Sunday, April 22, 2012

Yonge St 10K & my kick ass water bottle

Toronto ON
BIB # 2207
Chip Time 51:48:5
Official Time 55:05:4
Pace 5:11
Corral #2 - Blue
Place 1683/5186
Gender Place 528/2906
Category Place 62/352

So I can now add 'completed 10K' to my race list, yay! And what a 10K it was! I knew that I'd do alright in this run, I always enjoy running 10K's in training, but I didn't know that I would finish so far ahead of my expectations! If you'll remember from my previous post, 55 minutes was my goal time, and to be honest I was a little concerned about running a 5:30 pace for a full 10K but figured I'd try my best. As long as I finished under 57 minutes I'd be happy.....

On Saturday, also known as my 41st birthday(!!), my family drove out to the Sheraton Centre with me to pick up my race kit. We then drove to the start of the race course, walked around a little, had some birthday (veggie for me) street meat from the most outgoing vendor out there, people watched (our favourite pastime) and then got back into the car and drove the course. I am SO GLAD that we did this. I had no idea of the area so it really set my mind at ease to know what I was getting myself into. It also helped during the run because I was able to pick out points to help me know where in the race I was. The plan was that my husband was going to drop me off at the start and then drive down to the end and wait for me there (God love him). Once we reached the end we picked out a meeting spot in case he didn't see me finish (which has been known to happen), and then hopped back onto the highway and went home to finish off the bday festivities. And sneak a nap in.

Race day I got up at 6am, showered, walked the dog, ate breakfast, got dressed, packed up my stuff, double checked it all because I really felt like I was forgetting something, got into the car and hit the highway with Derek at the wheel and my supportive teenage boys in their beds. It only took about 15 minutes for me to realize exactly what I was phone.....that has my Runstar App. Now I will have no idea what my pace/time is and will have no way of getting a hold of Derek to let him know that I'm done in case he doesn't see me finish (which has been known to happen). I really need to get a GPS watch! Oh well I joke, at least Noah won't be able to call me in the middle of the race (something else that has been known to happen). As we near the race area Derek drops me where they now have Yonge St blocked off, wishes me luck and with a slight whimper I pull up my big girl pants, get out of the car and follow all of the other racers making their way to the starting area. Brrrrr it's cold (4*C) and damp out. Pretty happy that I didn't wear the cute new Lulu running crops that I bought on behalf of my family for my birthday on Friday!
What is going on with that one foot? I can't stop staring at it.

