Harry’s Spring Run Off
Date: Saturday April 2nd, 2011
Location: High Park, Toronto, ON
I am getting better with age.
I didn’t really prove that little theory of mine until this Saturday when I ran the Harry’s Spring Run Off 8km. The last time I ran that race it was called the Dupont Spring Run Off…and I was 29 years old. That was 11 long years ago. Of course being the stats nerd that I am I HAD to go and check my finishing time from that race. I ran it in 38:49, which worked out to 4:55 km/s on a really hilly course. Could I do better? I thought I might be able to, however I was also planning on running TO the race venue, which is roughly 8.5 km from my house. Seeing as I had to do long run that day, I thought that made the most sense timing wise. But I wasn’t sure how tired I’d be when I got there.
So off I went at about 8:45 am. I made it to High Park just after 9:30 am. It was not the easy run out I had hoped for as I was running into a really good headwind all the way out. And then the wind decided to change direction and come out of the north as I ran up the big fat hill on Ellis. Ugh. But at least I was really warmed up by the time I met up with my hubby!
I was quite excited by the time we got to the race start. I was actually looking forward to going hard. My game plan was to run as hard as I could for as long as I could. I was a little concerned about the hills as I haven’t done any proper hill training but with some decent pacing I figured I’d be fine.
For some ridiculous reason I seeded myself in the 40-43 minute corral when I signed up so my plan was to get to the very front of my corral. Totally not a problem. I stretched a bit, re-tied my trusty Newtons and waited for the gun to go off. I had to dodge a few slower folks but managed to get into some open space relatively quickly. Hit the first km marker in 4:30. YES. I was feeling good. I had taken a GU Roctane just before the start and I figured that would take a couple of km to kick in. It hit me just after I crested the Centre Road hill, just past the 3km mark. Too bad I didn’t take it earlier, that hill might not have been as much trouble as it was! I recovered pretty quickly once I got to the top. I was motoring along, still turning over between 4:35-4:45 kms, depending on the terrain. My heart rate was pinned but I felt like I was completely in the zone. It hurt but I almost wasn’t aware of it. Love that. I was trying to pick off as many women as I could. That got harder towards the end. Some guys passed me but no women. I caught a couple as we got close to Spring Road and the lovely 400m steep climb towards the finish line. I saw Gary with the camera and I could hear him yelling looking good, now pick it up (God love him). I was gassed. My heart was in my throat. I tried to keep my shoulders back and look up the hill. There was a woman in front of me, less than 50m ahead of me but I couldn’t catch her. Not without barfing. I pushed as hard as I could the last 100m. My entire body was filled with lactic acid. Sweet sweet pain. I looked at the clock as I came up to the line: 37:12. Sweet. Beat my previous time by 1 minute 37 seconds. Forty schmorty.
Met up with G, gave him my goodies and then I went for a nice little 2km cool down run. Got back to the car and there was an Americano waiting for me. Love him. Got home, stretched and thought I’d check to see where I ended up in my age group. I just about fell off the couch when I saw that I had come in 7th in my age group. 7th!!! Out of 144 women. That woman in front of me was 6th. ARG.
Kinda makes me wonder what I would have done had I NOT run 8.5 km before hand!
Next up, the Good Friday 10 miler. I’m going to have to earn my Cadbury Mini Eggs!