Hey! It’s so hard to believe it’s been 4 weeks since racing in Sweden! Just in case you thought I fell into the ocean or something, don’t worry – I’m here! I was so busy over the past month settling into Vancouver and residency and generally hitting reset on my life.
The race went really well. After Sweden it took me about 2 weeks to even feel like working out, another week to work up to full mileage, and this past week I’ve been feeling tired but more settled, so I’m hoping that I’m now back into the groove.
I raced as part of a team organized by my friend and co-resident Brian (the only guy in the photo above). Dani, Rachel and Tiff are various friends from different places, and we met up this morning in Stanley Park for the race.
I got there a bit early, picked up my bib, had some black coffee and relaxed in the sun while I waited for everyone else to get there. Before I left the house, I ate my typical pre-race oatmeal. Race start was at 9.30, so around 9.25 we lined up to start (I didn’t warm up… I need to get better about this). Dani and I planned to run together, Brian decided he’d stay with us depending on how he felt, and Rachel and Tiff did their own things.
At the beginning we were dodging a lot of people (also should have started further up). There was a bit of a downhill and I looked at the Garmin. We were running a 3:45/km pace, and I knew there was no way we were going to hold that, so I pulled back a bit. The race took us out along the Stanley Park seawall, which was open to regular foot traffic. Since it’s a Saturday in the summer in Vancouver, the trail was busy. I was so distracted going around people and checking out the water that the first mile flew by (7:33).
Some time during the second mile I started to feel it. My legs were good, but my lungs felt tight. I managed to chat a bit to Dani (we had just met one another) but other than that I was working on settling my breathing and looking around at other runners. Since the seawall was crowded it was hard to tell who we were racing against and who was just out for a run. Mile 2: 7:12
Heading into the third mile, I knew we were close to being done and I tried to use that to just stop worrying about my breathing and push through. I’m sure a warmup would have helped. Dani and I realized we’d lost Brian, and she kicked the pace up going into a hill before the last few turns. I hung on, but just barely. Mile 3: 7:09
We had been told ahead of time that the 5k course was actually a bit long – the full race distance was about 5.75k. According to my watch, I came through 5k in 22:20, which (I think) would be a PR for me: ). Basically at this point in the race I was just hanging on to Dani’s feet and waiting to be done. The last 0.5 mi were at a 7:18 pace.
At the end of the day it was barely a negative split, but I’ll take it. Dani and I went 2nd and 3rd female overall, first and second in our AG. Brian was right behind us (I think he was around 13 overall), and we didn’t stick around to see if our team won… it was off to a well-deserved brunch instead :).
Not a bad day! I’m looking forward to one more half IM this year (Challenge Penticton, I’m coming for ya!) and other than that really bringing the focus back to running.