Posted by Lauren


Oh San Jose Rock ‘n Roll… I have so many things to say about you.

  • San Jose, hometown race!!!
  • 2006 – inaugural race – my mom ran (this was before she got me into running)
  • 2007 – mom ran again… I stayed in school like a good statistician
  • 2008 – my time was 2:11:56 (ran with my momma)
  • 2009 – October I had terrible calf pain (bruised and “burned”) that kept me sidelined
  • 2010 – my time was 1:41:58
  • 2011 – was a DNS – I got terrible shin splints from Oktoberfest the day before the race
  • 2012 – was also a DNS - we had a family emergency that took us all (minus David) out of California and we were unable to do this race
  • 2013 – my time was 1:41:54 (4 seconds faster than 2010 time! LOL)
  • For some reason I thought I’ve finished this race more than 3x but I guess I’m getting confused by the Turkey Trot, which covers a lot of the same route

How about I start with Friday?

After work I avoided the happy hour treats (pizza from downstairs and beer pong on the conference / ping pong table) so that I could get a run in before Sunday’s race. I did a giant loop around downtown Mountain View that put me at my gym ~mile 5. I did a few leg and arm exercises and then ran back to work. Seven pretty sweet miles.

rnr sanjose2013  1 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Saturday Morning – Let the carbs begin!

Kyle and I grabbed a stack of pumpkin spice pancakes from Crepevine in downtown Mountain View. We walked there – hoping to actually get pancakes from the local fire station. Turns out I read the fundraiser sign wrong and the pancake breakfast was at Firehouse #4, not #1. My bad. Our Crepevine pancakes were only oookaaayyy. We made a promise to order an actual crepe next time.

rnr sanjose2013  2 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

I quickly packed my race gear and drove down to San Jose for the expo. I did my very best to not miss the TweetUp that Brian (@PavementRunner) organized.

rnr sanjose2013  3 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Of course this crazy lady (=mom), skipping none the less, distracted me for a little bit. My mom and David arrived at the expo around 12:15 and gave me extra quarters for my parking meter. I ran out of the expo, a few blocks to my car, and somehow cut the side of my toe along the way. Not sure how that happened but a bloody toe kinda surprised me when I got home.

rnr sanjose2013  4 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

The expo was great! It was nice to chat with Twitter folk before the race and hear about their past and future races (Paris! Vegas! Chicago! oh my!). I picked up two boxes of Power Crunch protein bars in the peanut butter creme flavor (these). OMG they are sooooo good. It’s like a white chocolate Reese’s peanut butter cup made love to a Little Debbie bar. I ate one on the way home, one on Sunday after the race, two on Monday, one Tuesday, and one today. #addicted

Around 6:30 my mom, David, and I went to Los Gatos for a feast of more carbs Italian food!

rnr sanjose2013 13 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

I Gatti

25 E Main St, Los Gatos, CA

rnr sanjose2013 09 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

The {running} Lovebirds

This dimly lit, white-tablecloth Italian restaurant had an impressive menu. Indecisive minds chose to order family style so we could try a bit of everything…

rnr sanjose2013 10 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Top to bottom:

  • PEAR CARPACCIO – Sweet Pear, Wild Arugula, Pt. Reyes Blue Cheese, Polenta Croutons, Toasted Hazelnuts, Warm Honey Shallot Vinaigrette
    > polenta croutons = genius
  • PROSCIUTTO & SCALLOPS – Special of the night… with mashed potatoes and almond slivers
    > I looOOoooVe scallops, a little too buttery though
  • LAMB LOLLIPOPS – Grilled, Port Glaze, Garlic Potato Puree
    > port glaze was perfect
  • [unpictured] SPAGHETTI & MEATBALLS – House Made Meatballs, Ground Chuck, Veal & Pork, Veal Bolognese, Grana Parmesan
    > balls were a little dry (TWSS) but the veal bolognese helped

rnr sanjose2013 12 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

  • MAHI MAHI – Special of the night
    >> probably wouldn’t order this again, wasn’t bad… but it didn’t WOW me


rnr sanjose2013 14 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Reppin’ the original PHS Dance sweater (jk I stole it from Nicole’s closet) but still… it was really nice out weather-wise and the race started at 8 am. You should really consider signing up for this race because San Jose is like destination #1 in CA (ha!) and the conditions are always perfect ;)

rnr sanjose2013 15 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

I split up from my mom and David and joined Corral 3. We started ~4 minutes after the gun, and off I went on the familiar streets of San Jose! I didn’t have any goals for this flat and fast course, just go out and have a good time. Surprisingly, I decided to put my headphones in my pocket and run without music. The course has a handful of bands and cheer squads, but usually I just mute iPod music when I run by them. Not this time!

