Tuesday, May 22, 2012

RACE REPORT: Pasadena Half & Mitch's 100th Full Marathon

My latest race was so much more than a race to me.  Being able to see our dear friend cross the Finish Line on his 100th Marathon was so exciting!

Boys and I traveled into Pasadena on Friday so we could have an entire day to explore Pasadena and have dinner with Mitch and some of other friends.

When I walked out of the hotel on Sunday AM (race day) - my sunglasses STEAMED up.


I have not been around any humidity since I left TN/KY area over 8 years ago.  After the race,  I found out it was at 87%+ humidity.

This Desert Dweller doesn't like humidity.

Met up with the Marathon Maniacs and Half Fanatics at 6am for our traditional group photo.

Pasadena Half Fanatics and Marathon Maniacs

Good friend, Andrea and I
Approximately 3K Half Marathoners and 1,500 Full Marathoners.  In addition, an assortment of 5K, 10k's and Bike Tours.  Overall, I was told there was over 7K participants.

Within 5 minutes before Gun Time.  I needed to go to the bathroom AGAIN. 

I decided to tough it out, and felt I could make the entire race, without any bathroom issues.  I did that on Angel (January) - and never had to stop.

However, prior to that at Mile 7 - I could no longer hold it.  I HAD to use the porta potty.  Waiting in line and then use the porta potty cost me about 3-4 minutes, but there is no way I would of made it to the Finish.

I was prepared for lots of hills on this course.  There were some, but nothing I would call very steep. I just kept my head down and didn't look up the hill.  I found that to be a great mental trick for me.  If I don't see the hill ahead of me, it cannot freak me out. 

Pasadena Half shared the road with the Full Marathoners until we reached the Rose Bowl and the Full participants vered off.

When we separated from the Full racers - that is when my body started to fade.  I already had ate two energy packets and now, I was reaching for my Clif Bloks.  As with Hollywood, I kept it in my mouth and starting sucking. I was still fading, no denying it. 

I run a two part race.  Get to Mile 10 by 1:30 - and I know I can sub2 on the course.

I reached Mile 10 at 1:32.  Not too bad for a fading soul like me.

Luckily, Miles 10-11 are a lot downhill.  Phew!

The thing I liked about this course - there were a lot of trees to block the direct sunlight.  The humidity was enough to deal with - but to deal with sunlight?  Oh dear.

By the time I came across the Finish Line - I was SOAKING wet.  It looked like I had poured a bucket of water on me.

After eating and drinking at the Finish Line I headed over to the tent, where Narine and my boys were getting ready for Mitch's 100th Celebration.

Here is the tent, before the subway sandwiches arrived:

Here is my traditional Ladybug Ball and Finisher Medal photo:

Then it was onto the REAL fun - waiting for Mitch to cross the Finish Line AND the party.

Approximately at 10am, Narine and I made our way to the Finish Line.  We knew her husband and Mitch would be crossing around the same time (between 10 and 10:30am).  I asked Mitch to text me at Mile 23 so we knew he was half hour away from the Finish (approximately). 

At 10:15 I rec'd the text from Mitch he was at Mile 23.

Given the horrible humidity and heat - he was a little slower than we anticipated.

A few friends came in and told us Narine's husband, Rocky wasn't too far behind them.  So - we started looking.  We finally spotted him coming in and here is me screaming at him to "RUNNNNNNNN!"  Rocky made a blazing fast sprint to the Finish. The crowd went nuts!  

Then...the wait for Mitch - here is Narine and I waiting - I was the Official Sign holder and Narine would be the photographer...........

And more waiting..............

 And then....I see him (with our friend Andrea)...I make my way to the Finish and hold up the sign

And closer............... (the "100") sign off to the right is his Mom!

And then....the moment.  12 years in the making.....Mitch crosses the Finish Line (with friend, Andrea)!!!  

I was jumping up and down (and crying).  The Announcer did such a great job at announcing his arrival into the Finish area.  THANK YOU!!!!!!!!


Mitch with his mom - she was so proud of him - look at those smiles!

Walt, Rocky, Mitch, Andrea and me


One of my favorite pictures of the day
Group shot!  Not sure what Mitch is looking at????

Andrea, Mitch, Jessica - Looking S.E.X.Y.!
For more photos - CLICK HERE to view my FB photo album of the days festivities

My thanks to Pasadena Marathon who provided such a great event for Mitch's 100th.  MY FAB-O thanks to Narine and Andrea who worked so hard to help me get the festivities together!  I love you gals!!!

To Mitch - thank you for allowing all of us to be a part of your journey and adventures.  You are an inspiration to many.  Onward to 150!!!

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(c) C. Ragsdale 2011-12
Run F.A.B.,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Running Coach, Certified Sports Nutritionist & Public Speaker
~My Facebook Fan Page ~Follow Me on Twitter


  1. I LOVE IT!!! And thank YOU!! <3

  2. I love this story! A great example of running friendships joining forces to celebrate and have fun. Everyone looks so happy! - Janet

    1. Janet - thanks for the comment. YES, it is an amazing community we have. I am so glad to have known Mitch (and many others, even before my first race). Grateful for the internet and a chance to meet so many online and then at races.


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