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iCureMelanoma 5k - Run

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Fullerton, CA, California
United States
68F / 20C
Total Time = 54m 57s
Overall Rank = 393/624
Age Group = 35 - 39 Female
Age Group Rank = 27/41
Pre-race routine:

I left work early on Friday to head out to Fullerton for packet pick up. It was at Full Spectrum Dermatology, which I was surprised to learn was right by St. Jude, the hospital I was born at.  I got my shirt and goody bag, bought raffle tickets, and then went into the dermatologist’s office to get the free skin cancer check that came with race registration. I had actually almost not gone because I was so scared of getting checked, but logic prevailed, and I realized that I need to start getting checks done, since I am in a high risk category for melanoma.

I waited for a few minutes and filled out paperwork. They had goodies supplied by Panera Bread, but I was too nervous to eat. When I finally went in they told me to dress down to my comfort level, but didn’t have a gown for me to wear or anything. So, I had to stand there, awkwardly clad in very little, and wait. A dermatology student came in first and did an initial exam, and then the doctor came in to follow up. Everything checked out, which was a huge relief! Any moles I have are just regular old boring, garden-variety, run of the mill moles. Pfew!!!

I went and grabbed some food then took the kids to swim practice. That evening I packed for the race after our usual “Pizza and TV” Friday night. It wasn’t an A race or a tri, so I wasn’t super careful about what I put into my stomach that night.

I was up at 5:15, which for a race morning isn’t too bad. I got ready, had my usual pre-race breakfast, and watched part of a DVRed episode of America’s Next Top Model. I got to say goodbye to my husband and son, before I headed out the door.

I got to Fullerton pretty quickly, and the pre-race festivities were in full gear! I had done this race in its inaugural year, five years ago, but haven’t been able to do it since. Then it was a local 5k, with maybe a few runners doing so to raise money for melanoma research. This year it was all different…in a good way! There were teams, as large as 83 people, who had matching shirts, pictures and signs honoring their loved ones who have died from melanoma. It was amazing to see. My dad died of stage IV melanoma in 1995. This is the only event, that I know of, that raises money for melanoma research. It was really great to be in a place with so many people whose lives have been affected by melanoma. It made for an emotional, but awesome, morning.

I walked around to check everything out and recognized a few faces on one team from work. As I was trying to think of someone’s name I heard someone yell mine. It was Lynn, a friend that I used to work with who now lives in Ohio. I was surprised to see her. She was in town just for this event. Her best friend’s dad had died of melanoma last year. The race was dedicated to him. Also, his wife works in the student store at the school that I teach at, which is why I saw several familiar faces. Lynn and I talked for a while before it was time to warm up.

Event warmup:

There was a group warm up, that I didn’t feel like doing, so I walked over to the playground to stretch my calves. During this time, one of the daughters of the man who the race was dedicated to, got up on stage and told us about her dad’s battle. It was a very touching story and there were a lot of us that could really relate to what this family was going through.

I had meant to do at least some running to warm up, but it was now race time, so I hit the restrooms and took my place at the back of the group waiting behind the start line.
  • 54m 57s
  • 3.11 miles
  • 17m 40s  min/mile

When the air horn went off, we started walking. I had gotten bad plantar fasciitis toward the end of 2010. I didn’t run at all during 2011 and had to go to PT for several months as well. I finally got back into running a little in February of 2012. So, leading up to this race, I had only begun running again and had not yet run more than a mile straight. Since this race was billed as a run/walk, I figured I’d run what I could and walk the rest. It turned out that many of the people were there to walk, so it was no big deal.

I hadn’t warmed up, so I decided that I would walk the first 10 minutes, as a warm up, and then decide what to do from there. We walked around the field at Laguna Elementary school. The course then took us around the front of the school, down the street, and onto a trail that is used for horseback riding and mountain biking. It is a nice wide course that isn’t too bumpy.

At the 10 minute point I decided to start jogging and my foot felt good, so I went with it. I waited for a mile marker and a water station, but there wasn’t one. This was disappointing. As I was getting to the end of the trail and about to cross the road to the lake, I asked two volunteers who assured me that there was a water station up ahead. Good think, because I was getting thirsty.

The course now went all around a little manmade lake in the area. It’s scenic except for the eerie blue/green color that they’ve obviously dyed it. I couldn’t resist pulling out my phone and getting a few pictures, including one of a baby duck. Yep…I stopped running to take a picture of an animal. That’s just how I roll.

At the far end of the lake was the first, and only, aid station. It was already 1.5 miles into the race, but at least they were giving out full bottles of water. I drank most of it and enjoyed the run back along the other side of the lake.

I ended up back on the trail and after 30 minutes of running, decided I’d better downshift back to walking. Although my injured foot felt fine, the other ankle was starting to hurt. I walked for a while, and then jogged again, then back to walking. Soon, we were back on the road, heading toward the finish line, which I decided to run in for. My time wasn’t bad, considering I walked a third of it. Better than I thought it would be, anyway.

What would you do differently?:

One thing I could have done differently was to train more in the weeks leading up to it. Although I’d gotten back into running, I was only running once, maybe twice a week and should have been training more. Also, I probably ran more than I should have. Now my ankle is injured and may keep me from training more. Finally, I should have warmed up, but enjoyed visiting with my friend and never did.
Post race
Warm down:

Once again, I should have warmed down, but really didn’t, unless you count walking around the expo. I had my eye on the Jamba Juice smoothie table.  I also scored a piece of pizza and a shrimp taco. After walking around, I went and talked to my friend, called my husband, then headed out. I had another race the next day and it was time to go pick up that packet.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Injuries, a year off of running, and inadequate training.

Event comments:

This is a really great race. The scenery is pretty and the trail is softer on the body than pounding the pavement. The fact that there are a lot of walkers is nice as well, because it means there is something for everyone. I really appreciated the skin cancer screening and there was a great pre and post race expo with entertainment. They also raffled off a lot of really great prizes. The only thing that could have made the race better would be if I had won! ;)

Last updated: 2012-04-26 12:00 AM
00:54:57 | 03.11 miles | 17m 40s  min/mile
Age Group: 27/41
Overall: 393/624
Performance: Average
No mile markers, so I don't have that data
Course: Ran around the field of Laguna Elementary School, down the street, along a horse/mountain bike trail, around a lake, and back again.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2012-05-21 3:15 PM

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Long Beach, CA
Subject: iCureMelanoma 5k
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