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Sunday, October 17, 2010


Not the sub-5 I was aiming for, but it's still a personal best and I'll take it! Of course, Mr. Garmin disagrees with the "official" time (off by 3 minutes) but even 5:21 is still over 20 minutes faster than the marathon I ran in May.

Got up at the crack of stupid, as did Cathy and her family! Felt a little sorry for her one teenager, as this is normally his sleep-in day, but we all got over it. Drove into the city, after my usual breakfast of bagel, nutella and banana. Topped off with milk and some coffee and I was ready to roll. Got to Mel Lastman square nice and early, in time to watch the Half group head off on their race. Then we hung out inside (to keep warm) before I loaded my gear in the storage truck, and queued up to run. I'll post pictures later, as Cathy took some, while here hubs took pictures with mine. Cathy was blown away by all the "throw-away" clothes lying around. I tried to explain the concept, but since I am always hot, I didn't have anything to throw away. The temperature was forecast to be +15, so I was running in a tank and shorts today. Who knew the one thing that I would really need was OCTOBER! But more about that later...

We took off, and so my third marathon began. I tried to hold back, but as usual started a little fast, averaging a pace of anywhere from 6:36 to 7:00. I did really well, even reaching the halfway mark at another PB (clock said 2:32)...this is where I fell apart a little. I wasn't in pain, but I did have some trouble breathing in some areas and had to pull out the inhaler a couple of times. Not sure if it was the humidity or what, but that slowed me down a bit.

Then we hit Lakeshore...I will say that this marathon is actually quite beautiful, as we ran down Yonge Street and through some of the older neighbourhoods before reaching Lakeshore. That went on FOR FREAKING FOR.EVER!! With a head-wind, to boot. I think we ran Lakeshore for about 10 km and then turned around to run back. This was the only point to see other runners, but for the most part, this was a point to point race. After finally turning around at the 30km mark, I let the mental part get the better of me, as I realized I still had 12 km to go...that took some wind out of my sails. I tried not to look at a clock, or my Garmin, but I wasn't running nearly as fast as before. By this point, I was just plugging away at this point, even resorting to counting backwards from 300 to try and take my mind off the distance.

The crowds for the marathon were great, as people stood and clapped and cheered your name (on the bib) as you ran past. That helped too...and awesome volunteers and course marshalls everywhere, all checking that you were doing all right. I actually witnessed someone "hit the wall", and thought we were going to have to call medical, but he recovered rather quickly. Finally hit the 40km mark, and phone Cathy to tell her I was heading in. Also passed a clock at this point, and realized that I wasn't going to be sub-5, but still knew that I was much faster than the Calgary marathon in May. We did have a wee bit of a hill to run up into Queen's Park, which I didn't enjoy, along with the constant chorus of "you're almost there". Saw Cathy and her son, holding up their "go, Carol, go" signs and cheering me on. That pushed me across the finish line (even though Mr. Garmin had already said I was done about 200 meters previously) with a smile on my face, and spring in my step. Okay, maybe not a spring, but I was moving better than I thought.

After a quick rest and a stretch, we walked back to the car, with me moving way better than expected, and returned to the house to eat COW! Yummo!!! Cathy's hubs is a good BBQer!!! Not feeling too bad, but I am looking forward to a quiet day tomorrow! Realized that I should have worn some sunscreen though, as my back, shoulders, face and chest are all pretty pink and toasty! In October!!!! Crazy.

Now which marathon shall I tackle next?? And how do I convince Cathy and family to come with me, as they were awesome race support?



Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

I cannot believe you've done THREE marathons within 1.5 years of your first. I do NOT predict that happening for me but we'll see...

Great job on the PR! You're well on your way to sub-5!!!

H-woman said...

Whoo hoo! Enjoy the rest of your vacation, the hard part's over!