I signed up for the Bay Bridge 4 Miler about a month ago. Then I got the flu. I received the race packet in the mail on a day I could barely walk around my house. How am I supposed to run 4 miles? I decided to play it by ear and see how I felt. I wasn’t going to run if I was still sick or didn’t feel up to it. I probably wouldn’t have run if I hadn’t signed up, and my brother wasn’t.
The Bay Bridge 4 Miler isn’t just a random 4-mile race, but it gives you the unique opportunity to run from San Diego into Coronado. It has about 250 feet of elevation gain to get over.
You can see Strava here.
Before the Bay Bridge 4 Miler:
I had started running the Tuesday before and by that Friday, I decided I had enough energy to race the Bay Bridge 4 Miler. I knew it wouldn’t be fast and that it would probably also hurt, but I had paid the race entry, so I figured I might as well. The only thing really preventing me was “running slow” but no one cares. I headed down to San Diego the Saturday before and made it to my brother’s house around 4 pm.
The morning of the Bay Bridge 4 Miler was uneventful. We got to the race started around 6:30. Since it was in downtown San Diego, we weren’t quite sure of the parking situation. Looking back, I would probably park in Coronado and take the bus to the start in San Diego. We waited about an hour for the ferry afterward (but it was nice). I did about a 3-mile warmup and then headed to the start.
The Bay Bridge 4 Miler Race:
I don’t think I’ve ever done a more congested start. It took a good minute to start the race, and people were clearly in the wrong spot. Walkers upfront, small children, starting next to elites, etc. My only goal was to start and finish, so I wasn’t really that concerned. If any race needs corrals, it’s that one.
The first mile went up a small hill but was flat for the most part. I thought I might be able to do it under 7:30 pace, depending on how I felt. I crossed the first mile in 7:23 and was content with that. I didn’t feel great, and I wondered how I would run over the Coronado Bridge.
The next mile climbs up the Coronado Bridge. It’s steep, and you gain about 200 feet that mile. It’s challenging, and I definitely felt winded. Coming back from the flu, I am most tired going upstairs and uphill. As we climbed, my lungs did not feel great. I told myself I could walk if I needed to…somehow, I did not need to. I crossed the second mile of the Bay Bridge 4 Miler at 8:15.
What goes up must come down, and the third mile went back down. I tried to push it, but I didn’t have the energy I wanted. I just kind of chugged along. A few people passed me, but there wasn’t a lot of note. I ran the third mile at 6:55, but it was all downhill.
The last mile was flat, and I was definitely feeling it. I was tired and I reminisced on the finish of the Crown City Classic 12k last summer. I told myself not to stop and walk, but it took almost all of my energy not to do. After going downhill, flat felt challenging. I wanted to be under 30 minutes and I knew it would be close. I pushed as hard as I could and crossed the Bay Bridge 4 Miler in 29:50.
Bay Bridge 4 Miler Thoughts:
This is the slowest four miler I’ve done by a lot, but I’m happy with my effort. The flu took it from me, and I know my lungs are not where I want to be. I’m proud of lining up and looking forward to rebuilding fitness.
You can see more race results here.
Questions for you:
Have you done the Bay Bridge 4 Miler?
Have you had the flu?