This year’s Around the Bay was a completely different experience for. A personal best in all ways but speed.
Due to a new job which requires large amounts of international travel my training has taken a big hit. In December, after taking 3rd place masters at the West Palm Beach Marathon, my goal was to get in a sub 2:30 at Around the Bay this year. Training started out well but took a nose dive mid-January with 4 weeks of intensive travel. Not that I’m complaining (too much), doing a long run one early Sunday morning through the streets of Paris was certainly exciting. However, those of you that travel know the busy schedule, the terrible facilities in most of the hotels and the difficulty in fitting in training not to mention a mostly uncontrolled diet of restaurant meals eaten at strange hours.
A week before the run I was still undecided and not signed up for Around the Bay. I knew I couldn’t make my goal time so what was the point? I signed up anyway knowing that between that day and the race I would be on 6 airplanes at 5 different airport and 3 different Euopean countries. Returning home on Friday, 3 days before race day, I was still waffling. Finally the point came to me. I have a very good friend who has been training hard and wants to qualify for Boston at the Ottawa Marathon. Since I am already qualified and planning to run in 2008 it would be great if she were there too. I would be her personal pace bunny! YEAH! Now I have a reason to run, and what better reason could there be?!?!
Sunday morning found us at the start line ready to go. Slightly chilled but looking forward to a great run. Our goal time was 2:50, nine minutes faster than her last years race. I’ve been doing long runs with her and was pretty sure we’d make it. She’s talking to me again now, I never realized being a pace bunny could be so fun however towards the end I was feeling a bit mean. I knew she was tired, feeling awful and ready to slow down but with only 20 minutes to the end her breathing was ok so I pushed. And pushed some more. Only 20 walking steps up the hill (I hope she’ll forgive me for that). In the end, we made it. 2:49. I think that I felt happier crossing that finish line just behind her, knowing that we had both made our goals, then I ever have on my own.
And, to the Running Free Team Member we came across walking about 1.5 km from the end and coaxed back into a run, I hope you made your goal time too!
Next race: Michele’s personal 4 hour pacer at the Ottawa Marathon.