Preflight run

Apparently the Austin airport has started more 6 am flights. Usually there is no one in line for security. Leaving my house at 4:20 am should have been fine. Thursday morning was a madhouse!

It took me almost 45 minutes to get through security. My first time taking carry on only. As soon as I got through the scanner I heard my name on the loudspeaker. Shit! I was THAT person. The asshole the whole plane is waiting on. And that meant no breakfast. And no time for makeup.

I didn’t even put my boots back on. I sprinted through the airport to my gate. Luckily I wasn’t the last one and a few guys behind me were later. I ended up putting my shoes back on when I got my carryon stowed, thank goodness there was room.

Forgot my Epic bars were in that suitcase, so I had to buy breakfast. I will probably be sorry Iater but I needed to eat. Tossed the biscuit which was wrapped separately and ate a hard boiled egg, cheese, and grapes. Yeah only one of those is AIP allowed. After today my food is provided for me , which is fine, at least it’s gluten free.

Waiting for my buddies to get in. Boston arrives in time for lunch and Denver in time for dinner. ūüôā my team arrives tomorrow. Sister is the only one who didn’t come this year.

I am looking forward to having an extra day in the area. I’ve actually never explored Berkley at all. Usually I stick to San Francisco.

Race Report: Nike Women’s Marathon and Half Marathon

Race Report: Nike Women’s Race

Expo:  The expo hype was huge.  Luckily we got there Friday morning right after it opened and beat the crowds.  No lines to get our packets.IMG_2243[1]  The expo itself was nice, but Nike, Nuun, Paul Mitchell, LUNA, and Neutrogena were the only booths.IMG_2246[1]

Pre-race:  Seemed well organized.  Plenty of porta-potties.  Bag drop was easy, lining up was easy.  There was only 5 corrals though, for 32,000 people.

Course: ¬†The start was crowded which was frustrating. ¬†I was in the first corral behind the elites, but they let the first 3 go all at the same time. ¬†This did not bode well for the first couple of miles.¬† ¬†The fog was so heavy that ¬†couldn’t see anything. ¬†Not to mention it made for a very humid and wet race. ¬†The course was challenging to say the least. ¬†Nothing that I couldn’t handle, but it was tough, some of the hills were pretty bad.

It wasn’t my best but it wasn’t my worst. ¬†Definitely the hardest course I’ve ever run and the weather didn’t help. ¬†I was proud of myself for what I accomplished and I truly had nothing left when I was done.

Refreshment:¬†¬†On course-Clif shot blocks, water, and Nuun. ¬†I know I took some Nuun but it was so watered down, I couldn’t taste it.

Post Race: ¬†¬†You get a Tiffany’s finisher necklace instead of a medal. ¬†Half and Full get the same one. ¬†From a San Francisco fireman in a tux. IMG_2341[1]¬†This year was the 10 year anniversary. ¬†The necklace was good, but not as cute as I hoped. ¬†I wore it all last week though.IMG_2324[1]

Whole Foods sponsored the finisher food.  LUNA protein bar, banana, reusable bottle of water, fruit cup.

If you went to the finisher village and waited in long lines, you could get goodies from the Whole Foods tent (only GF item was Popchips).   Also a long line, but worth the wait were massages and full size Neutrogena products!

Overall the race was cool, but I am not sure I will do it again. ¬†The crowds at the start were insane and that’s one of my pet peeves. ¬†The crowds weren’t too bad when I finished, but by time my mom finished, the lines to jut get your food and get out of the finisher area were insane! ¬†An hour just to get her out of the finisher area, then another hour plus to wait in the shuttle line to get back to Union Square.

Adios San Fran!

I did not want to go home Monday.  We had a noon flight out, leaving for airport at 9 am.

Dan planned on getting up at 5:30 (which is the middle of the night to him) to get ready, pack, and catch a few more sights.¬† I woke up at 4:30 to get¬†one last run in, this time through Fisherman’s Wharf to Embarcadero, short 3 miler.¬† I saw all of maybe 3 people the whole time (2 of them worked at the Boudin Bakery and were up in the window making bready goodness).¬† It was cool and peaceful.

