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Saturday, October 15, 2011


STWM or the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon starts in less than 12 hours, yet here I sit, calmly sipping a beer and blogging.  No nervous running around and packing, repacking of my gear.  I am chill.  No idea why!

When I got up, Cathy was already making chili with the hamburger we were going to use for Thursday night's dinner...plans changed at Ocean's, if you all recall.  Such good smells for so early in the day.  I had a couple of slices of the leftover pizza.  Breakfast of champions, I tells ya!

After some puttering around, we both got ready to face the outside world, and after some negotiating with the family (who decided to stay home), Cathy and I took off for the Expo.  What a difference a year and a race makes.  Last year, at this time, I was running the Goodlife Toronto marathon, and since I flew in on a Friday, we went to the Expo from the airport.  It was a good Expo, but nothing special.  This year, on a Saturday, and with 5,000 registered for the marathon alone (and all three events - Half, Marathon and 5K - all sold out) the Expo today was PACKED.  And quite large.

We walked in and immediately sampled some Oasis juices (a new "Canadian" blend of Saskatoon berries and Cranberry - yummy, and an orange mango mix that I quite liked)...then it was on to the Liberte booth, where we tried the Vanilla Greek with forks...just to get their point about it's thickness across.  After filling out my "why I run" bib (because I CAN) at the iRun stall, I decided that I should get my bag to start holding all the swag.  Picked up my bib# (that's how the packages were sorted), and then found out how to register my stats on Facebook, so everyone can watch my times as I cross the mats at 10k, the halfway mark, etc.  Then we went back into the crowd, to see what else we could come up with.  I decided to pick up a t-shirt from the Brooks STWM collection, as I packed a long-sleeved and a tank, but nothing in between.  I think I'm going to be too hot for the sleeves and too cold for the tank, so best be safe.  I chose a green one with a really nice logo on front.  Since I forgot my USB port, any photos will have to wait till I am home.  As well, on the sale rack, was a onsie for a future marathoner.  I picked it up for a running friend that is about to have a baby.  Perfect! 

Wandered around from booth to booth, sampling Cliff bars, Powerbars, shot blocks and the like, looking over gear and some of the other marathons trying to tempt me to run there (Quebec City looks quite nice...maybe one day), and chatted with John Stanton, posing for a picture.  Found the 4:55 bunny, and after confirming his pace (and 10:1's), decided I would try to keep up with him as long as I can.  Would be SWEET to cross the finish line sub-5!  I will be equally thrilled with another PB  on the year, finishing better than last year's 5:21.  I then signed up for my photo plaque (will include a medal, my photo, race bib, and engraved time) and bought a pair of sunnies (which I don't know if I'll need or not but they were on sale for Expo), we packed up and took off, me much poorer than when I walked in! 

Headed down to the St. Lawrence market, and met up with M., who moved to Toronto earlier this year, and who I've run Melissa's with in the past.  The three of us wandered around the market, had a coffee and a danish (I did, anyway) before deciding it was time for dinner.  Ended up a the Irish Embassy, a nice restaurant/pub type place near the market.  After Cathy and I shared some calamari, I enjoyed a dinner of maple salmon on a bed of mashed cauliflower and butternut squash.  It was perfectly cooked and quite a nice dinner.  Oh, there were also a couple of pints of Guinness...after all, it was an Irish pub!  After a nice visit, we parted ways, as Cathy and I had to return to Brampton.  M. lives in downtown TO, so will also try to get out to see me across the finish line, or along the route somewhere.

Home, with another beer (not Guinness, so it is going down very slowly) and a slice of pumpkin pie (carb loading...jeez...), I'm upstairs blogging while the family watches Nascar downstairs.  Not my sport...not at all.

Okay, guess I should start to wind-down and head for bed.  I am yawning quite a bit, so I should take my own hints.

Will update you all tomorrow after the race.  Should be a good one!  At least it won't be +30C!!!


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