On Sunday, Mike and I ran our first 10K, and it was so much fun! We’d already gotten our race kits in advance, as locals are required to do, so we just had to show up shortly before our start time (9AM). We drove up to the start line because it was only 20 minutes away, while taking the TTC would have taken about an hour. I was a bit worried about finding parking, since the race website warned it might be a problem with the 25,000 participants that day, but turns out it was no trouble at all! We parked a few blocks away in a near-empty lot, since we figured we’d lucked out and the closer lots would be full. When we walked up though, the parking lot right next to the start line still had some empty spots!
Everything was pretty well organized, and we didn’t have any trouble figuring out where we needed to be. We got lined up, managed to find my co-worker, Joanne, and were ready to go. We really lucked out with the weather, since during the week the forecast had warned of rain and maybe even thunderstorms. We ended up with a nice, sunny, but not too hot day. I heard from someone that ran in a later wave that it was super humid, but we didn’t find it humid at all, so I think we really lucked out with near-perfect conditions. The breeze as we approached the lake near the finish line was so wonderful.
As I’d mentioned, my goal was to finish in under 60 minutes, but I wasn’t honestly sure that I’d be able to do it. On most of my casual training runs, I was coming in at over 30 minutes for 5K, so it didn’t quite add up, but still, I was determined. My official time was 58:51! Woohoo!
I didn’t struggle too much physically or mentally during the race, but I definitely did feel my legs start to tire around the 8K mark. My sister and her bf came out to cheer us on and we conveniently ran by her bf’s condo, so they got to see us run by at the 7K mark, and then they came and met us at the finish, too. It was so fun to have them cheering us on, since overall there weren’t a whole lot of spectators on the course. There are a couple designated cheer spots, but most people were just at the end, so a lot of the race was almost eerily quiet. My favourite signs were “Your legs will forgive you” and “Worst. Parade. Ever.” haha.
I was keeping my eye on my pace throughout the race, so by the halfway mark I knew I was cutting it a bit close for hitting my sub-60 goal. I knew that if I didn’t get in under 60 minutes, it would probably only be by a minute or two, so I really didn’t want to let that happen. I wanted to do whatever I could to achieve that goal if it was at all possible. I knew I was going to feel good about finishing, but I knew I would feel great if I hit my sub-60 goal. So I didn’t stop for water or walk at all. Even though I’d run a 10K distance before, I’d never run it 100% without stopping because of the usual streetlights and all, so I felt pretty proud of that, too.
Mike took of on a sprint in the last 100 or so meters, so I ran as hard as I could. I wasn’t able to catch up to him, but I did run so hard that I definitely felt like puking the moment I crossed the finish line. But the feeling passed, and I felt pretty good, and not too sore for the rest of the day. We took a nice long walk in the afternoon, and I stretched a little, so I’m feeling pretty good today. A little stiff, but nothing major. I’m playing volleyball tonight though, so I’m not sure I have much hustle left in me.
It was really fun running the race with Mike and Joanne. We left Joanne behind somewhere around 6K when she stopped for a water break because of my sub-60 goal (and we’re jerks!), but it really helped to have friends to run with. Mike was really funny during the race because he was all, “I’m never running a race again” and then after we finished he said, “ok, maybe I’d run another 5K or 10K sometime” and then by the evening he was wondering when the next race was! I’d like to run another couple races this summer, but my big goal is going to be the Scotiabank Half Marathon in October. While 10K wasn’t too painful yesterday, running that two times over and then some seems pretty crazy right now. But so did running a 10K!