…can I get an eff yeah?

Hi!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Time for some proper race recap action.

ARE YOU WITH ME?

SO. Saturday I got to mostly sit on my butt because I did my shake out run on Friday night, and this glorious race allows you to pick up your race kit on RACE DAY. Unheard of. And awesome.

Josh and my Dad were going to a BBQ store (smoke meat all day) and I was all like, “yeah have fun with that I’ll be here on the couch. Unless there’s somewhere for me to shop…” And Josh goes “Vaughan Mills.” And I’m immediately like “LULULEMON OUTLET LET’S GO.”  It’s not actually an outlet, but it has a bigass sale section like no other Lulu. I got three tank tops (two Cool Racerbacks and one Heart Opener Tank) on sale (plus my trainer discount) and I was a happy nugget.

I made a huge batch of pasta with chicken on Friday night (right after my tune up with the chiro at work!) and basically just ate it for every meal on Saturday…balanced out with Halloween candy of course. What like vegetables would have made for more efficient race fuel? Pfffft.

Race Day, let’s break it down.

Wake up call was a brutal 4:30am. Luckily, Daylight Savings was ending, so we got to turn the clocks back an hour. So it was really more like 5:30am. Not bad.

I had to be at the start line by 7am in order to get my kit, even though the race didn’t start until 8:15am.  This is not my style.  I am an arrive, jump into my corral 1 minute before (or after…) the gun goes off, and get moving kinda girl. It was lovely that we had an indoor area to wait, because it was FREEZING. Christina and I did however spend a good 25 minutes before the race standing in a port a potty line freezing our buns off. We also got to hang out with Krysten at the start (which was awesome) as she geared up for her 2nd (and very successful!) FULL marathon. This girl is amazing.

Gear: I used the trusty RW What To Wear Tool (seriously that shiz is bomb), and I opted for crops, a tank, and a thicker lulu long sleeve that had a high neck, a hood, and built in mittens. I also wore a headband for my ears. I remembered from this race last year that there was a section of legit trail/gravel that slowed me way down because of the VFFs I had worn; which are made for road running. This year I opted for my trail VFFs (Spyridons), and man I was SO GLAD I DID.  I was a bit nervous because I hadn’t run in them for more than 8k. I wore them with my trusty Injinji toe socks to stop blisters. I also wore my CamelBak, like always, but I think I could have ditched it. I am going to start working towards that. Then I obvs had my Garmin 305 on my wrist. This time I made sure to shut off the auto pause to prevent any timing mishaps like at Scotia.

Washed a bunch of lulu so I could pick my race outfit, but instead these two took a nap in the warm laundry.

Fuel: The morning of the race I had some clean pancakes with raspberries. Since that was 3 hours before the race…I also may or may not have eaten an entire pack of Sharkies before the race started. Fruit snacks disguised as nutrition, FTW. During the race I could only muster up the energy to eat 1.5 gels. I had one around 6k, and half of one around….I have no idea. Whenever the volunteers were handing out fuel. Mine was chocolate and I took two bites (bites because it was half frozen), and almost tossed my cookies, so I threw it away. The flavour wasn’t bad, I just wasn’t into it.

Strategy: Phaedra sent me a race strategy last week, and the plan was to stick with the 1:50 pace bunny until 5k at least, blow down the hills as fast as I wanted (I requested permission for that hahah) and gradually increase from 5:13kms to 5:10kms to 5:08kms. That went a little out the window…hahaha #sorrycoach. There were so many people UP IN MY GRILLS I just had to get AWAY. Seriously, the start was so congested. Like my nasal cavity. (#netipotFTW) ANYWAY. I really like to hit negative splits these days, but with the first half containing a solid 6k of downhill, I knew that was unlikely, but I wanted to keep it as even as possible. Nothing too extreme.

The Race: Christina and I hopped in with the 1:50 pace bunny 2 seconds before the gun went off. The first 5k were fine, just really hectic at the start, like I mentioned; and we lost the pace bunny pretty quickly. I started to really focus on my breathing here as my body got warmed up. I spent a SOLID two hours over the last few days reading all about side stitches. I had gone for a run on Monday and it was 5k of POOP (even after I thought I had conquered this issue at Scotia). I had a BRUTAL stabbing pain in my side and legit had to walk home. Talk about ego boosting. In all my research, I learned some SOLID TIPS that seriously knocked any signs of stitches out of the water. KNOCKED ‘EM. SEE YA. I focused on sticking my belly out like a prego lady every time I inhaled, and I tried to exhale when my left foot hit the ground (the opposite side of where I usually get my stitches– this is apparently the rule). The deep belly breathing really worked– the sticking out of the gut was key though, hahah.

At 5k we started the sweet gift of a 6km gradual descent. I know that I have strong quads that can take a beating, so I picked up the pace here, but at the same time I didn’t want to throw my body into shock once we hit any signs of UP hills…or even just flat terrain! So I tried to be smart.  This is where I let Christina go ahead of me– I felt fine, but I knew I had to run efficiently and not let the energy of anyone else take over my race.

