The one about race day…

The race is tomorrow.

I did a trial 5K Thursday and it went better than I had been expecting. I finished in 32:49. Now, for those who are runners that might seem like a really slow time but for me that is about top speed! 😛 If slow running was a sport, I’d win gold.

It was actually a pretty comfortable run. I went on the track at my gym, I started to get a little tired about three quarters of the way in but I pushed through it and really managed to pick up the pace for the last four laps. I’m going to try another one today, early enough that it won’t make me too tired for tomorrow.

The thing I worry about the most for tomorrow’s race is mostly the course – it’s not easy. There has been a lot of criticism in years past that organizers have made the races (5K, 10K, half and full marathon) too “elite” and challenging for the average runner. Marathoners have had issues with a very lengthy steep downhill section while the 5K and 10K runners have had the opposite problem – very steep uphill.

This year they have changed the routes around, moved the start and finish and tried to make everyone happy.

I remember when I first saw the breakdown of the new 5K route how my heart started pounding just a little bit harder than it should have…

Turn left across Trollope Street and Ahern Avenue and head to the north entrance of Citadel Hill. YES, YOU’RE RIGHT, WE SAID CITADEL HILL!!!
TIPS FOR THE HILL: approaching, whether running or walking, the best strategy is to maintain your effort. This means you can expect your pace to slow down, but the effort exerted remains constant. The Hill is steep so shorten your stride and keep your shoulders relaxed. Enjoy the vista at the top and the downhill on your return.
Going up the Hill, staying on the right hand side of the hill with the cones on the left!
Turn right at the top and complete one full loop of Halifax Citadel, the most visited National Historic Site in Canada. Enjoy the best views the city has to offer!
Once completing the loop, turn right down the north roadway (the same road you came up)

This is my route map: http://www.bluenosemarathon.com/ckfinder/userfiles/files/map%205%20km%202012%20-%20F(1).pdf

The marathon has been changed slightly to get rid of the steep downhill, it’s now a street that has a more gradual decline and amazing views of our Naval dockyard. The flip side is that they have to go up a street known as “Giv’er Hill” at around the 15K mark. I almost got an apartment on that street but didn’t because I thought it would be too hard on my car to go up and down that hill – that’s how steep it is for about 500 metres. I could not do it, I don’t know how the thousands of people who are running tomorrow can! I have so much respect for their abilities.

I look forward to the moment that the announcer yells my name as I cross the finish line. It might only be 5K but this is kind of a huge deal for me. Next year when I do the 10K I’ll feel the same. 🙂

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