mickey mouse

mickey mouse

Sunday, 25 November 2012

Found a new route, lost my voice

Part of the fun of training for a marathon is that you have to run far. Like silly far. Like 30k some days far. That means that unless you have the ability to forget stuff right after you've seen it, running the same routes for miles and miles gets darn dull darn fast.

Granted we've gone off the beaten path and found everything from deer to train stations to places called the Hermitage...whatever that is...

Since we have to run back-to-back runs on the weekends, it's become a challenge to find places we've never seen and head out to cover the KMs with the distraction of new surroundings. Some places were winners, like the Dofasco Trail. Other routes like the daunting Bruce Trail will not soon be repeated.

This Saturday we filpped the runs, and did 28k Sat (14k Sun). Em chose the route, Niagara on the Lake, a lovely hamlet south of Hamilton. Did it take us 40min to drive somewhere to run 28k, yes. Was it 5:50 when Em pulled into my driveway and yanked me from my warm house? Yep.

The run was quite lovely, along the Niagara River from Fort George (whoever HE is) to the Isaac Brock Monument in Queenston. Luckily we have a rule that you can take a walk break if we have to stop and read historical markers....like the Dead House (cheerful).

We got to the Monument, and realized the darn thing was up like 300 rickety wooden stairs. Undaunted (and needing to pee), we climbed to the top.

For reasons known only to the locals, there was THIS sign in the women's washroom:
Had not occurred to me to partially disrobe after 14k and wash my feet until they told me I couldn't.

We took a couple more lovely photos of the view from the top and the monument, but I was wishing I had Google with me so I could research the good General.

By the time we got back to NOTL, I'd lost my voice and Lori had done some kind of horrid damage to her knee, which kept her in Emerg 'till 5am and off the road Sunday. We did, however, manage lunch and a trip through the Christmas Store. I'd run there again, just not on a wickedly windy November morning. The only bright side was my shift at Copps was cancelled for Saturday and my boss let me have Sunday night off because I still can't talk. My husband loves the silence....

Monday, 12 November 2012

If they say 'flat' they lie!

So with WDW Marathon weekend coming up faster than a jackass in Honda Civic in my rear view mirror, it's time to get moving with the training.

On that note I managed to skip my Saturday training run, blaming it on the fact that my buddies were either sick or running at horrid early hours of the morning. Good eh?

For our Sunday LSD, in a fit of 'seemed like a good idea at the time', we registered for the Downsview Half Marathon, run on Rememberance Day in Toronto.

I thought it fitting that I customize the race bib to pay tribute to my favourite man in uinform....although that would come back to haunt me at about the 20K mark when Emily used it against me.

It was a beautiful day, we actually broke a temperature record in Toronto with a balmy 17 or so degrees on November 11th. What that meant was I was overdressed as usual and spent 21.1k trying to take off clothes while wearing a Camelbak. The first few K felt nice, which should have warned me that the last few were going to kick my butt.

Who'd have thought an Air Force Base would be hilly? Seriously, you can't land a plane on those hills....lying liars who lie about flat courses! I've never run in the park/base before and I was happy that they had marshalls and volunteers everywhere pointing us in the right direction and shouting encouragement.

We ran, and ran, and ran some more. The only thing I have to say I was unhappy with was the fact that they said there would be planes lined up on the runway. There was 'plane', singular.....so we posed with it.

I started to get tired around the 19k mark....plodding along while Emily yelled 'pick up your feet' and Angel kept up a steady stream of happy patter.  The closer we got to the finish (which was up a freaking HILL) the slower I got. Emily pulled out her ace in the hole and said 'do it for Henry'.....AHHHH, how do I say no to that?

We ran across the finish line, right up to the nice lady with the medals.

For the first time ever, I was one of the last people to cross. Normally I'm slow, I'm aware of that, but this was a hard, hilly course, and those folks in front of me must have been made of stronger stuff. The medal lady ran a wee bit short of medals and had to (literally) chase down a truck and get some medals off it for the last finishers.

681    655 carolyn pleasance      3:10:37 HF40-49   83/83     325  9:03 3:09:45  

I was impressed with this race for many reasons: the venue was interesting and challenging, the weather was wonderful. The fact that the course stayed open until the last last last people crossed the line, including the mile markers, the water stations, the actual finish line signage, the people directing along the course was the nicest feature of any race I've ever run. Normally the last racers are an afterthought...but in this case we were treated the same as the speedy folks, there was even food (hot food!) left over!

The only odd complaint we had was one volunteer at the end of the race. We were collecting our post race snacks and one of our group asked if she could have a package of the Worther's Candies that were being handed out. The volunteer said 'nope, it's the last box and I'm taking it home'. Really?  Another volunteer kindly offered to break open another box and share with us.

What a wonderful way to spend Rememberance Day, but darn I'm tired out. Thank goodness for waffles afterwards and friends who don't mind if you're lying face down on the table.

I didn't understand the giant flower pots, but they amused the heck out of me. FEED ME SEYMOUR!