February 17, 2014

I went for a run

I think I've run the Pacific Road Runners First Half Half marathon seven times now, it's a good start of season race and really well organized.  It's one of those races where everyone in the Vancouver running community seems to show up - from first time half marathoners, to club runners, to ultra trail runners, to Olympians.  So really it's a good old social and chance to try run hard and see lots of friends.

My main take away from the race was that competitive womens road running is looking good in Vancouver!  In 2011 I ran 1:18:49 for 1st place female, in 2013 I ran 1:18:43 for 2nd place female, and this year I ran a PB time of 1:18:28 for 4th place female, so yep - each year I've run faster yet I've slipped down in the positioning!  And I know that there were a good few fast women who might typically run this race that were not even on the start line yesterday.

I can honestly say too, that after not much racing in the past 11 months I was keen to run hard.  I've had some solid training and decent times at workouts, and was keen to get the best time I could - even if I didn't expect a PB as the legs are still not 100%.  I've spent much of the last 11 months doing cross training or easing back into running, and yesterday I wanted to forget all that and run til it hurt ... which it did!

It was great to have friend, fellow Vancouver Falcon and also ultra runner Barry Young to pace with for a good portion of the race.  We aimed to set out at same pace so it was good to have someone to check splits with until I got into a rhythm.  We were soon joined by another ultra runner, Hassan Lofti-Pour (Sammy), and Sammy had great amusement trying to get me to talk.  But I just wanted to focus on the race environment and eek out every second I could so Sammy was pretty much met with a silent brick wall.  I promise I'll chat next time we're in the opening miles of an ultra Sammy!

Early miles with Barry.  Credit - Dave Burroughs
So all in all it was a fun jaunt around the Stanley Park seawall.  It was a good test of fitness and I'm happy I ran a smart race, managing to negative split despite some headwinds in the closing miles, and squeezing 15 seconds off my PB.

Trying to drop Sammy :)  Credit - 321photos.ca/ Mark Bates

A huge thank you to Pacific Road Runners who once again organised an amazing event, and being a past member it was super to see many familiar PRR faces yesterday!  In addition, the event raised more than $50, 000 for the childrens charity Variety - not bad for a volunteer run club race!  And of course, thank you to all volunteers - it's a top notch event and you are a huge part of it.

The pain of a PB ;)  Credit - Rita Ivanauskas
And whilst I may not be 100% back to pain free running and training, it's about time I said thank you to my wonderful sponsors who have stayed with me as I have been sidelined with injury.  Before the race yesterday when many thoughts were swirling through my head, I figured that if Topher was there (President of Mountain Hardwear/ Montrail and amazing runner himself) he'd tell me to just go run and have fun.  So that's what I did :)