Sunday, May 29, 2011
Ottawa Race weekend
I asked Emily her goal time and she said it was 2:40, and I said “Perfect – me too”. She then pointed up ahead to a 2:36 pacer and we shortly bunched into a group of about 6 or 7 runners with the pacer. I was thinking this was faster than I wanted to be going, but figured I would go with the pace for a few km’s and see how it felt. We all stuck together until about the 15 km mark and Emily started falling off the back a bit, and slowly but surely our pack was diminishing one by one.
I was lucky to get some great cheering on the course from my sister Diana, Rich Thomas, Phil Villeneuve, Heather Gallagher, and of course Sarah and the kids at the finish.
By about the 25 km mark it just the pacer dude and myself left and we kept our consistent pace going. After a few more km’s he was straggling, and faded, and then I was on my own.
My whole approach to the run was to keep myself distracted from the task at hand as long as I could, and then when I needed to I was going to dig deep and really focus on finishing strong. When we hit the canal I knew we had 10 km to go and that it was pretty much flat. I thought to myself, “This is relatively easy now – just keep it steady and it’s 2 back-to-back BVH Wednesday night races I need to survive”. I knew that pain well and it felt just about right.
I continued to reel in a few more people over the next few kilometers and then with 2 km to go I poured out what I had left to bring it home. I was so pumped to see Sarah, Julia and Evan with just 300 m to the finish, which gave me enough for one final kick.
I crossed the line at 2:34 and was quickly being ushered into the elite area. When I said I wasn’t elite and just a ‘wanna be elite’, the guy told me I was the first non-elite to finish. I seriously couldn’t believe what I had just done!
Emily finished in 2:43 and was the top Canadian woman. Given this was the Canadian Marathon Championships, Emily is the 2011 Canadian Marathon Queen. I managed to finish 9th Canadian. A big congrats to Emily for an impressive run and what a great way to meet the latest addition to the BVH group.
Full Results: http://www.sportstats.ca/display-results.php?lang=eng&racecode=47411
Today I far exceeded what I ever thought I was capable of doing. I was inspired in so many ways today, and I think that was a big part of what helped me be in such a great headspace to pull this off.
With all the great performances in the Calgary races today – congrats to all by the way – I think we need to keep the running project going. Sarah tells me I have qualified for sub-elite status for New York so we already have a fall 2012 project for the Harriers!