I wish this went on for another 4-5 steps…
It’s no secret that this winter has been a challenging one for those of us ramping up for the spring racing season; for me, it’s training for Hamilton’s Around The Bay 30km. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy winter and winter sports, the family and I have been out snowboarding and skating, playing hockey and tobogganing multiple times this year; it’s simply a matter of heading out prepared for what’s going on outside your windows. However, after a while, the bitter cold wears you down and you’d simply like a day with temperatures up around freezing mark just for a break.
Anyway, a few weeks ago I took some pics on my run which show some of what we’ve been dealing with; Blizzard for the first half of the run, sunshine and cold in the middle, blizzard on the home stretch. (Murphy’s Law and all that)
(Sorry for all the bird pics)
Just for quick reference, in those few photos, the Skyway bridge is supposed to be visible from there (here’s a closer view), I doubt you could even see where this picture was taken from.
Pounding the tarmac through the seasons, a band of runners are brazenly challenged with intimate questions as they pace their routes. Liberated from responsibilities, their guards drop dramatically, releasing funny and brutally frank confessions, and weaving a powerful narrative behind the anonymous masses.
A film by Matan Rochlitz & Ivo Gormley.
Not much I can add to this description, it’s touching, maybe a little too close to home at times…
It seems that every year, by the time I finish the Road2Hope (first Sunday of Nov.), I am so burnt out that I simply can’t be arsed to write up a race report. Even last year when I had a major PB and only ran the half, I simply vegged and my motivation to do a write-up was nowhere to be seen. As such, I still feel obligated to post this (horribly late) for posterity sake.
Road2Hope Marathon – 42.36 km – 03:50 – 5:26/km pace
What a mixed bag this race was.
On the bus ride to the starting area, a chatty dude from Windsor sat down next to me and happily talked away the entire trip. It wasn’t a bad thing, he was quite nice, but one of the last things he said before we left the bus was how much he hated wind while running…I should have seen the foreshadowing but hindsight is 20/20 so…
The first 20km flew by and I stuck pretty closely to the 3:45 pacer until he stopped to use the washroom. Right around that time we hit the significant downhill and I was determined to use it to my advantage, but Murphy did his best to throw a wrench into the works. As we turned onto the Red Hill Parkway, the cold wind coming off Lake Ontario became a massive headwind which negated some of the advantage. I probably pushed too hard on this section trying to bank some time, and when the 3:45 pacer passed me at 33km I was kicking myself for not racing smarter.
I ran a pretty decent race; hitting most of the tangents, fueling well etc., but ultimately I didn’t have enough fitness to hold my position. My right leg (glute, groin, hamstring quad) had been barking since the 15km mark and by the time I reached the mid 30’s I was in some serious pain. My lower back joined in the pain parade as well, but the major contributor was my feet; they were simply aching, and I’m not sure why. My feet hurt so much that I seriously considered taking off my shoes and running barefoot at one point, but quickly realized that was desperation talking. Finally, I knew things were a train wreck when a lady in a puffy winter coat passed me at the 37km mark and I couldn’t catch her…the shame.
This race was still a PB by a couple minutes, but I wasn’t really happy with how I ran it. My mental game was ok, and I thought my fueling was decent, though I felt hungry at the 12km mark, and had finished all my gels etc. by the early 30’s. I thought I had carb loaded effectively the days before the race but something was definitely off.
It’s all in the books now (especially with this significantly delayed race report), time to move onto new challenges.
I wish this went on for another 4-5 steps…
Alexander Crook traveled to Red Bluff Bay in the South Baranof Wilderness Area. This video is one of the projects that was produced. Running Wild, a short film about trail running in the wilderness.
It’s been most of a week since I did the BPMR. My body seems ready to get back to training, but before I start talking about future goals and training programs, I think it’ll be beneficial to go over some things to improve on for next year (if I decide to do it again…which is “probably”).
Here goes: Things to Improve/Change for Next Year
Have a great weekend all, enjoy the sunshine while it lasts!