First race of 2006! I was getting a bit worried, because the weather forecast was for -8deg, -13 with wind chill. At least there was sun in the forecast though, so it could have been a lot worse...like a blizzard. Well, it was a little cold and there was some wind, but it was a gorgeous, sunny day. I woke up at 7:00 and ate a blueberry bagel and half a mug of coffee. Tony dutifully woke up and drove me to the race site in Burlington. We found parking and I made a trip over to the set-up tent (and the porta-potties). I didn't see Cliff, so I started jogging along the lake to warm up. Tony stood by with a steaming cup of Timmies and took photos.
Cliff called me eventually and we followed the crowd of runners to the starting line. We were somewhat confused about where the starting point was...I didn't see the timing chip mats...but anyway, we just lined up where the crowd seemed to be forming.
Tony hung out on the sidelines and snuck some more pictures :)
The horn blew and away we went! I still didn't understand where the mats were, and I started Garmin about 30 sec too early. It was mis-reading my distance anyways...by the time we passed the 1 km mark, Garmin read only 700m. We started off running at about 7:00/km. We found the 2:30 pace bunny a few km into the race and followed him for awhile. I stuck to 10-and-1's for the first half of the race. Tony found us at 3km and snapped some more photos.
We soon passed the 2:30 pace bunny. I was hungry from the beginning of the race. I tried to eat a Clif bar about an hour before race start, but I only managed a few bites. I thought that there would be water stations every 3 km, so I was looking for one at about 9-10km because I really wanted to take my gel. To my dismay, I didn't see a water station until about 11 km. I was a little cranky and quite hungry as this point. Cliff wouldn't let me throw my paper cups to the side of the road like the other runners...he scolded me for littering...and ended up running with the cups until he could find a garbage can!
2nd half of the race now. I was still hungry, but I felt quite strong. We picked up the pace a bit. There was quite a bit of downhill as we ran towards the lakeshore and then down lakeshore. It occured to me at around the 10k point, which we got to at about 1:08, that I could potentially set a PR. My current PR is 2:12:56. I pondered that thought for a moment and then erased it from my mind. This was supposed to be a training run. Last weekend, I did my 20k LSD in 2:30. There was no way that I should be pushing for a PR. So, I held my pace and forced myself not to push.
We passed 16...17...18 km markers. This is usually where I fade. Today, I still felt strong. As we got closer and closer to the finish, I was surprised at how strong I felt. This was training...this was preparation for the BIG ONE on May 14! The final 50 meters, Cliff and I started sprinting. I thought he got to the finish line before me, but I actually came out 1 place ahead in the standings...hahaha...gun time 2:20, chip time 2:18:25. Not bad for a training run.
Tony was waiting for me at the finish to take more pictures :)
And here is the race map!
Thanks Cliff, for doing this training run with me. See how far we have come? Thanks Tony, once again, for all of your support. You're the best :) Next race: Mississauga Marathon!
Edit: Oh my, I forgot the mention the great CHILI after the race!! Tim Horton's chili, yum! It really hit the spot after that 21.1k!!!