Tuesday, October 18, 2016

I'm a Fool

A fool in training at least! After much thought and planning I have signed up to run my second half-marathon next spring, The Sunshine Coast April Fool’s Run.

The planning part comes from the fact that this race is on the other side of the country on April 2nd 2017. Starting in Gibsons BC (home of the Beachcombers) it finishes in Sechelt (home of my in-laws). Not only do I need to train throughout the winter, I also have to travel to BC and deal with a 4 hour time zone difference. Of course the race does not coincide with our March break. While I’m sure Liam would love to miss an extra week of school, we decided that he and Hilary would be staying home. I asked my Mom if she would like to travel with me, heading to BC the weekend before the race. We are going to spend several days touring Victoria and Nanaimo while we acclimatize to the change in time and then head to Sechelt a few days before the race.

This looks like an absolutely beautiful course to run. Most of it is along small highways through the forest, with the water not too far off in the distance. It also has a net drop in elevation, but a couple of very steep looking hills thrown in. I have a lot of hill training in my future.

This will be my second half marathon. My training plan is very similar to what I did last year, with more focus on hills and speed training. I have a nice easy plan of 24 weeks to allow myself to build up a really good base of running before I start adding a lot of distance. My main concern is going to be the weather for January-March. Worst case scenario I end up at the indoor track or on a treadmill at the gym a few times a week.

While my Mom was visiting recently and we were talking about the race, she made the comment “I could probably walk 21k”. So I said “Why don’t you?” and within days she had made up her mind and registered to walk her first half marathon! She currently walks nearly 5k every day, so she has her own training plan and is going to start building up her mileage too.

Week 1 of training was technically last week and I blew it. Mom was here visiting, we went away for the weekend and life just happened.  That is another reason I planned on 24 weeks of training, so that if I do lose 1 or 2, it's not going to hurt me in the long run (pun intended).

Now I am officially a F.I.T. - a Fool in Training!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Run for the Cure

I had signed up for this 5k run months ago, as it is one that I do every year. This year fell on the day after my Mom arrived for her annual fall visit, so I talked it over with her and signed her up too! She walks almost 5k every day, so this was no problem for her to do. The down side was the weather…. Rain, rain and more rain. We had umbrellas with us during the speeches and warm up, but luckily the route went right past the car so we were able to ditch them as they were getting heavy and awkward. And really, once you’re wet, you’re wet… an umbrella isn’t going to make it any better.

I had a lot of fun walking with Mom. She has never participated in this kind of event and loved the crowds and the people cheering us on and the novelty of walking down the middle of the road. We finished in exactly one hour, got our free fruit and headed out to get coffee and dry clothes.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Zombie Run

I love Zombies! I like them on TV, in movies and even in books. I especially liked them in real life, chasing me down a deep, dark forest trail. Except the little kid zombie who was hiding in the leaves and leapt out me. I didn’t really like him since he made me scream like a terrified two year old!

By no means was this a “run”. Sure, some spunky people probably ran the whole thing, but not me. The trail was steep with loose gravel and uneven terrain. I can barely manage to walk across my living room without tripping, so I wasn’t going to take any chances. There were periods of running as I dodged and wove my way around the zombies who were trying to steal my “lives” (we each had 3 flags on a belt that the zombies tried to pull off). Alas, my dodging and weaving didn’t do me much good as I was out of lives before the halfway point. After that I became the blocker for our group, distracting zombies while everyone else slipped by.

It was a great time made more fun by running with friends. The downside of the day was when one friend twisted her ankle and spent the rest of the race in the first aid tent with an ice pack. To make it even worse, she didn’t just turn her ankle, she actually broke off a small piece of bone. An apocalypse is a dangerous thing.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Maritime Race Weekend

This is such a fun event! Spanning 2 days, you end up with 3 amazing medals at the end of it.

Friday night is a sunset 5k that has most people dressing up in pirate related costumes. Last year I wore a black shirt with a pirate emblem on it. This year I got talked into going ALL OUT! It started innocently enough with a group of us getting together to make matching pink and black tutus. I had worn a tutu once before in a run, so I figured that it was an easy addition to last year’s black shirt and I would be all set. Then I came home one evening to find Jody trying on corsets in my living room for her costume. And it just so happened that she had a second one that would be perfect for me to wear. So I ended up running a 5k in a sports bra and corset (tightly laced at that) and a tutu.

The next morning we headed back out to Eastern Passage for the sunrise portion of things. Some of us were running the 5k and some were running the 10k. It was great to finish before the 10k people to be able to cheer them across the finish line.

I've made such great friends through running this year.  Last year I went to all the races on my own, standing around by myself.  This year, I'm surrounded by friends at almost every event!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Runway Lung Run

I love the Lung Run Runway Run. When else would you have the opportunity to run up and down a runway, with the sounds of planes taking off around you? If it wasn’t for the other hundreds of runners, you could almost pretend you were in a scene of a movie!

Luckily this year the weather was great (it poured rain and was freezing last year). This was my first of 4 planned 5k runs for September, and came just after I really got back into running after a summer of not much running time. I didn’t have any great expectations for pace or finish time, but I was happy with the amount of running versus walking that I was able to do.

I hope they continue to hold this race every year as it is on that I look forward too.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Not Since Moses

It was the second weekend in a row that I had to wake up at 4:30 and be out the door by 5:00. I am not a morning person, so this did not sit well with me. At least this time I was doing it for something fun and with some great people.

Fueled on coffee and bagels, we managed the 2 hour drive in the dark and got to the parking area with plenty of time to spare for a potty break and to line up for the bus to the finish line. We even had time to take a picture with the Bagpiper.

The is run was everything I thought it was going to be. Fun, hard and muddy. My only goal for the day was to not fall. I came close many, many times, but I kept my balance and stayed upright, even when the mud was up to my ankle and suctioned off my shoe. I kept going in my socks for about 10 minutes until I found a stream that I could wash enough mud off to put the shoes back on.

It was an absolutely perfect day. The sky was perfect, it wasn’t too hot and we were surrounded by beauty.  The course was a 5k out and back, and we finished long before the tide came in. 

Running on the ocean floor is something everyone should try at least once.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Ocean Breeze Trail Run 5K

This was the 4th year for the Ocean Breeze Trail Run. This race will always be near and dear to my heart – it’s the first 5k that I ever ran and started me on my running journey and it’s sponsored by Liam’s school.

Held at the beautiful Lawrencetown Beach, the 5k route follows the Atlantic trails inland. Which means that you quickly lose the fresh ocean breeze and move onto the unshaded path. It’s a great spot to run; crushed gravel trail, mainly flat, beautiful views... it’s just HOT. I thought that the year of the near-hurricane conditions was the worst weather, but I’ve decided I hate running in the heat even more. This year they had 2 water stations set up – at the 2.5K turn around and again at the 4K mark. I don’t think I would have managed the last kilometer if there hadn’t been cold water there for me to dump on my head.

This year I ran it with my friend Nicole. This was her first 5K. She tore her ACL a couple of years ago and was waiting for a surgery date to have it replace (which happened out of the blue 3 days after the run!). We trained together once a week for the past couple of months. She did great! She had a sexy looking knee brace and was able to run pain free once we figured out her tight calf muscle issues. If anything, my speed held her back. But we started together and finished together in 48:28 minutes. Not my best time, but I was very pleased with it given the heat.