Posts Tagged ‘running’

Vancouver Sun Run (1:12)

May 19, 2010 Leave a comment

This year, I really fell off the running wagon. Working full-time really does take up a lot of time, I guess. Add in a travelling husband and not-so-suddenly, running falls to the bottom of the to-do list. I also got in my own way, as I have a habit of doing.

Because that is a LOT of people to be smushing up against

On the first Sun Run clinic day, I “ran” with the Learn to Run Faster group. We didn’t do much warm-up and just started running right away, which didn’t agree with my early-Sunday-morning body. It quickly became apparent that I should have gone with the Learn to Run group – and possibly the slowest…most beginner…is there a seniors’ group?! I tried to veer off and just go home and start fresh for next week but apparently that’s Not Allowed. Let’s just say it was a very awkward start to the clinic.

Over the next few weeks I think I finally settled into a groove somewhere near the medium LTR group. But, miss a week or two, and suddenly the confidence that comes with running FOUR minutes at a time (shut up!) with one minute intervals of walking, disappears when faced with the prospect of having to run eight minutes at a time. I’m full of excuses too. Sunday mornings in our house are just so cozy…coffee and the paper and usually still-cheerful boys.

Initially I didn’t think I was going to do the actual run at all. Mothers’ Day, too hot, too many people, more excuses. Near the end after I’d all but officially “dropped out”, I somewhere along the line joined the group of participants. In fact, I think I was just told “you’re doing it”, and somehow unlike the weekly clinics I simply obeyed orders.

Over the few weeks preceding the run I ditched the excuses (and my run buddy: sorry, Bradley Cooper), and simply hit the treadmill 3-4 times a week. With a 30 minute limit I wasn’t even hitting 5K, so I still wasn’t so sure about trying the clinic…

The night before the Sun Run I did almost back out, but I didn’t want to make a big deal. That was my goal for this year: Don’t make a big deal. I was kind of mad that last year’s protestors and crowds got in my head at all. Don’t make a big deal. So I didn’t.

This year’s run was completely different. Whether it was because of timing or because we came into the downtown core a different way, I’m not sure, but the crowds were tolerable. The vibe was completely different. Instead of protestors, at the start and all through the race, there was only happy little cheerleaders and husbands holding up “HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY” signs.

While the weather made it a little squinty and sweatier than average, it contributed to the happy-happy-joy-joy vibe of the day. Now I’m not saying that I floated like an eagle and didn’t ever raise the “oh-god-why” question, and that having people whip by me on my walk intervals didn’t nearly trigger a panic attack, but it was overall a good, fantastic, awesome day.

This is definitely, 100% awesome.

I did suffer a little bit of a sinus headache attack near the end (I think I was running behind someone with perfume on), but much thanks to my prepared girls, a few Advil seemed to ease the pain. And not having to enter into the crowded dungeon that was BC Place eased the pain TREMENDOUSLY. Being Mother’s Day, we tried to make it home relatively early. We walked a bit, got frappucinos at Starbucks (yes, my first frappe), and got home in time to celebrate with families.

Still not sure I’ll be back to do it again (of course I will), but I’m really glad I gave it another try.  I’m glad that I got out of my own way, at least for 1:12.

Categories: Me Tags: , , ,

Vancouver Sun Run (1:11)

April 21, 2009 Leave a comment

I’ve always felt that I take up too much room, just in general. I’m always the one to apologize when elbow bump, or to move out of the way on a crowded sidewalk. Being pregnant for half of the last five years gave me a brief reprieve (after all, it’s not *me* in the way it’s MY BABY!), but as I’ve struggled to lose the weight it’s been a challenge for me to own my personal space. I’m glad just to be here. (Can you see around me? OK.)

So crowds have never really been my scene. Which is why I was not planning to actually run the Sun Run when I signed up for the training. I see the cover of the Sun every year and I get nauseated. But I got swept along in the excitement and camaraderie plus you know I can’t stand to be left out of *anything*. On our training runs I didn’t have any major difficulties running 40 minutes straight, just shuffling along one foot in front of the other. So I figured I may actually see something through to completion, something that doesn’t happen very often lately (or really, ever in my life).

Starting off was probably the worst part. Downtown during the day has become somewhat unrecognizable to me, so I felt a little lost and claustrophobic as we moved along like cattle waiting to begin. I felt a little hemmed in by the big crowd. My girls started off at a pace that was too fast for me so I hung back and they were immediately swallowed up by the crowd. About 10 minutes in I decided to discard a layer and it proved more complicated than I thought, weaving around headphones and outer vest…I slowed to dead stop and had trouble regaining any momentum.

Running through two protestor demonstrations brought me some negative energy and I had a hard time finding my stride and pace. I seriously considered quitting at that mark, feeling that I had already failed being so far behind…but then I thought about how long it would take me to walk 6K and I got my run on. About a km later I saw an orange shirt that was actually FC, and a perfect pace song came on – and I felt connected again, and could run on the steady slow beat of the song. I tried to focus on keeping my heart rate in the 170s so that I wouldn’t have to walk.

So the last of the run was good until someone jumped over a barricade and nearly went face-first into the pavement in front of me. I instinctively recoiled and pulled something in my neck. In the final stretch I didn’t see any of the km markers, so it wasn’t until I crossed the finish line that I realized that we were done. I swam along with the crowds until I realized I had no idea where anyone was, which resulted in a number of confused texts and phone calls between me and my girls.

I was still disappointed in myself for what I considered failing. Not that my time was slow or that I walked so much, but more that I didn’t get the runner’s high or the excitement and energy. I kind of felt like an imposter. I hate running, but I thought somehow I would fall under the magical spell of the love of running, or that I really would “feed off the energy of the crowd”. Mostly I just felt in the way of the real runners.

So I’m not sure if I’ll ever feel like a “real” runner, or if I’ll ever do another 10k, but the 736 calories I burned is enough motivation to keep me going. Along with my super-supportive friends, of course. Without them I would have quit around week 5 and never seen that finish line that I didn’t even see!

Categories: Me Tags: ,