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Milton, Ontario, Canada

Monday, October 26, 2009


Okay, so I’ve never run in a headwind like the one I ran into on Saturday afternoon. After a busy morning doing mum/suburb/kid things (grocery shopping/driving kid around to lessons/going to a bank opening for a pumpkin decorating gig), I headed out at 2pm to take on 8km. I was already tired and not feeling it at all, but I forced myself off of that couch (which the husband was snoring away on!) and got to it.

By the time I hit 2.5k, I decided to turn north and cut my run to 6k instead of 8. I was heeding John Stanton’s advice (paraphrased), “If you don’t feel like running, get out there for 10 minutes. If you’re still feeling punky after that, you probably are too tired to run, so turn around and go home. The beauty is, you’ve gotten a 20 minute run in.”

I was doing okay-ish, chugging along, looking at the lovely fall colours and fighting to keep my ball cap on when I saw a friend of mine driving. He stopped and yelled, “Get back to your side of the tracks!” (I do live west of the tracks from him). That completely threw me off. I tried to get back into a groove, but then that blasted (hee – pun!) headwind basically sucked my will to RUN.

I’m ashamed to admit I walked.

For like 1km.

Fortunately, that is all it took for my shame to win over and I completed the rest of the run in fine form and did the whole thing in about 40 minutes (insert standard second hand watch comment here – blah blah blah). So coupled with the headwind, I went out VERY fast (for me). It must be the cool, crisp air that is helping me speed along.

This week I’ll be on the treadmill with perhaps a Wednesday lunch time run. I got the latest issue of Canadian Running magazine and there are some treadmill training runs in there, so maybe I’ll do one of them and let you know what I think (foreshadow – I’ll think they are EFFing HARD).

Thursday, October 22, 2009

"If you can run 10k...

...you can run a half."

Yup, I heard this on Sunday.


Um, so.

I think I may begin training for the May Mississauga Half in January (20 weeks is a good timeline, right?).

January is perfect timing because my Cardio Sculpt class will be finished as will the kid's parent and tot swimming class, so I'll have time to dedicate to running. I'll join a program as well for sure!

As long as work doesn't get in the way.

This week has been okay, but I haven't run as much as I wanted to. Sunday, I hosted 8 ladies for a cupcake exchange (CampCupCake)

Who runs after an afternoon of sampling nine different cupcakes? Not me! Nope, I eat pizza, more cupcakes and drink wine.

Monday I ended up working late and not getting home and eating until 8:30, so I didn't run. Tuesday I went to Curves at lunch and the aforementioned Cardio Sculpt at 7pm (which had lots of Cardio, just not running). Wednesday, I worked late. AGAIN (you'd think I perform kidney transplants or something, but nope, I work in marketing). Today I went to Curves and came home and ran 5.15k before dinner on the treadmill.

It was difficult for sure. The 6pm news is not easy to run to (perhaps because I can't stand Christine Bentley). I did eat an apple 30 minutes before my run, so I wasn't lacking in energy or anything, the run was just tough and my right leg/knee was twinging.

I wish I didn't commute almost 3 hours a day, I'd love to run right after work way more often.

So, a low-key week (with exercise, but not a lot of running - yet) and a plan (kinda).

Amazing what a good race will do for you!

Thanks for the comments in my race report. I'm still on the high!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Oasis Zoo Run 10k Race Report

I did it!

I ran the entire 10k (even through water stations) and finished in 1h3m5s!!!!

I am SO happy and proud and CAN NOT BELIEVE it!!!!

I went to bed at midnight on Friday after my baseball banquet and had a good sleep. I woke at 6:00am and quickly went to drink some water and eat some toast with peanut butter and a banana.

When I went back upstairs to get changed, I discovered that my favorite (of two) sports bra was in the wash.

I wore it anyway.

Because the temperature was stated as -1 when I went to get dressed, I decided to wear my race shirt (I've always raced wearing the shirt I've received in the kit) with my long-sleeved Nike golf pull-over I got at this years Globe and Mail golf tourney. I also wore my capri pants as they are my most comfortable pants. I decided that I'd check my bag (and extra layers) at the last minute once I got to the zoo.

I got on the road after a Tim Horton's stop for a medium coffee and made my way to the zoo. While driving, I came up with a plan to see how I felt after 4km and 8km and walk if I needed to.

I got to the zoo and was directed to park. I was really close to the entrance (where the bag check and chip pick up was) so I got my chip and lined up for the bathroom by the mono-rail. I had to pee.


After standing in the line for 10 mins and observing that there was a line up for the men's washroom (my plan was to just pee in the men's room), I begged a mother with a screaming, poopy child to let me bud before her and use the family washroom, least I pee my pants right then and there. Bless her heart, she totally let me through.

After that I stripped off my outer two layers and checked my bag. It was cold. Bright, but cold. I walked through the corrals and back to the bag check just to keep warm(ish). At about 12 mins to the gun time, I lined up again for the washrooms and chatted with a few people. I kept hearing that the course was tough with a lot of hills.


I made it through the port-o-pottys and back to my corral about a minute before the gun went off. It was great timing! I was in the +1hr corral (or really, F**king slow) and I saw two ladies, one dressed as the Road Runner (complete with "Beep Beep!" sign) and the other as Wile E Coyote and a few other runners with animal ears or leopard suits on. The mood was fun. Of course, being at the back with my ear buds in, I couldn't hear a thing, but we surged forward and the race had begun.