I made a trip to Starbucks for us, we got our bags to the front desk and took a cab out to the bridge, because Dan hadn’t been yet.¬† This is all he got to see…

Told him he’d have to look at my pictures or remember what he saw from Alcatraz.

We then jumped over to see the house from Full House.¬†¬†The¬†residents hate having people stop there (notice the ribbon across the steps).¬† I imagine it’s annoying.

Then I searched YELP for a good breakfast place, found one just blocks from the hotel, we’d been walking by it all week.¬† Hollywood Diner.¬† OMG, the reviewers were all right!¬†

Dan had bacon scramble with fresh sourdough

I had the California omelette.¬† Eggs, scallions, fresh crab, avocado, fresh capers (skipped the cheese, although I didn’t want to)¬†and the best fresh California fruit.¬† I hate eating out for breakfast most of the time, but I could eat there every day if I had to!

Then it was off.¬† I don’t like flying for more than a couple of hours, so I was getting stir crazy.¬† Flew once again during meal-time, so I planned ahead and got the same meal from the airport location of Boudin Bakery, that I’d had Sunday and ate it once we got in the air.¬† Dan opted for one of the airline’s snack plates, not sure why.¬† There were great places to get something to go in the airport.

In Houston we stopped for 1 last time to raise some hell and get something to eat.  Too bad the food and service sucked.  Glad I never fly through that terminal.  We had a short layover in one of the smaller terminals, so choices were very limited.

Short flight to Austin and then we were home (sort of, had an hour drive to the house).  We were both BEAT.  Had 2 kitties that were happy we were home.

Last blog about the trip, I promise ūüėČ

Sunday Funday

First stop Sunday morning.¬†¬† Zeitgeist biker bar, I found it on CitySearch.¬† Best Bloody Mary’s in Cali.¬† Long trolley ride, but Dan said he thinks it really is one of the best.¬† Total dive, but¬†that’s¬†probably what made it so¬†fun.¬† And we even met a guy who randomly told us he loves Lucero, lol.

Enjoying it until the end

I even had¬†a sip¬†and liked it, and I don’t even like them generally.¬† It was super hot, so even if I wanted to, that’s all that I could handle, and I can handle hot.¬† Honestly, I just wanted the lemon and the pickled green bean.¬†

Met¬†one of the¬†other couples and then headed to Boudin’s Bakery for lunch.¬† It was my idea, i’d walked by it several times and thought it was one of those local places we had to try.¬† Dan said that was the best grilled cheese he’s ever had (on their fresh baked sourdough).¬† He also had chili in a bread bowl.

I had chili and this spring salad with chicken.  The salad had Granny Smith apples, cranberries, chicken, mixed greens, tons of walnuts, and feta.  (Feta is supposed to be less reactive on your stomach, so I tried). At first I was bummed to have a salad instead of the 100 other things that involved bread on the menu.  But guess what?  The salad was EXCELLENT!  I loved it.

There was actually a moment when Dan was telling me how good that grilled cheese was, where I broke down and I said I was going to eat bread.¬† I was surrounded by bread all weekend and it smelled SO good.¬† Dan got upset with me and reminded me that if I got a reaction from it and got sick,¬†my trip¬†would be ruined.¬† He was right, but sitting just outside the bakery, smelling the bread, seeing the bread, hearing everyone talk about bread was hard.¬† I’m not that big of a bread person, but I do appreciate high quality bread.

So then I just joked about eating some.

Then started making our way to Alcatraz Ferry to meet the rest of our crew.

And on to the boat

Then they turned us loose on Alcatraz

I love lighthouses.  The one at Alcatraz is still active, I saw it every morning through the fog.

Sometimes I think I need one of these at home

While we were inside, the haze and fog cleared.  I  had no idea the island had so much plant and bird life, it was gorgeous!

And then we departed back to San Francisco to hurry up and get ready for the company dinner ūüôā

Things I like Thursday: dinner dates

Even if those dinner dates are with 12 other people ūüėȬ† Here’s the whole crew in front of the mural at our hotel after the company dinner.¬† Yes, I am the least dressed and the most cold!

