I’m so glad I picked Ottawa as the first place for me to race. Even though it was far away, even though I drove a total of 11 hours in the course of 72 hours, it was worth it. On Saturday morning (race day!) I was convinced that I would just stay in, have a relaxing day, write some goodbye cards for people at work and some favourite customers — and that was 7am. By 7:30am, I was bored. Michelle had gone to work and I was wandering around the apartment feeling restless. So I thought “I will walk to Rideau.” And it was a beautiful walk
That picture was about half way there… in flip flops… in the heat… and a half hour into my walk. At about 8:10 I realized that I probably had bitten off more than I could chew in terms of walking to the Rideau Centre.
At 8:30 I had a blister.
At 8:50 I got a coffee, and immediately decided after visiting the Pfizer Race Expo I was taking a cab ride home. I had to race that night after all!
They had a lot of interesting stuff at the Pfizer Expo. Here are a few of my favourites.
I purchased these two headbands from One More Mile. Mainly because I thought they were funny but also functional.
I loved this sign. I believe its from rungirlrun — the text is as follows:
Whether you’re 16 or 67, the desire to hit the road is not easily explained to those who do not run — We understand the pull of the road, the joy of losing yourself in the solitude of a good long distance run, or the sisterhood you experience when you find that great running partner — Running is more than a feat of athleticism, it is therapeutic. There is an unexpected exhilaration that we experience having challenged our personal limitations… Finally proving to ourselves that we can indeed make it to the finish line. Whether you are here to win, or here to experience a little more of who you are, we salute you.
I also got this bumper sticker/magnet which now sits on the back of my car (which soon won’t be my car as I’m moving cross country without little jellybean)
After I cabbed back (I actually did, obviously because my feet were going to kill) and picked up michelle from work — it was 2:30pm, time to prepare my pre-race bagel!
Note my attractive peanut butter face.
It was a delicious bagel and a good plan too. At the race itself, I never felt low on energy, just low on water! I didn’t bring a water bottle because I’ve never ran with my water pack and I figured they’d have multiple water spots on the course (okay, I know it was only 5km, but I figured they would have two at least, like the half and marathon where they had one every 2.5 km). So especially when we ended up having to walk home, I was sorely lacking in the water department. However, the most fabulous tidbit of information I learned over the weekend (which helped me immensely in the coming week at work when my shoe got soaked was a) bring a spare pair of shoes, just in case and b) if you don’t bring a spare pair of shoes, ensure that you have plenty of newspaper on hand to soak up the inevitable thunderstorm that drowns your shoes the day before your race.
I was shocked they were dry in time to run.
Michelle and I took plenty of pictures pre-race style in her apartment.
I actually received my running clothes I’m wearing as a gift from my parents, and I ran my best pre-race time in them. I think I was really worn out because I had run a lot the past week instead of easing off training. Lesson learned. Anyways, Michelle and I made our way by bus to the race. The bus driver was joking about writing a one beside the five on my bib and seeing if I’d have to run 15km. I was too concerned with whether or not this was a real possibility to think it was funny. Oh, I was also trying not to be carsick. I do that on buses.
Once I saw the 2km finishing up, the adrenaline started pumping! Everyone was doing something, all 9598 other people in our race were stretching or running or talking to themselves or jogging or turning in circles. I’m really glad I chose to run my first race with one of my best friends because I had someone to talk to and wasn’t just staring at the super fit elite runners going WHAT ON EARTH AM I DOING HERE!?
The best part was that someone, somewhere, had the experience to use an Iphone to take a picture for us.
And then we raced! We did 36:22.6 — which was not bad considering the lack of water but also the multitudes of heat (it was still 25 degrees outside when we ran, not including humidity). I probably would have taken the huge amount of rain over the heat to run in, to be honest (minus the lightning and dangerous stuff). I came 4802 out of 9600 total, 249/373 in my age group (F 20-24), and had a ton of fun.
I also collapsed after the additional 2.3 km walk home.
The medal was awesome, the race was awesome, the people were awesome, and the celebrations were awesome (especially when my boss let me wear my medal all around work)!
My next race is June 24 in Vancouver and I’m looking forward to it! Thanks for sharing in my adventure with me 🙂