Peterborough Half-Marathon…the panic before the calm.
Ahhh, Sunday morning came early. But that doesn’t really matter because the Peterborough half is the only race I’ve ever seen with a start of 12:30pm. Which for me isn’t ideal because it gave me an extra 5 1/2 hrs to panic, stress, and wander aimlessly around the house asking the dog if she thought I had packed everything?
Before I dive into the big race recap (oh anticipation!!) lemme fill you in a bit.
Here’s what I woke up to:
A giant crack in the bottom of my foot. Runners, you get me. Everyone else, gather round and let ol’ FR tell you something. Runners have abhorrent feet. Repugnant, vile…repulsive even. That’s just how we roll.
But I digress.
I was worried about the Grand Canyon that had developed SINCE SATURDAY AFTERNOON on my foot. It hurt to step on, let alone run on for a couple of hours. I poly’d it up (popped a few Valium) and hoped for the best.
That’s the view from my front door at about 8am. A few flurries?!? Weatherman, you officially suck at your job. And you owe me $60 because I would not have signed up for this DISASTER if I knew that this was your version of “a few”.
(That’s actually my fake “photo mad” face. I actually look more like this when I’m mad…)
But because I’m cheaper than I am smart, I packed my pb & banana on whole wheat and iPod, and guilted Muffin into driving me to the race start.
Of course being a local race, I left much later than I normally would and didn’t do any of my typical race day rituals. Normally I would have packed everything the night before, attached my chip and bib, had my usual long run breakfast, bought my Gu or whatev ahead of time, etc., etc. I did none of these things. I ate something different, wore something different and I bought new socks and headphones knowing that the cardinal rule of racing is “Don’t change or test anything on race day”. Total rookie moves.
So about 30 minutes before race time, there I am bolting through Shoppers to find bandaids (San Andreas fault in my foot, ‘member?) and a Fruitsource bar….dramatically rolling my eyes and sighing like a wheezy toddler at the old farts with their 38 lotto tickets in line before me. Finally after paying and announcing to Muffin how “it must be nice to be SUPER OLD and not give a rat’s ace about ANYONE ELSE!!”, we were off.
I made my way through the trillion people gathered in the foyer of the Y, so that I could pee, change my foot padding, attach my bib & chip, check my bag and eat a sandwich…all within 20 minutes of starting the run. Again, not something I normally do. I like to be early. Like “middle of the night arrival” early. But somehow, despite having an extra 5 1/2 hours, I was rushing.
Luckily for me (and the people surrounding me because I would have started kicking shins if I missed the start) I lined up behind the 1:50 pace bunny with 4 minutes to spare.
I’d love to have a dramatic kilometer by kilometer narrative to share with you, but to be honest, I really zone out when I run.
So some of the vague highlights I remember:
- “Sunday morning” by No Doubt came on my iPod and I started thinking about how it really is Sunday morning (ish).
- I embarrassed myself by flirtatiously waving at a local superstar runner/store owner (who I love) who was pacing other (faster) people. I thought he was talking to me. He wasn’t.
- I yelled out to a cop buddy who was directing traffic and then realized that might not have been cool. Perhaps a bit distracting for the guy standing amongst 8 lanes of traffic.
- After making the half-way turn around, I lost sight of the 1:50 pace bunny and never saw him again. Probably because he was running a 1:50 pace.
- The Firefighter water station was staffed by hotties. For reals. I tried to straighten my toque and wipe the snot from my nose. Why not?
- At 16km I dropped my baggie of Tylenol and didn’t go back for it. I’d have to face the rest of the race with my knee not doped up.
- The wind and snow really picked up on the way back and I got a fat snowflake in my eye. And lived to tell.
- On the Armour Rd/Hunter St hill I schooled an old gal. She passed me about 5 minutes later.
- At 18km “If you want blood” came on…I listened to it twice.
- A barefoot guy passed me and I was in awe. Then I was just annoyed. Show off.
- At 19km I told myself that the next 10 minutes were gonna hurt so just suck it up and pour it on. It worked.
When all was said and done, I finished at 1:52, which is just fine for me. That’s right on par with other races I’ve done (1:49 and 1:53 for example). As far as I’m concerned, anyone that trains, runs, or races in the winter deserves a big ol’ medal. And pancakes for dinner. I got both.
Special thanks to Muffin and Piper for cheering me on at the finish!
Next up…Kms for Care in April. Who’s in??