Gong show of awesome!

**wrote this late yesterday but am posting today!

What a day! I shall start off by saying that I am really happy with the outcome of today’s race. But let me back up to the start of the day so you can get a proper feel of it.

Woke up at 5am – as one friend said, “You were up early!”. It was a 9am start but, well, remember…I have Abby to deal with.  But she was relatively well behaved. A few Dead Dog’s thrown, but she got herself out of them faster than normal. The best part was when she start running and nudging my legs (ankles, really) with her nose – SHE WANTED TO RUN!!  It’s like she knew. I would have whipped out my phone to capture it on video but I knew she’d stop the minute my hand went in my pocket. I think she’s on to me.

The forecast was for a hot one (again, relative to the rest of the world) and at 5:30am, it was already “heating up”.

I love this little creature SO MUCH.

For Portland I packed a lot of possible race gear as I was unsure what the weather was going to be on race day, but in doing so, I didn’t carefully think out the possible combinations I was creating…and in the end, I looked like Rainbow Bright. For today I decided to highlight my obnoxious shoes by matching my top to them! I’m wearing CEP Compression calf sleeves which I love, Asics Gel Nimbus (HATE the colour), Lululemon shorts and a lime green comfy top from…WALMART!!!

Drove downtown, parked about 3 blocks from the start line and headed into the mayhem. And when I say mayhem, I mean MAYHEM. There were 13,000 people who ran the half marathon this morning and let’s just say that each runner had only ONE spectator with them. That is A LOT of people downtown at once – all trying to do the same 2 things: 

  1. Use a port-a-potty
  2. Line up at the start line
TOTAL. MAYHEM. I have learned (the hard way) that I need to pee, on race site, before a race. I waited for FORTY MINUTES. And when I was 4 people away from a port-a-potty I realized that a guy who was a spectator (he wasn’t dressed to run at all) and had been in line with a friend who was a runner, was about to use one of the precious port-a-potties. I just about lost it. He was French so this conversation happened in French but I basically asked him if he was seriously about to use a port-a-potty TEN MINUTES before the race was to begin when there was a line of, no joke, 70 runners. He saw no problem with it. I was NOT impressed.  

Anyway, when I finally got to to the starting area, there were 13,000 people trying to get in. I had to hop a fence to actually get INTO the starting area and threaded my way forward but finally hit a solid wall of runners…but was only at the 1:55 pace bunny (PLEASE, let me know if you have never heard of a race pace bunny – I think it might be more of a Canadian thing based on what an American friend said!). I was a wee bit panicked frustrated but there was nothing I could do about it.

Gun went off right at 9am…but I didn’t cross the start line until about 9:04 (guess how I was feeling at that point?) and then I knew that I had about 3000 people in front of me who were going to be running slower than my pace and I NEEDED TO GET PAST THEM. So I did what I shouldn’t do – I sped past them. I was clocking paces I wouldn’t even stick to for a 5k…but the irrational side of me said that sticking around these people “in my way” was only going to affect my race negatively! I was seriously elbow to elbow with people until at least the 5k mark.

I hit 10k in, according to my watch, 43:33…I have never run an actual 10k before, but that is FOR SURE the fastest 10k split I have ever run. And I paid for that. The last 7k of the race HURT. Real bad.

But, I want to talk also about how amazing the race was. There were 13,000 people out there – that is amazing. There were 9,000 running the marathon (it started at 7am). The night before there were 28,000 people running the 2k, 5k and 10k combined.  THAT IS REALLY COOL. There were apparently 9,000 hotel rooms booked in association with the race.

The weather was GORGEOUS. I know most people like a cool and cloudy day, but I love a warm and sunny day. And that’s what we had…and I have the sunburn to prove it (am such an idiot).

And there were spectators every inch of the route – which I LOVE!!! So many kids asking for high fives (of which I gave SO MANY!) and great cheering.
I had wanted to do sub 1:40 and I crossed the finish line with a chip time of 1:39:08 so overall, am happy. The race needs to better set up a corral system (that they enforce) and I need to learn to better control myself at the start of a race in those conditions. These are my stats for the race:
88th out of over 7300 women? I’m ok with that!! To note, my garmin that is normally dead on for races says I ran 21.3km…that means I did about 0.2km of dodging runners! 😉
Coach emailed me and was pleased with my results 🙂
Now what? Next half is in 4 weeks: Emilie’s Run
But tonight? Rest and beer.
What are your thoughts on spectators using the port-a-potties right before a race?

Have you heard of pace bunnies before?

Happy Monday!! (and a special Happy Memorial day today for my friends south of the border – take the time to REMEMBER).

2 thoughts on “Gong show of awesome!

  1. desyd

    In this post, you've hit the nail on the head of why I don't do race weekend, regarding the under policed corrals, people and the K-os/mayhem.



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