It was a very crowded, slow start which suited me fine. I actually had to walk for a bit to fix my iPod right after we crossed the start line. I eventually sorted it out (I put my iPod in my water belt pocket instead of in the arm band and it was much more comfortable), and began to run enjoying the scenery of the other runners and the views.

1k and 2k, passed quickly. I completely missed 3k. I got to 4k and had no thoughts of stopping. There was a water stop somewhere around here and I actually jogged through it! I was amazed! I saw zebras and elephants and it seemed that every animal I saw was a reward for climbing a hill and after sighting them, I was headed down hill. I was feeling GREAT. I got to 5k and checked my trusty second-hand watch (I've really got to sort something out in that department) and it was 9:35am. Okay. I felt good, I was warm, but not hot and I had no problem running. Onward for the last half.

Just after the 5k mark, I saw a man walking and told him, "Over half way there!" He said he was much better trained last year and then muttered something about a big hill. I wished him luck and quickly discovered what he meant by the big hill.

We were headed to and through the Africa pavilion and to get there, we had to climb hill after hill and a (short) set of stairs. It was all wooden planks, but I dug (literally, I was pretty much squatting) hard and ran everything, minus the stairs. I ran through another two water station somewhere along the lines, rocking out to "Rapunzel" live by Dave Matthews Band (seriously, people must have thought I was crazy). I saw the 7k marker and while I had no intention of stopping or walking, I began to mentally cheer myself to the finish line.

By this time I had picked up an older, taller gentleman and we kept each other in sight as we made turns and followed the path of the race. It was great to have someone to run with even if we never made eye contact. I got mixed up and thought I was heading to the 9k mark, but when 8k came up, I was fine. I just pushed onward. When I saw the 9k marker I knew I had the race in the bag. I knew I was going to run the entire thing and I knew I'd cross the line listening to "Born to Run" (the thought of which made me smile with glee).

9-10k were great. The crowds were thickening, I could hear the announcer, Springsteen was rocking in my ears and most importantly, I was doing it! I was finishing a 10k race! The only complaint I have is that the finish came up very quickly. I could have sprinted to the line, but I didn't notice it until I was upon it and so I crossed in the same even pace hearing my name (for the first time ever) and pumping my fists, yelling, "YES!" as I saw the gun time turn to 1h5m2s (you'll recall my goal of 1h10m). Once across the finish line things were packed and I missed the food, but made my way through, got some poweraid, picked up my bag and headed to my car, ecstatic with the race I had just run, already planning for the next one.

It was without a doubt, the best of the four races I've ever run.

I have pure understanding of why this sport is so addictive now.

Can't wait for the next one.

Time: 1:05:02
Chip: 1:03:04
Place: 1228
Pace: 6:31
Category: 160/293
Gender: 611/1192

Friday, October 16, 2009


Is my bib number for the Oasis Zoo 10k Run taking place at the Toronto Zoo tomorrow at 9am.

I have pretty much no goals for this race other than to finish it (and of course I will finish it!).

I don't have any goals due to a number of things:

-I've never run 10k at once
-I haven't been running consistently since before my last race in August
-I am at my baseball banquet tonight (not drinking and hope to be home by 11, but still)
-I am, yet again, going to this race all alone
-Its FREAKING cold out there
-The route just LOOKs scary!

I will carry water (there are only two stops and I won't be able to go without in between). I guess my game plan is to see how I feel after 5k and then determine a walking/pace strategy from there. Mentally, I know I can run 8k pretty much without stopping to walk, but I have only done that when I'm running alongside Sarah blabbing away. I have no idea how I'll do with only Dave Matthews, The Killers and Journey to keep me going (note - must add to my run list).

Don't let this post fool you, I'm pretty freaking excited that I've managed to gain enough confidence in my running over the past year to even contemplate a 10k race. When I think back to where I was last October I really do applaud myself for how far I've come (vain as it sounds). I do wish that my husband and the kid could be there at the finish line, but alas, the kid has tumbling class and the husband does enjoy his sleep, so I'll rush home to share my glory with them. Then, I shall share it with all of you! Check my twitter (@nicmac) around 11:00 if you really want to know how I did. I'm hoping to finish between 1hr10 and 1hr15.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


I have lost quite a bit.

I ran 8.3km this windy, cold Sunday morning with Sarah and I sucked it! It was the first time I had run in 8 days (ran 8k with Sarah last Saturday). This week was just horrible. It was filled with lethargy and drinking.

(Quick aside: I'm trying to have kid #2. I have been for a while - not a long time in the grand scheme of things, but long enough. I thought this was the month. It turned out not to be and well all motivation turned to lethargy. Boo hoo. I'm not here to write about that stuff though and so, on to running).

The drinking was fun. The lethargy was paid for today.

I'm not sure how I'm going to get through the zoo 10k next Saturday or what my plan is. I WILL run it, that goes without saying of course. It'll be the first time I run 10k. Ever. I'll guess I'll set goals along the lines of finishing and not dying! HA!

So, I've had enough of feeling sorry for myself and am now back to running and writing about it. And reading about people who do the very same thing.