Sunday, February 10, 2008

Sweet Success!

This morning the weather channel said -26...needless to say I was less than excited to get out there and run 21.1km as hard as I could. But today was the day, weather or not we were determined to have our race. The name of the race was not the "mild winter day" half marathon after-all.
We bundled up and covered as much skin as possible, but even with the layers, it was freakin cold!

I started with a good pace. I had a goal time in mind and I knew that the conditions may keep me from it, but I was determined to run my best race. There were a three girls that took off a lot faster but I didn't care, I was more concerned with my own race than where I placed.
I ran a steady pace the first 10km and was feeling really good other than the ice covering my face, eyelashes etc. I had to take my glasses off because I could no longer see through the frost, and I was wondering how long until the eyelashes were so thick that I was completely blinded. Another girl came up along side me and I expected her to pass, but instead we fell into a rhythm and began running stride for stride. We ran together to the turn around and I was able to see that the lead girl was about a mile ahead but the 2nd and 3rd females were within a kilometer of us.
After the turnaround I picked up the pace a bit and caught up to a guy who was breathing really loud and tried to stick with me. I couldn't stand his panting so I picked up the pace a bit more and dropped him. Soon after I heard footsteps and my running partner was back. I also now had the 3rd place female in sight and was gaining on her. I could also see the 2nd place female about 200m ahead of her. I probably pushed my pace a bit too much at this point because by 18km I was hurtin. My partner pushed the pace again and I tucked in behind her for a bit but had to back off and let her go for fear of blowing up completely. I held on to 13km/hr and ran about 100m back. It was neat to see that the 4 of us were running in a pace line, about 100m apart from one another.
When we hit 20km everyone seemed to pick up the pace. The girl that had been running with me moved into 3rd and was gaining on 2nd. I knew I didn't have another gear left so I just tried to hang on. I looked at my watch and knew I was going to make it in under 1:40, I also saw that I was running 14.5km/hr and losing ground.
As we approached Eau Claire the route crossed over into Prince's Island park where the pathway was replaced by slippery packed snow and ice. The girls seemed to surge again and I really had nothing left. I just kept pushing as hard as I could to the finish. I was so elated to see the clock under 38mins. My chip time was 36:56- well under my 1:40 goal!
I was so happy. I came 5th female, but the placing did not matter. Running with those girls gave me the competitive drive to push myself to run as hard as I could. I have no doubt that chasing them down was what helped me have such an amazing race.
As it turns out, the girl I was running with finished 3rd and qualified for NY Marathon which was her goal. She was so happy at the end she was in tears...she hugged me and thanked me for "pacing her" lol. It felt good to share in such a big moment with a complete stranger!
Now what I haven't mentioned is that my man D BLEW the field away with a 1:19:55 run. A full 6mins ahead of second place.
We were both so happy to have a great day. All of our hard work these past months is paying off. There isn't a lot of glory or glamour in our daily grind of basement training sessions, so it is nice to see some positive results. It is also a good sign that we have the potential to race well in Boston in 2 months.
I feel like I have had a major breakthrough in my training and now in my racing. I know that I can push myself at a very high level for that distance. I know that I have more speed than I used to, and my endurance is coming along too.
My ave HR was 167...very high! But as we move into the longer endurance training, it will come.

FEBRUARY 10, 2008


Place Race# Name City Guntime Chiptime Pace
===== ====== ========================= ================ ========== ========== =====
1 3776 Darin HUNTER Calgary AB 1:19:55.80 1:19:55.80 3:48
2 3867 Mike PASCOE Calgary AB 1:26:17.00 1:26:17.00 4:06
3 3718 Colin FEASBY Calgary AB 1:28:49.20 1:28:49.20 4:13
4 3759 Stephen HASTINGS Calgary AB 1:29:31.40 1:29:31.40 4:15
5 3618 Hugo BATTEKE Calgary AB 1:32:03.30 1:32:03.30 4:22
Place Race# Name City Guntime Chiptime Pace
===== ====== ========================= ================ ========== ========== =====
1 3708 Kari ELLIOT Calgary AB 1:30:41.10 1:30:41.10 4:18
2 3960 Somer WILSON Calgary AB 1:36:00.20 1:36:00.20 4:33
3 3924 Mardi SYRNYK Revelstoke BC 1:36:13.60 1:36:13.60 4:34
4 3407 Debbie REED 1:36:34.10 1:36:34.10 4:35
5 3844 Amber Dawn MORRIS Calgary AB 1:36:56.40 1:36:56.40 4:36

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