date completed: 19 October 2014
Oh my goodness. Let me just preface this entry saying that I did start training for this back in early August (using the Coach feature on Nike+), and then I went on my trip to Portugal & Spain, got sick, hosted a friend visiting Toronto, etc…. and I just never really got back into preparing properly for this race. :|
The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon (STWM) is a huge annual event consisting of a weekend long running expo and a flat and fast 5k / half-marathon / full marathon course. I registered early for the half marathon and paid $75 plus tax and fees to participate. Race kit pick-up was at the back of the running expo and an impressively smooth process. I also walked around and sampled the power gels and drinks some of the booths were offering. I looked through the goodies when I arrived at Stella’s place and loved the navy blue souvenir shirt! The red bag has also been proving itself useful to me.
Race day came (exactly a month ago from the posting of this blog entry!) and the place was absolutely packed with people! Neither of us brought a bag to check in to save ourselves a bit of the hassle and time. Stella has long been my running buddy but neither of us were really in good shape so we ran more slowly than usual and concentrated on just finishing without injuring ourselves or having to walk. I had a couple of sugary fruit bars I purchased at the race expo in my pocket for during the race, which helped us both out some. We also got water and Gatorade from the stations on route and made the poor decision to try a power gel that was new to both of us at one station. We chatted most of the way through and amused ourselves with all of the amazing signs spectators and volunteers made to cheer on all the runners. Having upbeat, high energy spectators and volunteers around you really makes a big difference! There was a stretch around I think 16-19km that was fairly empty in terms of other runners and spectators and the lower energy made everything seem so much longer. If I don’t come back to run this race next year, I’m definitely coming back as a spectator with a fun sign!
We capped off our race experience with a delicious brunch at Karine’s (I guess this is becoming our go-to place for a post-race meal!). The owner is such an amazingly warm woman and congratulated us on our run. I would hurt and ache all over for the next two days.
This was such a fun race to be a part of! I definitely feel more inspired and motivated to keep running after finishing this one. I would also consider registering for another half marathon (and actually train properly for it this time!). Any race recommendations in Toronto / running tips / fun races you’ve participated in?