Screen Shot 2013 10 09 at 3.16.56 PM San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

You wouldn’t know it unless you look at the elevation, but Mile 1 – Mile 2.5 represents a 30 ft elevation loss. Couple that with the excitement of a race and the thrill of weaving/passing people, it’s no wonder why my first few miles are my fastest. I leave no juice in the tank for the end, but that’s fine by me. We ran towards San Jose State University, made a left to run in the neighborhood north of downtown, and then took another left at Mile 2 to go through Japantown. There was great crowd support from SJSU fraternities here. I kept my 7:23 pace until Mile 5, even hitting low 6 for 200m or so when I passed the start line at mile 4.5 (and the 1:45 pacer) I’m realizing that crowd = running motivation.

rnr sanjose2013 1 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

At Mile 5 I took a bathroom break at a portapotty in front of the Shark Tank (GO Sharks!). It maybe added :20 rest time, not bad. I made sure to still be ahead of the 1:45 pacer for good measure. We passed by “The Alameda” (shops) and then ran a boring part of town until Mile 7, where we passed by fancy homes. I really like this part of the race because I imagine what it would be like to have $3 million to spare for an overpriced Silicon Valley home… oh, and there’s always a great band here too.

rnr sanjose2013 2 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Miles 7.5 – 9 are also kind of boring and there’s a slight incline. Max elevation clocks in at 118 feet so there’s really no room for complaining on this course. Mile 9 was my slowest of them all at 8:01 avg pace. By this time I was ready for the race to be over and I knew that if I could dig deeeeeep inside me I could maybe squeeze out a 1:40+seconds… but that didn’t seem like a good idea considering I have 2 more half marathons this month (!!) Instead, I averaged 7:49 for the remainder of the race.

So many memorable spots on the last half of the course:

  • Mile 9.5 – Rose Garden where we took photos for dance team in high school
    189471 4864777028 346 n San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013(back row, third from right)
  • Mile 10 – Lincoln High School where we had many dance competitions
  • Mile 10.5 – Cross the street where my high school bff Vanessa’s family lives
  • Mile 10.75 – Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum, 6th grade field trip spot
  • and of course, Mile 12.5 the SAP Center where my beloved San Jose Sharks play!

rnr sanjose2013 3 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

I bobbed & weaved a bit too much, so I still had ~ mile to go after passing the tank. I kept thinking “are we there yet??!” At Mile 12 I kept thinking about form and a longer stride and a faster stride and water and just finishing and finalizing my fantasy football lineup (#truth). I had a slow pace alert of my Garmin that let me know when my pace rose above 8:25. It went off only a handful of times towards the end of the race, not counting water stations.

san jose rock n roll race photo San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

And then…. the finish line! Sprinted in sub 7 to an official finish of 1:41:54. That’s 4 whopping seconds faster than my finish time in 2010.

rnr sanjose2013 4 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013


Screen Shot 2013 10 09 at 3.29.45 PM San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013


Screen Shot 2013 10 09 at 3.17.27 PM San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Screen Shot 2013 10 09 at 3.19.07 PM San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

(Incline is very much exaggerated here. I wish I could change the axes.)


Screen Shot 2013 10 09 at 3.17.49 PM San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

(start off fast, end tired. that’s how you’re supposed to race, right? :)

I love where the race ends… the Tech Museum!

rnr sanjose2013 5 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

I grabbed my finishers’ medal, a water bottle, and then headed to the sides to use my remaining 4% battery to finalize my fantasy football lineup. I picked up Kerley from the Jets and only had time to place him on one of my teams. I made the wrong decision to start Eli Manning instead of Russell Wilson but overall everything worked out and I won both of my games! Even when my other team had a benched QB (RG III) and the temp replacement I put in scored a laughable 2 points (he tore his right ACL mid-game and is done for the season). I sure know how to pick ‘em.

My phone died. So I ran over to Starbucks and asked my step-bro Ben (he works there) to text his dad and tell them to meet me at the “L” sign.

finish San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Photo Cred:

While I waited for David and my mom to finish, I ran into my Ragnar SoCal teammate Rachel and Mr. PR (PersonalRecord) PavementRunner. It was great to catch up with Rachel, hear about Brian’s 1:37 race, and meet some of his SF run club friends like Jennifer of KineticFix. I’m sad I missed Sonia the Mexigarian, but by the sounds of it she had a pretty fulfilling, PR-worthy race experience.

p.s. all the links in that paragraph point back to their recaps – I love reading race recaps!!
p.p.s. like this one by Jacqueline, who did the Mermaid Duathlon on Saturday and covered 11 extra miles while still smiling. You go girl!

I finally ran into the lovebirds and they said they had a pretty great race…

rnr sanjose2013 6 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

lovebirds san jose rock n roll San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

Except Shirley thought there were too many walkers in Corral 5.

Welp, that’s another race for the books! I really should update the Races Page… EDIT: I DID!

rnr sanjose2013 16 San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

And might I add that next year will probably be a very ROCK n ROLL focused year. I’m thinking Chicago, St. Louis, Vegas, San Francisco…. the list goes on.

What’s your absolute favorite thing about race day?
Post-race brunch!! We went to the San Pedro Square Market and had burgers and hot dogs :)

Do you race with headphones?
SO many people sported the Jaybird bluetooth headphones and I heard someone say they made them feel nauseous

Rock ‘n Roll fan? Who’s your band?



3 Responses to San Jose Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon, 2013

  1. Kelli H says:

    I’m so impressed by your pace! Looks like you had a good race!
    Kelli H recently posted..Brew Review: Bridgeport Hop HarvestMy Profile

  2. Jane says:

    Awesome race girl! A PR is a PR. I was supposed to run but had a family emergency myself on Sunday. Looks like I missed out on a fun race.
    Jane recently posted..#RagnarNapa (10/20 + 10/21)My Profile

  3. Jennifer says:

    Awesome race, so great to meet you & thanks for the shout out! Must have been fun ‘running’ down memory lane…literally and figuratively. If you’re up in the city and wanna run, you know who to call!

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