AFC Lessons Learned

Pic from San Diego Tribune Online- w/ Bandidos Brett and Derek

This race was definitely a learning experience for me. I really wanted to use this race to assess what I need to work on and I feel like I learned a lot.
Just a quick recap, I took 2nd place by 10 seconds to Mary Akor.


Top 5

I was on 5:45 pace until after mile 10 where the hills and lack of energy slowed my pace. My ending time of 1:17:27 was a 5:55 average pace. Yikes.  I really wanted to use this course to break 1:16, but I know it is a hard course and I will get it at the next one.
I came through the 4 mile in a little over 22 minutes (screaming downhill between miles 3 and 4). My 10k split was 35:12, a 10k PR, ha!
I was at 57:40 at the 10 mile, a 10 mile PR for me, and then things headed south. (i.e. note the HUGE amount of time for my last 5k. wowza) This is where I let Mary start to break away from me. I was so out of energy and really wish I had brought a gel with me. Which of course, got in my head.
In the last mile I was hanging on. I have been really good at finishing faster my last few races, but oh well, some days you have it, some you don’t. My body had goosebumps which I am guessing was not a good sign. But, I made it over the finish line and am happy to report that it was the first race that I ran so hard I was going to puke at the end. hardcore.
I am very happy to have come in second place…its all about who shows up at the race.  I made some money and was thrilled at being so close to first. Then that thrill ended later in the day and I realized I should have tried harder to win. Ugh. Hindsight is 20/20 I guess.


I do love running this race though, and I love racing in California. My Bandido teammates ran so well and I am so proud to be on such a speedy team! Thanks to my fast fellas for catching me and letting me hang on for a few miles. You guys are the best and I am so lucky to have you as my friends!

Matt and I

Lessons Learned:
Lesson #1- become a more agressive racer.  period.
Lesson #2- Take a gel during the race- I underestimated the effect the humidity took on me. I only took water on the course as I was afraid my stomach would revolt with some unknown sports drink on the course. As I watched everyone around me tear into a gel at mile 6, I almost asked them if they would share!
Lesson #3- WORK ON FORM!!! I am super embarrassed to post my race pics here, They are truly that awful. But if you really want to see some nightmarish breakdown of form, feel free to find them on AFC race results page.
Lesson #4- Get back to racing weight. I definitely have had a fun summer gaining some weight. but now it is ‘go’  time and I need to get my head back in the game.

Lukas and Em!

oooo..I almost forgot, this was the second race in my life I ran without my Garmin and just ran to race, letting the time take care of itself. It was so freeing running with just a Timex and not a huge computer on my wrist! *love*


Here is an artice and picture from the San Diego Tribune.
A post from blogger Toni Reavis. ASU!!!!!!!!!

Coach John, me and my fellow Latvian friend Jeremy Zarins (super fast guys!)

Coming in second has lit a fire under my bootie and I will be back much stronger at my next race.

New PR!


  1. Very, very veeeery cool, girl! Wow, you challenged & came in 2nd to the famous Mary Akor. Holy shiz!
    AH, you are BA and you can compete with the BEST! 8> ))

  2. I MEANT 5/5 stars. 8>(
    Why did it only let me add 4????!! 8»(

  3. Nice blog. You did great. You acquired more knowledge that you’ll be able to use for your bright future in running. Good for you, Ariana.

  4. I was there and cheering for you from my balcony at the Holiday Inn on the Bay (mile 10ish before the hill). You looked great from the 6th floor!! Great job. What I wonder is if the gel would have changed the outcome? Do you think it would have given you the extra bit of zing you needed to get up the hill and surge at the end, or was it more a mental thing going on in your head?

  5. Thanks Steve!
    Thanks Dana for the cheering! You are awesome! I am sure the gel would have helped, if nothing else for the mental aspect, but who knows. Definitely can’t blame the race on that. 🙂 I should have been ok, but oh well, live and learn. 🙂 Thanks for reading Dana!

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