Wow, this one did NOT start off well. How poorly? Well, I would describe it as an absolute shitshow.
I went out with the horse girls on Saturday night to celebrate a birthday, with dinner/drinks at Swans and then some cowboy dancing at Duke’s and we had a blast!! I was good, limited my number of drinks, did some dancing, and had a nice time. They had live music and it was actually pretty fun- I am not a country fan at all and I enjoyed it.
I had my husband agree to pick me up as my designated driver and when he did, the car was lurching and jerking all over the place. EFFFFFFF!!! Not again. We have an appt to get the car looked at on Tuesday but my race was on Sunday. Would we be able to make it out to Sooke??
I worried about that all night, and I was squabbling with my husband about what time we had to leave. He said 30 minutes will be more than enough, and I was worried about the time, the car issues and we had to get gas. All of these things= takes time. A lot of time, as it turns out…
We got the car started fine, but it was jerking and lurching to the gas station. We filled up and got on the road and by that time it was like 10:18am. The car drove pretty well to Sooke but time was not on our side…We hit traffic in Langford and before we knew it, it was 10:45am and we were NOT at the school yet. I was biting my nails and freaking out…We weren’t going to make the race! I am not listening to my husband about this again! I was pretty mad.
We literally pulled up about 500 metres away from the school (the road was closed for the race, and at this point, FULL of runners at the start!) and I leapt out when the car was still rolling and sprinted to the gym. It was not close. I ran into the gym and tore over to the bib pickup guys, who were all very friendly and like heyyy what’s your rush, you’ve got 5 minutes, do you want to put your jacket down? hahaha.
Yeah, five minutes!!!
I frantically pinned my bib on, and jogged to the start which luckily was close. I started my watch and waited for 3 minutes to race…I had to pee too but that was NOT happening.
And they’re off! I started close to the front and started quick for me. The first KM was at 4:15…Faster than I can maintain. But, this course was practically designed to positive split- all downhill in the beginning, and all uphill back. Yikes!
I watched my times bounce between 4:22-4:30 or so until I hit the 5k turnaround and then the plummeted–4:45, 4:37, 5:00!!! That was a particularly long and devastating hill. I was fairly out of breath from the speedy beginning, so I focused on controlling my breathing and bringing my pace down (ha ha, yeah like I could go any slower even) so I could manage the hill better.
It sort of worked- my times were kind of a killer, but I felt more focused and in control…Not just running balls-to-the-walls. That approach meant my form was better too, and I was able to come in to the finish feeling much stronger than I thought. I kept thinking- the sooner I am done the sooner I get to use the bathroom!
The finish line was so inspirational- I love it!! There are flags for the finish chute and everyone is lined up to watch. It feels so awesome to run through it, and I have to say it’s one of my favourite finish line moments of all the race series.
My time was good but it was also the slowest 10k I have raced all year, by 10 seconds haha- gun 45:44 and net 45:40. But hey, I have had a VERY consistent season, and so I was very pleased with my effort, given how much stress and anxiety there was the evening before and morning-of.
I trotted to the bathroom straight away. And then met up with my husband and dog, and enjoyed all of the snacks Sooke had to offer. They are the best! They had sushi (?!!!) sandwiches, the most amazing brownies, #1 cookies (first place I’ll get all year haha), and Milk 2 Go.
And best of all? I checked my results and I had placed 5th/22 for my age group. YEAH! That is the best I have placed in my 10ks this year. Woop! It is a smaller race, and yes those are my time to shine….Hahaha.
Thanks to my husband for taking pictures and thanks to the VIRA folks and Sooke for putting on a fun race!