Epic Roasthouse near the Bay Bridge in San Francisco on Sunday night

I chose to sit near the fireplace, hoping they’d light it.¬† No such luck.

Our waiter was a recent immigrant from Italy.¬† He was pretty dreamy, although I couldn’t understand much he said ūüėȬ† One lady at the table flirted with him pretty hard all night long.¬† Pretty sure he was scared.

A little bread platter to start.¬† Fresh sourdough, corn wafers, and cheese drops.¬† I heard the sourdough was great, the rest was ok.¬† Didn’t stop 12 people from eating 6 plates of it over the course of the meal.¬† I didn’t realize SF was so into bread, it was EVERYWHERE (I also didn’t know that’s where sourdough originated, yeah, i’m slow).

For appetizer, I ordered the “Minimally Manipulated Raw Seafood of the Day” (title still makes me giggle), which was Tuna Tartar with herbed pesto.¬† This is the only tuna I had all weekend, it’s actually not on a lot of menus out there. I’m not usually all raw except for sushi, but this was delightful!¬† I shared with Dan and Lacey, they are also tuna lovers (it was much bigger than it looks).

Giant heirloom tomato caprese tower for Dan and a few others at the table.¬† I tasted the tomato and some cheese with the basil pesto sauce.¬† It was quite tasty.¬† Dan didn’t really care for the herbed biscuit on the top and bottom.

I was conflicted on what to order for dinner.¬† Half the table, including Dan, got the “steak and cake” which was a filet of beef and a crab cake.¬† I opted for the Wood Oven Roasted Whole Fish (sebring)¬†with Cranberry Beans, Scarlet Turnips and Coriander Seed Vinaigrette.

Thank goodness they debone it for you.¬† Fish carcasses at the table freak me out.¬†¬† I liked the sides more than the fish, it was good.¬† Don’t think that is my favorite type of fish.

I didn’t photograph all of the sides, but we had at least 10 pass and serve sides.¬† I tried the sauteed mushrooms, the potato onion pie (not really a pie), baked potato, and the roasted potatoes.

Dan told me about 100 times that his food was awesome.  He had the steak and cake, plus the mac and cheese (he claims top 3 ever). I had a bite of the inside of the crab cake and it was really good. 

I pouted during dessert, because there was nothing I could eat.¬† Everyone at the table got something except for me and I really had a hankering for sweet.¬† There are no pictures, I was protesting!¬† Dan got french toast with maple ice cream and fruit.¬† He gave me a few blackberries.¬† Yay?¬† He said it was good, but didn’t have room to eat it all.¬†

Everyone headed back to the hotel bar after our 3 hour dinner.

Hotel Bar curtain=cheesy.  Prom poses anyone? 

Bad hand placement, makes my butt look ginormous!

I headed to bed since I don’t drink.¬† Plus it was late, I was tired, and i’m an old lady ūüėČ

The Golden Run

Saturday morning I woke up when Dan did.  He had business meetings until the afternoon.  I had the business of trying to run.  Worried was an understatement after my fatigue on Friday.

I ran from the hotel, across the Golden Gate Bridge and back.¬† Best run of my life (at least mentally and scenery wise, pace was good).¬† Words can’t even describe it.¬† I am still reeling from it.¬†

I never run with a phone, but Dan made me take it.¬† Glad I did, because I could take photos ūüôā

It was cold, drizzly, and 100% AWESOME.¬† I started from the hotel, hung a left into Fisherman’s Wharf and started toward the Golden Gate.¬† Mostly streets and sidewalks with a little bit of crushed granite trail.

First landmark I saw (other than the Wharf) was Ghirardelli chocolate.   Thank goodness there were no smells involved, haha!

Passed a couple of bayside parks and marinas

Gosh the bridge looks FAR

There is Alcatraz across the bay

Moving on, a little closer

Once I got closer, I realized the trail dead-ended under the bridge.¬† Turned around and found a way up that wasn’t the highway (which I was avoiding).¬† Steps.¬† Lots of them and STEEP.¬† Up I went at about mile 5, still running, didn’t want to get stiff or break my stride.

