Tag Archives: 10k

Chocolate Race Recap

13 May

The day of the Chocolate Race started early. Mark hopped on his bike to ride to St Catherines and left shortly after six. His ride was supposed to take him just over two hours. I resolved to leave shortly after seven which would put me in St Catherines around the same time Mark was expected to arrive. The morning was exceptionally windy. I was praying that the wind would die down at the start line. The race started at 10 which meant I had to carefully plan out my eating schedule. I ate half of a banana around 6:30 and prepared a bagel with peanut butter and jam which I would eat around 8.

I packed all my stuff and jumped in the car. This was my first drive by myself down the 403. Thankfully, it was Sunday morning and there wasn’t too much traffic. I arrived at the expo shortly after eight and picked mine and Mark’s race kits and waited. And waited. And waited. The time was now 9:15 and Mark was still nowhere to be found. He hadn’t called or texted which meant he was still on the road. I was starting to get anxious. I really did not want him to miss the race. I waited as long as I could. At 9:43 I started to walk towards the start line. I left his race kit in the car and texted him the directions to find the car. Hopefully he would get there in time. As fate would have it, as I walked towards the start line, I decided to take one last look behind me. There he was. A cyclist all in black with a white helmet. I dashed towards him and pointed to turn around. I directed him to the car. Mark quickly got changed while I placed his bike in the car. It was a made dash. When he was all ready we ran back to the start. With four minutes to spare, we made it! Mark made his way to the front while I stayed behind him a few rows. I was expecting to do well but I didn’t want to be at the front.

The gun went off and I started passing people like it was nobody’s business. The terrain was half trail and half road with minor inclinations. We ran along the Lake Ontario with a head wind.¬† This was no minor head wind. They were wind gusts of over 30km/hr. I was not expecting stellar results at that point. But, I stayed positive. No one was passing me and I was gaining on the person ahead of me. Thankfully at the turn around, the wind was now at my back. I gained speed and I felt like I was flying. I definitely flew through the finish line. I did not have a personal best but I finished 2nd in my age category and 15th overall! My time was 50min and 44seconds.

DSC01006Pink champagne at the finish line. I really could have had a few more glasses to keep me warm (it was freezing!)

As we waited for the award ceremony, we had chocolate croissants and truffles. Everything was so rich and delicious. I was surprised to find out that I finished 2nd. I wasn’t expecting to top my age group. Especially in this race as the age group was between 20 and 29. But we also had to wait for medals because Mark won his first race. He left everyone behind him in his dust. We both could not believe his incredible race.

DSC01011Here we are with our finisher’s medals and our winner’s medals.

Thankfully Mark did not want to ride his bike back home so he drove and I was able to relax in the passenger’s seat. Of course, training really paid off. But I think for my next race I’m going for another pedicure and will definitely stick to homemade pizza for supper. This might be the beginning of a great tradition.

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Toronto Yonge Street 10k Race Recap

25 Apr

On Sunday I ran the very fast and crowded Toronto Yonge Street 10k. I had no idea what to expect. I don’t know Toronto very well so I did not go into this race with high expectations. The more was bright and sunny but brisk. The expected high for the day was 7C so at the start line I think the temperature was hovering only around 2C. Needless to say, I was cold. Luckily the body heat of the other races around me at the start line was enough to keep me warm.

This was the first race I had ever run while listening to my iPod. I’m in the middle of reading a really good book (The Song of Achilles) and, by chance, I was able to find an audiobook copy. The Song of Achilles is about the relationship between Achilles and Patroclus and the Trojan War. As the starting gun went off, the narrator of the book began the telling of the first attack on the Trojans by the Greeks. It was the perfect. I felt like a Greek warrior incarnate. I know, how nerdy am I? But that push was just enough to get me through those 10 kilometres in 49 minutes.

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The course was mostly downhill. Unfortunately there were not many cheering crowds/stations but there were three bands at different points along the course that were playing music. All three bands sounded awesome and it was a great momentary distraction.

I managed a negative split which is strange because I didn’t feel as strong in the second half of the race but I was obviously wrong. The overall organization during and after the race was great. There was a large finishing expo with lots of food, extra t-shirts or hats, and live music.

Winter running and race schedule

24 Jan

I’ve finally made a plan for the next six weeks for the half marathon. The plan includes lots of running but also a mix of swimming, biking, and strength training. I need to gain a base aerobic capacity when I start training 100% for the half ironman.

Despite a cold snap, I have not dropped a run all week. Except for this morning. In earnest, I tried to get out there. Heck, I even ran around the block but it was just too much. I had my foot warmers, 4 layers of tops, 2 layers of pants, hat, mitts and a scarf but the wind was just too cold on my face. I should have warn a balaclava!

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Love these foot warmers! They work so well!

Anyway, I’m not letting that get me down. I did a little living room workout instead. I’m also glad to report that I feel like a runner again. I’m no longer struggling with/against myself when I run. My body is letting me run and I no longer feel stiff. That was a beautiful realization last night!

Mark and I sincerely miss Ottawa but, damn, living in the GTA is convenient! Everything is so close. It’s allowing me to participate in so many races this winter and spring!

March 3: Chilly Half Marathon

April 14: Georgetown 5k
April 21: Yonge St. 10k

May 18: Early Bird Triathlon (ok, this one is in Ottawa but Mark and I are doing this race again because we had so much fun last year and we’re using it as a vacation too!)

June 1: Moon in June 10k (a race at night – cool!)

July 7: Peterborough half – tri (half ironman, but not Ironman brand)

So that is one half of the year’s races. After¬† a busy few months, we’ll see how I feel about summer/fall races. I’ll be preparing for another marathon so I might just take it easy and concentrate of training.