Tag Archives: 12athon

12athon: Month Seven

We’re more than halfway through the 12athon!

Today was the hardest 12athon I’ve run yet. There weren’t any particularly gnarly challenges, but this is what the forecast looked like when we headed out:

The temperature had gone down about 3 degrees by the time we started, and it was very very cloudy. Almost no direct sunlight, which was nice, but we’ve had humidity like this all day:

So the run was very slow. About 3 hours for the full 12 miles, which included running, walking, breaks in air-conditioned stores to buy water, and general whining stops.

I am claiming the Naturalist points (6) for my fabulous shoes.

And many thanks to my ever fabulous running partner and husband for his water carrying, food encouraging, and ability to talk while running up hills skills.

I thought about doing the RUI (Running Under the Influence) challenge, but didn’t want to risk it with the heat. So now I’m going to go enjoy this:

and some salmon, bacon, avocado tacos. Mmmmm.


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12athon: Month Six

Because we’re halfway through the 12athon, and because I wanted a challenge, I decided to tackle Macchu Picchu (Machu Picchu: 12 miles up a hill. Can be the same hill, but the distance you travel downhill to run back up doesn’t count. 24 POINTS), and the Slacker’s 12-Hour Race (Slacker’s 12-Hour Race (AKA The 12 MPH): Run 1 mile during every hourly increment for 12 consecutive hours. 24 POINTS. 4 more points if you end at 12 p.m. (noon).). And because I was doing it anyway, I claimed points for Sunrise  (Sunrise: See the sunrise during your run. Find your local sunrise time on SunriseSunset.com4 POINTS).

Because we live very near a straight 1-mile stretch up a hill, my husband (who is awesome) came up with a great plan. We staggered the runs so that we started one on a “40” increment, and then started the next one on the hour. This allowed for around 1:20 between running legs, and still made sure I was running each leg within the allotted hour period.

During the Night Legs (first 6 miles) my husband took our car to the top of the hill, rode his bike down, and then rode the bike back up with me. This arrangement meant that I ran 3 extra miles (down the hill between legs) but felt safer in the dark.

During the Day Legs, he’d drive the car to the top, meet me there and drive me to the bottom, drop me off, and then drive to the top again. He was great about stopping partway up the hill to see if I needed water or any assistance.

Mile One


Mile Two

Mile Three

Mile Four

Mile Five

Mile Six

Mile Seven

Mile Eight

Mile Nine

Mile Ten

Mile Eleven

Mile Twelve

I managed to pull out a great split on the last leg, and it was pretty amazing to be done. It’s not that the 12 miles are hard (although the uphill is pretty killer), but being awake and having to run so frequently is mentally draining. We came back after every set and watched Big Bang Theory or Iron Chef America while snacking, so I wasn’t tempted to fall asleep and give up.

Elevation Chart for the Route

I’m so glad I tried these two challenges, and I hope I’m not too sore tomorrow! Video from my support crew will come when we’re not too tired. 🙂


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12athon: Month Five

May 12athon started off odd, but was a smashing success!

I had planned on doing various different challenges. I was going to attempt the Slacker 12 Hour challenge, the uphill challenge, and was looking for a 3rd. But then I decided to go home for Mother’s Day at the last minute, and forgot my (husband’s) GPS, my hat, my handheld water bottle, and most of my running food. Oh, and my light and pepper spray, without which I was NOT running at 1, 2 and 3 am (even on Coronado Island).


So I just started out this morning, no hat, weird water bottle that I carried, my phone in my other hand. My sister ran with me for the first two miles, then handed off her Nike+ GPS, which we weren’t sure would keep working. Our first two miles were 10:19, and 10:08, which included some walk breaks, so I just kept running a comfortable pace around the island.


Until the voice from my armband said “3 miles completed, last mile split, 9:28.” I don’t usually run 9:28 anythings. So I kept running the same speed, or so I thought, because my splits kept dropping. I kept checking my phone to see if the time was right, and it was. When I hit 5 miles at 45 minutes, I knew I was in for a huge PR.


I stopped at my parents house at mile 7 to use the bathroom, grab some ice, and get my bottle refilled, and then kept running, hurting but determined to see how fast I could run 12 miles. When the little voice on my armband FINALLY told me 12 miles, my time was 1:42:19. That’s HUGE! My Half Marathon PR is 2:28. I can definitely drop an incredible amount of time next time I run a race.


So only 12 points for me this month, but I am so incredibly happy with the run. It was amazing.

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Virtual 12athon: Month 4

So this was perhaps the hardest 12athon run I’ve had so far in this whole experience. It was entirely my fault, as I made several bad choices leading up to it.

Bad choice #1: On Tuesday, I decided to go for a hard 4 mile hilly run around UCLA, and then follow that run with a workout that included 50 pushups and 75 squats. When I haven’t done either of those exercises for at least 2 months. Ow.

