again.

Colorado Bridge

Colorado Bridge

Since the half and the full started at the same time and followed the same course, I was afraid with the rain and wind, I might miss the half turn-around sign and run with the full marathoners. Thankfully, my vision hadn’t failed me yet and I saw the sign that separated the two groups. Yeah, I would be pissed if I was running the full today in these conditions. Mile 9-10 was a pretty long incline coming out of the Rose Bowl, I even saw some bikers getting off their bikes and walking their bike up the hill. This was a definite “BEWARE: HILL AHEAD” warning for me as I stayed low to the ground and looked at my feet until the hill was over and my legs let up. I try not to look at my Garmin too much because it usually stresses me out more by trying to calculate my pace and estimated finish time. I told myself I would look at it when I crossed the 11 mile mark. Either Mile 10 was tortuously long, or I missed the mile 11 marker, OR there was no 11 mile marker (the latter) but next thing I knew, I was already at Mile 12. I started to pick up my pace and right when I was about to speed through an intersection (oh yeah, I don’t know who’s genius idea it was to have the roads open to cars and buses during the race, but they had police signaling when cars could pass through, which seemed impossible because runners were streaming through the intersection every second) the police decides to let a BUS pass right in front of me! I had to immediately slow down so I wouldn’t be roadkill and threw up both arms like “WHAT THE HELL!?” to the police.  I started sprinting again and the finish line was in sight. 13.1 rainy miles and I was finally done! It felt so good to cross the finish line and run back into the Leggers tent because it started pouring again! Talk about good timing. They were giving out Nesquick chocolate milk which is actually a great recovery drink and I grabbed one knowing it could be put to good use when bribing Brennan (heh). There weren’t that many spectators, but I don’t blame them. I probably wouldn’t haul my butt out in the pouring rain to cheer for others either. I found this neat feature on my watch called “auto lap” where I can calculate my speed at every mile of the race. I can’t believe at one point I was running under 6 minute miles! Official results are pending…Here is the link to my Garmin stats:

Summary 01:47:08 13.23 2,779 2,779 08:05 05:49
1 00:07:27 1.00 200 132 07:27 06:28
2 00:07:37 1.00 251 298 07:37 06:49
3 00:08:00 1.00 136 166 08:00 06:24
4 00:08:30 1.00 273 240 08:30 07:12
5 00:08:02 1.00 308 295 08:02 06:46
6 00:07:53 1.00 232 263 07:53 06:23
7 00:08:01 1.00 166 230 08:01 06:27
8 00:08:11 1.00 287 270 08:11 05:58
9 00:08:28 1.00 161 95 08:28 07:17
10 00:09:02 1.00 259 159 09:02 07:18
11 00:08:14 1.00 167 178 08:14 07:19
12 00:07:58 1.00 169 205 07:58 05:59
13 00:07:23 1.00 109 156 07:23 06:25
14 00:02:15 0.23 63 91 09:42 05:49
2 Comments leave one →
  1. Jose permalink
    March 24, 2009 2:42 pm

    Hey Andee, Congrats. That’s a very good pace for running on the rain and the Hills. I bet you will do very good at the LA Marathon.

    This is a quote that inspired me at the Pasadena Marathon, and I like to share it with you

    Pain is Temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it last forever
    Lance Armstrong

    • andeetorng permalink
      March 24, 2009 3:09 pm

      Thanks Jose! You did great too! You shaved off so much time from the last race. That’s funny about the quote because I read a quote like that “Pain is temporary, but quitting is forever” and it has stuck to me since. We will power through the LA together

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