The next bit was mostly a blur– I remember thinking to myself “oh I should pay attention to my 10k split.” I looked down at my watch and I was coming up on 13k. HAHAH what an idiot. Pleasant surprise though! It was like 3 free kms! There was a bit of up and down hill action going on here, up until I want to say…16k? Where we hit a city pathway and it was nice and flat. But super boring. And a little mean, because it was an out and back section of the course. This is where I tapped into my zone– cranked my music and just listened to my body. I didn’t even need to pay much attention to my watch. I could feel what was the right pace. It hurt a little, that’s for sure. My lungs were burning, but my legs felt strong. The main thing that kept me going was the thought that I had no other choice. I had no other option but to hit my goal. I had told FAR too many people about it, and GOOD GRIEF, I was NOT going to tell them I failed. I work with a whole bunch of runners, and was going to a baby shower with them later that day. HELL NO was I going to show up and tell them I didn’t do it. I had no choice but to hold my pace. None. No other option. This is seriously what carried me through. (That and Q being like…”over 4 minutes? That’s a lot of time to shave…” HAH I KNOWWWW.)

Right around 20k, another runner came up on my right side and told me I was doing great and told me to “rock it out.” I was like “GOOD IDEA.” I tried really, really hard not to puke and motored it UP THAT HILL to the finish line. When I saw the clock with the gun time still said 1:49:xx, I finally believed I had pulled it off.

I was very surprised to cross the finish line and find Christina directly in front of me getting her medal! She was likely in eyesight the entire time but I was clearly in my own little world.

After Christina cleaned up her wounds (poor thing), we went and checked the official times posted up on the boards. Christina came in at 1:48:20, and I came in at 1:48:46!!!!!  (Almost a 6 minute PR…the previous one, I set two weeks ago at Scotia– 1:54:32).

The first thing I did was text Phaedra and my sisters a picture of my Garmin and the caption “CAN I GET AN EFF YEAH?”  (…only maybe not the censored version..). Phaedra immediately followed up with a frantic EFF YEAH phone call, hahah. I blew it through a LOT of my training, and she still put up with me. I was so happy to make her proud. Seriously, I owed her that PR!

Take that 1:49:59. I don’t need you.

I am basically still in shock. I never thought I would see a FOUR!

In terms of the negative split thing, even with the downhills in the start, I did pretty well! My first half (10.5k) was 53:26, and my second half (10.6k) was 55:20. Pretty decent if you ask me!

I woke up this morning feeling a tiny bit tight in the calves, but mostly fine. I texted Phaedra and it went like this:

GOOD GRIEF

I can’t. wait. for the 2014 race season!

Now…if you are still reading, you get a GOLD STAR.

Long story short, best race day ever.

Did you race this weekend? 

Danielle

xo

 

 

Comments

  1. Congrats!!

  2. Wow wow wow! Amazing job yesterday, I loved reading this recap! I ran that race last year and it was my first half and the part where you get to the lake and turn left towards Burlington instead of right towards the finish line nearly killed me mentally. Way to stay strong and kill it with a PR!!!

    • Aw thank you!!! I was lucky I had done this race last year too and was mentally prepared for it this time!

  3. That’s amazing!! six minutes off a two week-old PR = What an achievement!

    So that’s how to get Lulu on sale! It never seems to be any cheaper at our local store.

    • Thank you!!!!

      And here’s another little secret….the “we made too much section” online gets updated every Thursday!

  4. AH-MA-ZING! Congrats!

    I ran the 5k the day before and I am feeling really inspired to do this half again.

  5. “Over 4 minutes”????
    Sheeeeeed…Takes 19 minutes just to get my bib right.

    • Don’t forget the 35 gels pinned ever so delicately inside your SHORTS. 4+ minutes per gel at LEAST.

  6. YEAH!!! I was so freaking happy for you on Sunday. Seriously. And to think you dogged it in your training!! You definitely have that 1:45 in you.

    • Weeeeee!!! This boggles my mind entirely, just so you know.

      ….I’M DOING IT. I now know the real secret to successful training is to tell the entire world what you plan to do. HAH, kidding.

  7. that’s awesome and absolutely hilarious! I never follow a plan (probably a bad idea) and just end up winging it hoping for the best 🙂

  8. you are the business.
    come on.
    I’m so happy you killed it and wrote this novel of a recap- they help me know what I might be getting into next year!
    Also, Vaughan Mills is approx. 3 mins from my house. Maybe I cried a little that I wasn’t in the country this weekend.

  9. Congratulations!!!

    On a side note, when you and Christina were planning to do your photoshoot, do you remember the name of the photographer you were going with? I’m looking to set one up and am looking for a reputable photographer in the gta. Figured you would know of one!