Bad choice #2: Last night I decided to stay up until 2am working rewriting and formatting my portfolio, which is a requirement for graduation from my masters program. I also may have consumed things which included large amounts of caffeine, and small amounts of alcohol. Ow.

So, this morning, dehydrated, tired, and with screaming quads, I deferred running for awhile in favor of portfolio writing. And a tv show. And about 10 minutes where I laid on the bed and debated sleeping. I did not want to run. And I really didn’t want to run 12 whole miles.

But I got up and did it anyway. Not very happily, I might add.

My husband came along to be my bike crew, since his leg is still having some issues. I wore the Garmin, and now understand exactly how awesome all those little numbers can be. Having a countdown on my arm is utterly addicting. I also wore my usual running shoes, Vibram FiveFingers (KomodoSport).

I ran about 6 miles out-and-back on a bike path next to the freeway (I can run faster than the 5 freeway moves during rush hour…woo!) and then another 6 mile out and back from the house. I am working consciously to improve my fueling and test out foods during my longer runs now, so I had a banana at mile 4, a handful of Trader Joes pretzels at mile 6, and a hilarious pouch of what Starbucks calls baby food (really pureed fruit) at mile 8. It all worked well, although the Monster Rehab I cracked into with 2 miles to go won’t be making it into any race day plans. But by then I really needed the caffeine.

Thanks to the run and portfolio printing, I missed a work event, which was a bummer only slightly alleviated by the fact that I could earn points for it. My type-A personality revels in the virtual gold stars.

Final challenge list: Naturalist and Stung By Bees. Eyeing some big points for next month. Hmmm, 12 miles uphill can’t be too hard, right?


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Virtual 12athon: Pi Day Bonus

Luckily, the Pi Day Bonus Run had a short option, since I’m taking it easy until the LA Marathon. 3.14 miles, with the pi symbol on your clothes. Done, and done.

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Virtual 12athon: Month 3

This post is late, because school ate my life. Normally, I’m not one to mind schoolwork, but all of my classes this quarter have been closer to drudgery than usual. A 20 page paper on Andrew Carnegie is not my idea of a good time.

But, with only 1 paper left due (not until next Thursday), I wanted to continue memorializing my 12athon efforts.

I had all sorts of crazy plans for this run. I had gone through several permutations of challenges, added up all the various point options, but after writing two papers back to back, and with the LA Marathon coming up this weekend, I decided that I would do just a straight 12 mile run. Although, I ended up being late to class, so I also claimed the Stung By Bees point bonus.

I took all my marathon gear for a last trial, including my new running shorts (Lululemon…the hype is for a reason), and my compression socks, which I hadn’t tested on a long run yet. Still not sure about the hat…hoping to find my black one.

The route was a two-loop course, totaling 13.27 miles. It was hard, but extremely energizing to realize that I could now get up before class and run a half-marathon if I wanted to. Very mentally helpful for marathon prep.

I also finally discovered DailyMile, and started logging all my running mileage on there. I mostly love it for the statistics and graphs…I live for gold stars from the internet.

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Virtual 12athon: Month 2

So begins month 2 of the 12athon! For this month I decided to tackle the:

Masquerade: Run in a costume based on a holiday in that month. Photo or video evidence mandatory! 8 POINTS. 4 more points if you run as Cupid on February 12! (I did not run as Cupid, because I didn’t want to deal with wings…but I did dress up!) and,

“That Guy”: Sign up for a 10K, cross the finish line, turn around and run the course in reverse (stopping at the 12th mile is optional). 8 POINTS (I didn’t stop at 12…ran 12.4!)


We headed down to Tidelands park for the race start at 8…after the bathroom line, I had about 2 minutes to make it to the start. This picture was taken before I dashed off and shouldered my way through the walkers. Note the candy colored outfit, and the Valentine’s Day socks I found at Walgreens at 10pm! My husband had planned to run with me, dressed in similar colors, but due to injury, he became my bike crew/film crew for the day.

The race started with a run under the Coronado Bridge, then we ran by the golf courses until we reached the Strand, before we turned around and came back the same route.

I tried to reign my speed in for the first 10K, and came in at a 1:03.14. I can’t wait until I can do another 10K and see how far I can actually get under an hour.

I got my timing chip cut off, so I didn’t confuse the poor computers (or race officials), picked up my medal (because they were awesome, and I didn’t want them to run out) and headed out on the course again! I got several yells of “wrong way!” as I ran off, but it was hilariously run to run against the stream of people. The course got pretty sparse, and race officials were actually breaking it down, but Coronado has huge, safe, quiet streets, so it was pretty easy to stay on the same course.

My second 10K wasn’t too far off the pace of the first, and aside from my break at the 10K and one stretch break, I didn’t walk at all. A first for me! You can also see in the video below that I managed to beat 2 people during my 20K journey…I wasn’t last. 🙂

It was one of the best run races that I’ve ever been a part of, and one of my best races…both ways. 12athon month two DONE!



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