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Royal Victoria Marathon - Half Marathon - RunHalf Marathon

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Victoria, British Columbia
Royal Victoria Marathon
Total Time = 2h 42m 58s
Overall Rank = 3457/3869
Age Group = F 20-24
Age Group Rank = 126/137
Pre-race routine:

Not much...Got up and felt sick to my stomach. Must have been the Chinese food Sonia and I ate the night before! Had some soda crackers and felt better. I got dressed and threw on the iPod to get pumped up and then headed outside to meet Zach. I waited and waited and he didn't come! I was like "did he get lost??" I decided I couldn't wait any longer if I wanted to get to the start line and to a porta potty before the gun. I joined the throng of runners swarming towards the Parliament buildings and got in line for the bathroom. I found my way over to the start line and placed myself way at the back. It took me 5 minutes to cross the mat once the gun had gone I was so far back!!! The day was cold, but sunny, and I was hoping the rain they predicted would hold off. So far so good!
Event warmup:

Just some quick jumping jacks and stretches at the start line. I was worried my IT band was going to be troublesome (it was) so I reminded myself to go slow and not push too hard. Then it was time to go!
  • 2h 42m 58s
  • 21.1 kms
  • 07m 43s  min/km

Good times had by all! The morning was a bit cold when we started (and there were, like, a MILLION people everywhere) so the start was a bit uncomfortable. But I reminded myself to go slow and steady and settled into a good. The first 8k went off without a hitch (well, except that I needed a bathroom break). I felt good, was enjoying the atmosphere, the people and the route. The sun was GORGEOUS over the water and I thought to myself how lucky I was to be up, healthy, and running on a morning like that. Before we started the announcer said whales had been spotted along Dallas road that morning, so I made a point to keep an eye out. (I was rewarded with a spotting on the way back in! Woo hoo!)

At the 10k mark I was starting to feel tired. The course was getting a bit hillier here and I was feeling it. All I could think was "WHERE IS THE FOOD STATION!?!?" I stopped and walked for a bit and grabbed one of the energy things I had in my pocket. I was tired and not quite to the turn around point/food station yet...still 3km to go! I trudged along as best I could but was starting to feel mentally pooped. My knee was starting to bug me a bit too, so I tried to take it easy.

When I finally reached the turn around, I was bombarded by police. I was like "WTF is going on here? Why are there so many police people?" I soon had my answer. Steve Osaduik (the marathon winner) was about to pass me. He started an HOUR after I did, and we were at the exact same spot. I remember looking at him and thinking, "I can't believe the pace he is keeping...that is unreal!! Can anyone run that fast with training? Or does he have genetics on his side? Where did he get those shoes? And where is the food!!!"

Finally I saw it - banannas, apples, granola bars, energy gels, and gatorade. YUM! I grabbed some stuff and waddled on. By this point, my knee and IT band were not loving life. Once I finished eating/drinking, I pulled over to one side and gave them a good stretch. 14km down, 7 to go. I thought to myself "Holy crap...still 7 to go? I've been out here FOREVER!! I'm ready for my massage!! OK, lets regroup. Am I on pace to break 2:30? Yup, so far so good. But I'm sore. Time to be mentally tough...get moving and don't stop moving." So I started running again. (Not fast mind you...but I was running.) The sun was really bright and kind of annoying now, but I was super glad it wasn't raining. I spotted a photographer up ahead and sped up, trying to look effortless. Apparently he didn't notice, because there aren't any photos of me anywhere besides the finish line. Oh well :)

At this point (about 16km) I started seriously thinking about the finish. I couldn't wait to be there! I was tired, sweaty, uncomfortable, and sore. As a result of being sore, I was slowing down...walking more frequently, and for longer segments. It was nice to chat to the ladies around me (mostly other first timers), but I was ready to just be done and have a shower. I took a look at my watch and calculated that I would have to run about 6 minute km's to finish at 2:30. I was sore and knew it wasn't going to happen but after about a 1km walk, I gave it my best shot. Getting going was painful, but once I was up to speed, it was OK. I focused on getting to the end and having a great big smile on my face for the finsh line photos. I also concentrated on not having anyone near me to spoil them (like last year!!). So I pretended I was on a search-and-destroy mission to pass everyone I could and make a good bubble around me for the photos (I'm so vain, I know..but those photos are usually all I have to show my parents!). Before I knew it, the 1km to go sign appeared and I worked hard to get there. By this time, I knew my time goal was bust, but I wanted to do as well as I could. I made sure I had my bubble, and heard them call my name. I was so excited to be done! All I could think was "I DID IT!! I ACTUALLY DID IT!!"

And just like that, I crossed the mat and became a half marathon finisher! :)
What would you do differently?:

Warm up a bit better
Space out my drinks
Have an energy pack earlier in the run

Post race
Warm down:

Warm down was super important because I was so sore. It had become overcast at about 2.5 km to go, and started spitting ever so lightly at about 1km to go, so it was kind of chilly. I put on my coat and grabbed some food before stretching out. I found my friend Sonia who had come down to see me finish, and we walked back to her place where I stretched some more and massaged my IT band in a hot shower.

Once clean, I got dressed and headed to my massage. HEAVENLY! From now on, I promise I will get in on any post-race massage deal I can find. It was awesome. I drank loads of water and let him work out some of the kinks in my low back and IT band. Before I knew it, my 20 mins was up and it was time to stand up. Then back to the car and home to Nanaimo (2hr drive). I was stiff and it was uncomfortable, but I made it. I was pretty pumped just to be done...and I knew there was turkey waiting at home!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Not enough training - with more I think I would have been less sore and more mentally tough. That was definetly the biggest issue - undertrained.

Event comments:

I'll be back!

Last updated: 2007-12-26 12:00 AM
02:42:58 | 21.1 kms | 07m 43s  min/km
Age Group: 126/137
Overall: 3457/3869
Performance: Good
Course: Up through dowtown Victoria (Wharf st) then along Johnson to Cook, down past Cook St. Village (where was the coffee!!) and into Beacon Hill Park. Once through the park, up Dallas Rd, through a subdivision, then back to Dallas Rd for the long, relativley straight run to the finish. Flat :)
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %n/a
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Ok
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2007-12-26 1:21 AM

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: Royal Victoria Marathon - Half Marathon

2007-12-26 3:14 AM
in reply to: #1116687

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Subject: RE: Royal Victoria Marathon - Half Marathon
Fantastic!! WEll done! As someone who is planning my first half marathon it was great to read your RR.
2007-12-26 9:35 AM
in reply to: #1116687

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Victoria BC
Subject: RE: Royal Victoria Marathon - Half Marathon
Congrats I also ran this race and found it to warm out. I was prepared for rain and wind and ended up taking a shirt off at Beacon Hill park and just left it. Now that it is winter wish I had it.

Congrats on your first. It was my second and I was also off of my goal time but had a great time in the event. The hard part was standing around for 45 min then having to run the kids race in the rain they wanted to just take off and sprint.
2007-12-26 8:38 PM
in reply to: #1116687

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Gulf Shores, AL
Subject: RE: Royal Victoria Marathon - Half Marathon
Great job and an excellent report. Congrats!
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