Disclaimer: I received an entry into the La Jolla Half Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews! All opinions are my own.
In exactly one month, I will be taking on one of the half marathons I said I would never do again – the La Jolla Half marathon! Yikes!
The La Jolla Half is a beautiful course that starts off at the Del Mar Fairgrounds and finishes at the La Jolla Cove. It also happens to be the second race in a series of three that you must complete in order to finish the Triple Crown Challenge. Learn more about that here. Spoiler alert – you get a big extra medal to add onto your collection and a breakfast burrito at the end of your 3rd race. 🙂
Unfortunately, the course, despite being very scenic, is filled with hills. Anyone that’s run this will warn you of the infamous one at mile 6. At the bottom of the hill, you’re at 50 ft in elevation. At the peak of the hill, you’re at 440 ft. That’s almost a 400 ft increase! Sigh. And even after that increase, you don’t get a satisfying immediate decline. It’s just rolling hills for a few miles more. 😦
Reflecting back on it, I think what is most interesting about this hill is that it’s really more of a mental challenge than a physical one, although it does require that you actually train for the distance. Before you run up the hill, you’re running down this beautiful route by the beach and right at the bottom of the hill, they have a water station and Taiko drummers (at least they did when I ran it back then). The view of the hill and the drums psych you out a bit. Like most people, I walked up most of that hill. My foot began tingling like and I didn’t want to injure it any further. I was able to successfully finish the half, but I felt extremely defeated. To this day, the La Jolla Half holds the record for my worst time. EDITED: That’s a lie. I just checked all of my times and America’s Finest City holds this record. Heat and humidity don’t go well with me. Anyway, this year, I’m coming back with a vengeance. It’s been 2 years since I last ran it and I’ve improved a bit as a runner, both mentally and physically. At least, I think I have. 🙂 There’s no way I’ll PR this course (or maybe I can? Who knows?), but if I can beat my last time, I’ll be happy. Also, because it’s Thursday, here’s a #TBT to when I first ran it.
If you would like to join me on this course, you can use code BIBRAVE10 in order to save $10 off your registration fee. If the half isn’t your thing, they also have a 5k you can register for. 🙂