Sunday, June 11, 2017

Ottawa Half Marathon

I participated in my first real race of the year, (I'm not counting the NYE run), on May 27th - the Ottawa Half Marathon.  This race was actually a friend's of mine idea.  She lives in Newfoundland so it was a chance for us to reunite.  She is a real runner!  A pro at the ultra distance stuff!  She did what they called the Lumberjack challenge: 2k, 5k, 10k on the Saturday and the full marathon on the Sunday.  I was going to do the Voyageur challenge: 5k, 10k on the Saturday and the half on the Sunday.  However, with being in an air cast in January and having to slowly rebuild my run to prevent re-injury, my coach and I decided to just stick to the half marathon.  I only got to 15km two weeks before the half and did a 16km run the week before.  I only started getting my pace back below 6min/km so I knew my goal of sub 2hr was going to be tough.  I knew I was no where near ready to PB this run but I was deeply hoping for a sub 2hr.  This would be my longest run in a loooong time.  Since this was more of a training race, I brought my bike with me and on Saturday rode in Gatineau park and along the Rideau canal with another old friend of mine who now lives in Ottawa.

Race day was actually quite warm.  Not uncharacteristically warm but all of a sudden warm so our bodies were not acclimatized to the heat and it made the run a bit more of a challenge.  I tried to settle out in a steady pace but of course adrenaline got the best of me and I started out quite quickly.  I was hoping my legs and feet would feel light and fast like my 15km run a couple of weeks ago but it wasn't meant to be.  I felt like I had to work hard to maintain pace.  I was steadily holding about a 5:41min/km pace and I thought I was right on target for a 2hr half and I was actually quite excited about that.  With 4km to go I decided to go for it!  I was going to try for the sub 2hr and deep inside me knew it was a bit of a mistake as I knew I was going to destroy my legs going for it.  With 2km to go, the wheels fell off - haha!  I struggled to keep a 6min/km pace.  But I thought I did enough for a sub 2hr.  Turned out I was way off mark.  Not sure if my garmin went wonky at some point or the distance markers were inaccurate.  My watch clocked in at 2:01 for a 5:42min/km pace but for 21.33km, even though I started my garmin late.  My official time was 2:02 with a 5:48min/km pace.  So not sure what exactly happened but either way I was actually quite pleased.  I only started getting my pace back under 6min and here I managed it for 21km.  The next day, or days, I paid for it though.  My legs felt like I did a marathon, haha!  But I was happy!  Woo!

Up next: Syracuse 70.3!!!

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