I got in line for the porta potties (which I'm convinced homeless people had to have been using because how can they be so full of poop this early in the morning?!), and then made my way down to the starting area. I passed the next 20 minutes in a doorway huddled out of the wind with two other girls. They were super nice, to bad that they were both in the speedy yellow corral (projected time to be finished under 50 mins). I was in the blue corral (projected time to be 50-59 minutes). Eventually I made my way into my corral and tried to stay warm. After what seemed like hours the gun went off and the first corral started their race. Then it was our turn! Yay!! Time was going by so quickly it seemed! After what felt like no time at all I overheard someone saying we're at "2K and just under 10 minutes". SAY WHAT? That can't be right, I've never run at a sub 5 minute pace EVER! Hmmmm, should I slow down? This can't turn out well.....but I feel so good. Oh well, keep it up. In what felt like 1 minute later I heard someones Garmin beep off another KM and looked up to notice the 3K marker. This is crazy! Time is flying! And then at 4K disaster struck. The dreaded side stitch. Dammit! No! (I have since read that running downhill exacerbates side stitches since it increases the forces exerted on the entire body with each foot plant, and this course is almost all downhill!!) I quickly got on to the sidewalk and walked behind the water tables (which I didn't need because I had my beloved Simple Hydration water bottle ..... honest to God this is the best water bottle ever and not because it looks like a penis. You don't even notice it at all tucked all cozy like into the waistband of your pants!) and tried to get rid of the stitch. I breathed deeply, pushed in on the spot, and walked tall. Thankfully it went away but this stupid stitch truly took the wind out of my sails. I just kind of easy jogged along feeling sorry for myself for a minute when I heard a spectator say "Come on Samantha, you can do this!" (I'm assuming that she read the name on my race bib and wasn't some strange psychic) and I thought to myself "F'in right! I got this" and got back into the groove. I GOT THIS! And there it was. I never looked back. Thank you spectator who took the time to shout out my name. I picked people out ahead of me and one by one passed them. Man in the REALLY tight tights, goodbye, lady who looks like my mom, goodbye, guy in the Leafs hat *pfft*, goodbye, man with sever butt sweat, goodbye. Every now and then I would reach out encouragement to people who stopped to walk, gave dirty looks to the people who decided that they should walk across the street in the middle of a race of over 5000 people, made a wide birth of the girl vomiting on the side of the street and kept thinking to myself I GOT THIS. Finally we came to the bottom of Peter St and I knew from the drive through on Saturday that I only had 1K to go and turned it on. At this point I was thinking that I'd be happy to come in under an hour and just tried to pass as many people as I could while trying to find my husband in the crowd. And then as I came up to the mat I saw it. The timer. The timer that said 0:55:01. What. The. Frig?! How could I possibly have come in at 55 minutes? And wait a minute! My corral left about 3 minutes after the gun. That means that I ran this around 52 minutes? NO WAY! I walked through the chute, received my finishers medal and went to the meeting area to find my husband. As the minutes ticked by and the sweat started to cool I quickly realized that once again, Derek didn't see me finish. Boo! I quickly surveyed the crowd and found a girl who was willing to send him a text letting him know that I was finished and to come and meet me. Thank you random girl. A few minutes later we met up, got my snacks (I realized after that I totally missed the Chobani yogurt. Double Boo!) and made our way to the car. Derek was telling me about the exciting finish where Reid Coolsaet (Canada's Olympic marathon runner) overtook Kip Kangogo (I know, awesome running name!) at the very end and won by .4 seconds and other funny participants that he saw (like the guys who ran in green screen suits, even with the face masks) while I checked the SportStats app on my facebook account with Derek's iPhone to see if it had posted my finishing time. And there it was, my glorious time of 51:48. I had come here to this race thinking that finishing in 55 min would be a stretch, soon came to think that I wouldn't reach that and would settle for  finishing under an hour just to find out that I blew all of those goals away. What a roller coaster ride! While I wish that I could know what my split times were, I'll settle for finishing with an amazing time. Yay me!

Worst picture ever. My son who photoshopped this for me says that I look like a Smurf. LOL

I love the look of happiness on some of these guys faces. I'm just trying to make sure that I step on the mat!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Water, water & Yonge St 10K

So I've realized in the last 10 minutes that I am so not cool anymore. On Thursday night at work I got a text from my hubby saying that my Lulu package had arrived. Considering the FedEx driver that always seems to deliver my Lulu packages is a total creeper I was happy for two reasons 1) that I didn't have to face him and 2) it meant that my new water belt had arrived! Yay! Getting home and ripping open that package was all I could think about all night! And then today, I opened up the mailbox to find that the water bottle that I had ordered from Simple Hydration had arrived! Double yay! I don't think I've been this excited since I was 17 and found someone to buy me beer! So now it would seem that party excitement and water bottle excitement are somehow on the same level. Oh well, I'm cool with it I guess. Just don't tell my sissy. She'll rip me to shreds.

I was able to take the Lulu belt out for a 21k run (my final loooooong run before the Mississauga Half on May 6) on Friday afternoon.

Nuun, Nuun, Water Check!

Excuse the obvious work that we've recently had done.

My son had a hockey tournament all weekend long (Alliance Championships...they were eliminated in the semis...BOO!) but thankfully I was able to get out between games on Friday.

Kicking ass and taking names!

This wasn't the best run in the world for me, and to be honest I was nervous about it. The stomach flu had been making the rounds in my house last week and Friday I wasn't feeling 100% in the tummy area. Actually, I was feeling 'alright' until I took a GU around the halfway mark, THEN I really started to feel sick. Probably up until the final km I thought that I was going to vomit, but yay for me I was able to choke it down and finish strong. I'm pretty sure that I also sweat out whatever was getting ready to plague me because I was fine after that. Had I have had the time to actually eat something of substance after my run I probs would have indulged in the parental tailgate out in the parking lot before the second game! LOL Any way, the water belt was AWESOME! I'm a big drinker when I run so I probably could have used a fourth bottle, but I really liked the fact that I was able to carry one bottle of plain water and two with Nuun. Love my Nuun. And being able to stick my phone in the little pouch was great! I truly hate the arm band that I have to carry it in if I'm pocketless, so I plan on using this belt a lot, even if it's just for carrying my phone in.

