Tuesday, June 22, 2010

K-100 Race Report

Saturday was my first race of the season...exciting yet depressing at the same time...I can't believe it...i'm so late starting this year because of my foot. But guess what...the race turned out great and I had zero pain whatsoever during the run and even afterwards it was just a little stiff but no big deal at all. I'm so happy and relieved, what a great day! This means there are definitely more races in my future this summer, wahoo!!

Ok, on to the good stuff. I arrived at the start of Leg 7 way early because last year I arrived a bit late to the start of my Leg and didn't want a repeat of that. I barely had enough time to use the bathroom before my teammate had arrived and it was time for me to go! I do like arriving early but saturday was a bit too early...if I had known, I would have brought a book! There's no cell service where I was either so I occupied my time with a few games on my iphone. I was feeling sleepy and even dozed for a bit. Finally more and more people arrived so I figured it was time I get my running gear on and get psyched! The sun was out and it was starting to get hot. I was feeling pretty anxious waiting around and wondering when our runner would come along!

I was feeling nervous as I haven't raced since October and have been injured ever since so I have had majorly inconsistant "training" until recently. When Tanya arrived (our Leg 6 runner), I took off fast...way too fast...what was I thinking? I couldn't help it though! I felt great and it was a rediculous downhill for the first 4-5 km so I took full advantage! It felt effortless to hit 4 min/km and I was loving every minute of it! At about 5km was the start of a hill, which seemed to go on forever...it was only 2km but it felt like forever to me! I was impressed that I flew up the first part of it feeling good...then it flattened and turned into a bigger hill. That was where the suck happened...I was still feeling strong initially but all of a sudden it started raining and I was running into a gross headwind. I immediately felt like ass. I cursed myself for going out too fast...rookie mistake!...and just allowed myself to slow down...and then finally I crested the hill and it was flat once again.

Up to about the 11km mark it rained and was super cold...my arms and legs started to go numb but I actually felt pretty good. I was relieved it wasn't hot out there and preferred these conditions anyday! My teammates in the support vehicle brought out a longsleeve for me but I decided i'd rather keep going as is. Even though the weather was kind of gross for part of my leg...I soaked up the amazing scenery out there...wow, Kananaskis is so beautiful. I ran into Blaine (another fellow Newfie and ran Transrockies last year as well) before the start of my leg and he had said he thought Leg 7 was the most scenic of them all. I think he was right! I just wish I had some pictures to show!

Anyhow, I took a gel at about 11km and it gave me a huge kick in the ass...suddenly I felt great again and my last 5km flew by. I kept surprising myself with the pace I was able to hold...and really relieved that I wasn't going to let my team (or myself) down. The last 2km had a lovely downhill to lead me into the finish and I just let my legs go. I was hurting but it felt great! I ended up finishing the 16.5km in 1:15:29. Not too bad. Bring on some real training again and speedwork. I can't wait! Man I love to race!

Our team did awesome! And I can't wait to do it again next year! We finished 3rd out of 28 in the Mixed category and 21st out of 164 teams overall.

Friday, June 18, 2010

First (and hopefully not last) Race of the Season!

A year has flown by since I ran in the K-100 relay last year and i'm back to do it again tomorrow! Because I was training for a ton of trail stuff last year, including Transrockies, I had opted to do Leg 5 which is the hardest leg of the relay so I could work on my hill training! It was pretty tough indeed and I happily refrained from volunteering for that leg this year! Here is my race report from last year in case you missed it!

I wasn't sure for a long time that I'd be able to run it this year because my foot has been giving me problems for such a long time. But i'm happy to say it's doing quite well lately and although my fitness is nowhere near where it was last year, my team still wants me so I said that the best I could do would probably be 5 min/km (~ 8 min/mile) for the 16.5km that is Leg 7...one reason is because of my inconsistant running/"training"...and the other reason is because I don't want to kill myself racing and risk hurting my foot...and screw up my chances of running the rest of the summer and training for the NYC marathon in the fall.

Here are the stats of the leg below and while the profile pretty much makes it look like a piece of cake since it's all downhill, i'm not so sure. With any luck I will find it fairly easy and maybe all the downhill will help me run a faster time...guess you'll just have to wait for my race report next week! Wish me luck!

START: Roadside turnout 860m past the service road at the top of a small hill.
DISTANCE: 16.5 km
PACE: 6:06 per mile
DESCRIPTION: The drop from the Highwood Pass continues through the first 5 km with a 170m loss of elevation. The last 11.5 km are moderately hilly with a further overall elevation loss of 90m. The course has now entered the Kananaskis Valley. The surface is older asphalt.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Beautiful K-Country!

Last weekend, Andrew and I went camping with some of his friends down in K-Country in Peter Lougheed Provincial Park. While everyone had plans to go fishing on Saturday...Logan and I had other plans...we were going trail running, wahoo! I decided since it was a bit of a warm day for a husky (18 degrees) that we would run around Upper Kananaskis Lake (16km) which is pretty flat and we can pretty easily go down to the lake for him (us) to cool off!

Unfortunately Logan doesn't know how to pace himself as he likes to take off and go balls out for as long as he can. By about the halfway point he was getting tired and I realized this run was going to take a lot longer than I had intended! We stopped lots to take pics and for him to cool off a bunch. I was pretty happy when we saw Andrew at the parking lot when we were just over 14km as Logan was so beat that I had already decided we were going to walk the last 2km to where the guys were fishing. Turns out fishing had not been so good and everyone else had gone back a half hour or so earlier and Andrew had to wait for me.

I had an awesome day out there though and vow from now on to not put my dog through torture like that again...only if it's a cool and a non-sunny day! I think he prefers hiking anyway :) Here are some of pretty pics from our run around Upper Kananaskis Lake!

I heart Yosemite!

Over 2 weeks ago now, Andrew and I took a short trip down to San Francisco...with most of our time spent on a little road trip from there to Yosemite for a few days of camping...with a stop in Santa Cruz along the way. Upon arriving to SF, we discovered it was Memorial Day long weekend in the States...oops. I always thought our May long weekends happened at the same time...dang. It definitely made things difficult...especially when we hadn't reserved any places to camp etc...but we lucked out a few times. Fewf! Since it was a while ago now, I feel like just having a photo blog of our trip so enjoy!