La Puente Main Street Halloween Run

I ran one 5K last year. After the race, I wasn’t left with the desire to immediately sign up for another race. I didn’t have a bad experience, in fact I won a pair of shoes raffled off by one of the race sponsors, Run With Us. Still, I didn’t perform as well as I would have liked. Maybe I was a little discouraged.

Long Beach was different. I met my goals and came away thinking about my next race. Would it be another half? Or would I begin training in earnest for a full marathon? LA in March? I read bloggers’ race reports and looked up training plans. I’m still undecided about the LA Marathon, but know there will be other races in the fall and winter.

In fact, I’ve already run one race.

Lori and I ran the La Puente Main Street 5K/10K Halloween Run on Sunday morning. We decided on it last minute. The idea of running a shorter race so close to home and in costume seemed like fun. In fact, before the Main Street run came up, I thought my next race would be on Halloween for the LA Cancer Challenge 5K/10K.

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13.1 miles to the promised land

I had two goals for the half marathon.

1. Run all 13.1 miles. I’d run all my miles in training and wanted to stay consistent. The most I’d run during training was 11 miles. I hoped that I’d trained well and was prepared to run the entire course.

2. Finish in under 2:06 (about a 9:30 pace).

I didn’t doubt myself until two days before the race. I ran Friday morning. I was slow, tired and simply never found my stride. I tried telling myself that it was all mental and I was just nervous. My pep talk didn’t help. I cut my run short and went home feeling dejected. I hoped that I’d gotten my bad run out of the way just in time to have a good (or even great) run on Sunday morning.

And I did.
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I should be sleeping. I need to run 13.1 miles in Long Beach in about eight hours (I’ll start shortly after 7 am). But first, I need to make sure my music is in order, ’cause that’s what matters, right? Plus, focusing on music keeps my mind off of the pre-race jitters and worries.

Cultura, Mexico

Hometown roots

My roots are showing right now. This is typical. Since I first started dying my hair five years ago, I’ve never gotten the recommended touch up six weeks later. I typically wait 3-4 months to get rid of the grays after a little prompting from my mom.

This time around, I couldn’t pass up my mom’s offer to set up an appointment with her yoga buddy, Sylvia.

Mom picked up her cell phone, made the call and made an appointment for the following morning while Sylvia’s children would be at school.

The next morning, I made the 5-minute drive from my mom’s to Sylvia’s house. She greeted me warmly and invited me in. Her home looked as I remembered it, sans children and with a young woman, let’s call her Alicia, sitting at the dining table examining various items of gold jewelry.

At first, I thought Alicia was a family member or close friend because she and Sylvia were talking about mutual friends. I didn’t realize they had just met moments earlier when Alicia had knocked on her door asking if she had any gold to sell. Sylvia found some broken bracelets, lone earrings and other items to sell. While Alicia inspected and weighed the jewelry, Sylvia started dying my hair.

After getting the pesky gray roots and dying the rest, Sylvia put up the wet hair on top of my head. She removed her gloves and for the next half hour while the dye set she made calls to friends and neighbors. Earlier, Sylvia had promised to help Alicia find some more people willing to sell gold.

In quick Spanish, Sylvia explained why she had so much confianza (trust) in a stranger whose named she didn’t even know. Shortly after meeting Alicia, Sylvia discovered that she was from Jalisco. Not only that, she was from a neighboring rancho to Sylvia’s hometown. The people they were talking about when I arrived turned out to be mutual contacts. It was a coincidence that made a big difference for Alicia. Without the hometown connection, she likely would have not had much success going door to door.
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Escuela, Política

A different kind of PSA

The bad thing about having a TV and watching it is that invariably I’ll come across political ads. Most are just annoying, but some of them are pretty awful. For example, when I was in Nevada a few weeks ago, I saw one of Sharron Angle’s commercials during the UCLA v. Texas game. The end of the anti-immigrant ad called Senator Harry Reid “the best friend illegals ever had.” It made me feel sick (or it could’ve been the cigar and cigarette smoke in the casino).

Anyway, this message from Danny Oso’s little brother, Eddie, makes me a bit more excited about get out the vote efforts and the upcoming election. Danny writes:

My little brother wanted to get involved with the midterm elections. I ony helped him with some facts and editing the video. He wrote and drew everything himself. Please make sure you vote!

If you’re not yet registered, go here. The registration deadline is coming up!