The fact that I'm a big drinker is the reason that I purchased the Simple Hydration bottle. I first learned about this bottle from Tidbits of Tara . If you don't know her I suggest you check her out. She's funny as hell and her story is very inspirational. To me any way. Tara had a giveaway for the Simple Hydration bottle and even though I didn't win (BOO!) I still really wanted this bottle. It's pretty pricey, but hopefully worth it. It is designed to fit into the waistband of your pants or running belt, and from all of the reviews that I've read on it, you really don't even feel it there. You can also carry it comfortably in your hand, or so I've read.....

I posted this photo on FB only to have a million people (ok not a million) make dirty comments on it. I honestly never realized that it looked like a penis! LMAO

Obviously you don't wear the bottle in your jeans, but I didn't have a run planned today while I'm resting my Achilles tendon. Boy that really flattens out your bum though!! Even Gordie can't believe it!

Holy crap this mirror is dirty!
 I hate carrying anything in my hand while I'm running, but I don't always want the hassle of a belt on shorter runs so I think that this bottle should (hopefully) be perfect. I can't wait to try it out! Hopefully it will work for the Toronto Yonge St 10K on Sunday! Water stations at races are ass and I always spill all down myself so I'd rather just have my own.

Speaking of the Yonge St 10K I am SO EXCITED for this race! I haven't been in a real race since the Trek or Treat trail race in October! Sure I've participated in countless virtual races, but obvs they're not the same. I am pretty nervous though, simply because there are so many participants (15,000) and I'm not sure of the area so I don't know where to park, meet my fams, etc. We'll probably check out the area on Saturday when I pick up my race kit, and then I'll feel a whole lot better. I did have a brain fart when I gave them an estimated finishing time. I know for sure that I can easily keep a 5:50/km pace for 10k and 5:50 x 10 = 55 minutes right?! LMAO Ok, so now I have to work my ass off and keep a steady 5:30 pace to make my goal. Because I've put 55min out there, in my mind that's where I have to come in around. Oh Sam! My plan is to stick around the back of my corral and ask about until I find someone else with a 55 min goal and use them to pace myself. Hopefully it works..... Stay tuned!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

March Madness

Hmmmm, that'd be a better title if I were a basketball fan wouldn't it? Oh well, Stanley Cup playoffs are right around the corner and my Sabres on the brink of disaster. How sad. I feel like a Leaf fan right now. I guess I'll be stepping up to be a Penguins fan next week, but for now it's still LET'S GO BUFFALO!

March was a pretty decent month for me, but I'm still happy to see it over. I have been bothered by my IT Band for most of the month, but even with that I still covered the most distance ever. I never stepped foot into the gym once but that's ok. I like to use my hand weights at home rather than the machines, so it really just means that I was able to do all of my runs outside. Yay! The March weather this year has been crazy! We had a few +20*c days, quickly followed by slushy rain and zero temps. I went from running in my regular winter running clothes, to shorts & tank top and then back to my winter clothes. Crazy! I also took part in Ali's Running with Spatulas virtual 10k run that tied in with her relay run at the Around the Bay. SOOOOOOOOO many people ran this race (ATB), and it really made me want to do it next year. We'll see how I'm feeling about doing 30K next winter though. I've only just mastered 21k. Stay tuned......

This is me running with a spatula. Ok, posing with a spatula.

Total distance ran: 146km
Times ran OUTSIDE15
Times ran on the treadmill 0!!
Teams eliminated in playoff hockey 2
Teams still playing 1 Alliance championships are next weekend. Kick some ass Bulldogs!

OH! I ordered a new waterbelt from the Lulu website today. I can't wait for it to arrive. I hate the one that I have right now. It keeps leaking all over my butt.
3 water bottles and a pocket for my phone and a race bib holder. Yeah!