I was energized when I stepped on to the bridge

Garmie showed it was time for me to turn around to complete my scheduled 11.  No way in hell could I not finish running across the bridge to the other side.  It was only another half a mile.  YAY I made it!!!  I look like crap, but I was so happy.

I briefly scanned the area before heading back (while I downed Sports Beans, which was the only thing I had packed).

San Francisco and my hotel is somewhere over there…

Sausalito (name makes me cookie hungry)

I began back.  This is right before I exited the bridge

Instead of the steps on the way down, I found another route, a really steep hill (you pick your battles I guess).  This was 1 of 3 steep inclines on the route, although not too bad.

Retraced my same route on the way back.  Saw a really cool Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe festival and the Dolphin Club Swimmers. 

I would up with 12 miles, which was 1 more than I needed on the schedule.  Mentally I think it did me more good than I can explain.  Making it through my whole run and across the bridge seemed impossible the day before.

While I may have worn 100 layers of clothes walking around and at the ballpark, I was the least dressed runner I saw and I was completely comfortable while running in a tank and shorts.  Everyone else looked like they were expecting a blizzard, lol!  There was tons of tights, jackets, and beanies.

Made sure I walked about half a mile afterward, hit the hotel gym for stretching, water and an apple (love they had fruit in there!)

Absolutely Golden ūüôā

Friday Night Lights-SF style

Started off the day with a quick run before heading to the airport.¬† Wasn’t the best workout, but it sufficed.

All 13 of us flew from ATX to Houston to San Francisco.¬† We’d be in the air during lunch, so I grabbed a strawberry almond salad and baked potato from Wendy’s to eat during lunch-time.¬† Glad I did (and had a snack too), because we didn’t eat dinner until pretty late and my options weren’t that great.

I  had some weird bloating/swelling from the flight which was uncomfortable for sure and not typical for me.  Glad that was only during the flight.

Landed, got checked into the hotel and then half of us headed  on the bus to AT&T field to see the Giants vs Phillies.

The stadium was gorgeous!¬† Dan bought what was picked as the “top 3 seats to see a MLB from”.¬† They were pretty awesome.

This was the view behind the seats

Homerun ball recovery crew

Goofing around on the trolley

Had a first for all of us.¬† A real “bench clearing brawl” during the game.¬† Never seen one live at a baseball game before!¬† (only hockey)

I had a few setbacks in the park.¬† #1, the bathrooms closest to us were downstairs.¬† A lot of stairs.¬† I had trouble getting back up the stairs.¬† WTF?¬†¬†My legs were so fatigued I didn’t think i’d¬†make it up the whole way.¬† I haven’t¬†struggled with stairs since I was overweight.¬† This upset me.

Then it was dinner time.¬† The only Gluten Free option that I could find, other than eating a piece of meat without a bun was a piddly little grilled chicken salad.¬† I’m glad Emerald was giving out nuts as the promotion before the game, because I had to dig into those before we left the park.

Once the sun went down and the fog set in, it got pretty cold.¬† I am fine if I am moving, but sitting still, I get cold easily.¬† Don’t get me wrong, this girl wasn’t complaining, but it was uncomfortable.¬† You can tell by the photos that I am cold (and not so cute any more).

I was wearing a sleeveless tech shirt, a light wool sweater, my RNR SA tech zip-up on top.¬† Then jeans, Dan’s hoody, my hoody on my legs.¬† Friend’s boyfriend bought that blanket ($60!, ouch!)¬†and Dan made me wear the beanie (first time ever wearing one, they look dumb on me).¬† Can you believe I was still kind of cold?¬†¬† I think the people behind me were locals, notice they are wearing shorts?

When we got back to the room, a big bowl of regional fruit was delivered.¬† (I was giddy with excitement).¬† Found out later on that Dan’s boss had it sent to all of the guys.¬† I SO loved it.¬† I ate all of it before we returned.¬† Came in handy for snacks all weekend ūüôā

Day #1, although challenging, was a good day.  Good day indeed.