This race reports starts waaay back last Tuesday when partway through the day I felt like I was getting a sore throat, NOOOOOOOOOOO!!! Well the sore throat stuck around, I ran Wed night, just an easy 8k, then took the rest of the week off, hoping that my body would heal up. The sore throat stuck around, and progressed a bit to a head cold with a bit of a cough. booo.
Saturday night, I drank some Neocitran, and went to bed early, hoping to sleep well and wake up feeling better. My adorable little alarm clock woke me at about 4:15 am (why did I even bother to set an alarm?). I fed Olivia and snuggled with her, taking lots of time to wake up. By 4:45 she was back in bed, and coffee was brewing. I had slept fairly well all things considered, but the damn cold was still there. I was stuffed up, coughing and just not 100%. I also did not have the best of (TMI) bathroom visits before the race. I had eaten jalapeno poppers at a friends the day before – yeah not the best of decisions! – so on top of my cough syrup, I also took some Kaopectate, and 2 Imodiums, oh and a couple Tylenol. My body was probably a bit confused by all the drugs in it’s system, and I just had to hope it knew what to do with each one. I ate breakfast, got dressed, and was ready to roll. My hubby, Tim, was also running the half, but just as a training run, as he had a few illnesses that had set back his running a bit.
We left the house at around 6:00 am. We drove down to the area where the race started and found a parking spot about a km away from the start. Once we got to the start area, we found the bathrooms, which were indoors – YAY! The race started and ended at the Grandstand of the Calgary Stampede, so there were great indoor facilities. As we were making our way to the start line, we ran into a friend who races ultra’s, he mentioned that he had signed up for the Full Marathon yesterday because his intended run in the mountains had been snowed out… so yeah, he was running a last minute marathon as a little training run… And of course I had to look up his marathon time afterwards just to stalk him – 3:19!!!?!! Maybe one day 😉 LOL, ok never, but a girl can dream.
We made our way down to the start area, Tim seeded himself further back for a training pace, and I found the 1:45 bunny and put myself a bit behind him.
KM’s 1-6 Through Bridgeland (Splits: 5:13, 5:09, 5:06, 5:20, 5:16, 5:11)
I haven’t run much in this area of the city, and didn’t really know where I was or which direction I was running most of the time. I was also feeling very sluggish and sleepy. I kept on willing my legs to move, and they were struggling to listen. As you can see from my splits that were all over the place. I had to stop and pull up one of my socks at an aid station in this section – my compression sock had fallen down… apparently I need a smaller size as compression wear should certainly NOT be able to fall down. I also drank some gatorade at this aid station, since I was slowing down enough to fix my sock.
KM’s 7-11 Down 11th Ave (Splits: 5:03, 5:11, 5:09, 5:18, 5:14)
This section felt a bit long. We ran down one street without turning. I was also eager to get past the 14k mark (2/3rds done!). I was just trying to focus on keeping my pace down close to 5:10. When I passed the 10k mark I was at 52:xx minutes, so on pace for a 1:50 finish! I was feeling sluggish, but my times were showing otherwise, so I was trying to keep my spirits up, and remain positive. I passed the halfway mark, and someone with a stopwatch gave us a split of 55:xx, again on pace for 1:50 ish.
KM’s 12-16 Onto Memorial Drive and past the turnaround towards HOME! (Splits: 5:06, 5:10, 5:14, 5:13, 5:11)
Things started to look up during this section. I knew we just had to get down onto Memorial, run West a bit, and then turn around, and it would be all downhill towards downtown and the finish. I saw my friend Theresa around km 14, and managed a big smile for her camera! Then it wasn’t much farther to the turnaround. Once I passed the turnaround I started to feel better, my mind was clearing, I was planning to kick it after the 16km mark, afterall, I can do ANYTHING for 5k, right? 🙂
KM’s 17-21.1 Down Memorial, across the river and to the FINISH! (Splits: 4:59, 4:55, 4:51, 4:47, 53 secs)
You can tell from my splits here, that I turned it on. It also makes me think that if it wasn’t for the drug induced fog I would have been able to run this race a bit faster. I am very happy that the fog lifted, and I could punch it at the end. The last 500m was starting to get tough, and the finish shoot was long, once I crossed the finish line I was very happy to be able to stop. As usual I totally forgot to pay any attention to the finish line photographers, and will most likely look like I’m dying in my pics… but like Lori and I always say, if you’re not running ugly, then you still have something in the tank!
I went through the food line, and then found a seat to wait for Tim in. I had considered walking back to the car to get my phone, but it seemed like a lot of work to walk the km there and back. Once Tim finished, he grabbed some food and we took off. We stopped on our way home at Nellies for some breakfast while my AMAZING MIL was at our house watching our children. It was a nice end to the morning, to sit and drink coffee and eat breakfast without any children 🙂
Overall, this felt like a mentally tough race. That is strange for me, I’m usually very mentally strong, and can also feel out paces, and know where I’m at. The cold caused me to doubt myself. Even when the numbers showed that I was running on pace for a 1:50 time, I felt sluggish, and therefore doubted my abilities to meet my goals. I spent a lot of time telling myself that I was running well, that I was trained well for this, and that I was smoking my race from just a month ago. I also thought about my friends around North America who had just completed races, or who were racing at the same time as I was, and used their efforts to carry me! So thanks to all my virtual and real running friends, you all know who you are, and I totally thought of you and used you to carry me forward today!!