Race Report – Hypothermic Half and Training Update

Late last month Nicola ran a half marathon “race” as part of our marathon training for Ottawa. Since the training is a long haul and sometimes you need a reward in the middle we decided to run the Hypothermic half in Saint John. We wanted a bit of swag, a medal and a night out of town…even though SJ is only an hour away.

We lucked out in a big way as the race day had light winds and was pretty mild for the end of February. Of the two hypothermic half marathons in New Brunswick held every year, SJ always has better weather. Of course you pay for it with the difficulty of the course as SJ is very hilly.

The Race

Now, we were not in any type of a hurry so when everyone else left us in the dust we were content to just run our slow pace and enjoy the day. We, however, were not in the mindset to run all of the hills; call it fatigue, call it rebellion, call it denial…whatever….we were not ready so we ended up walking a lot of the hills.

At the second water station we met a couple of our very good friends, Rod and Jo, shared a few laughs, hugs then we were on our way again. We were both wishing that we could have met them at every station as the burst of energy was awesome.

 

In the end we finished with a very slow time but honestly, based on our training, we were right where we should have been; the run just felt like a lot more work than it should have been. We did manage to arrive a few short minutes after the brunch buffet had started so we didn’t have to wait around to get fed, always a bonus to me.

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I think the photo of us after the race tell a story, we were both tired, physically but also mentally, which would be a theme for the next month up to now.

 

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Training

Our training since the half marathon has been very spotty. Both of us caught the bug going around and I got quite sick for a week, add this to a work schedule which included some weekends and we have postponed a few weekends of running. In addition, our runs during the week have also suffered. I am hopeful that as it gets warmer in combination with the later sunsets that we will get more of our intermediate runs in. Right now we are both sick once again, having caught the “boomerang” bug as it seems like a lot of people are getting sick with the same symptoms twice this winter. So, this weekend, which was supposed to be 30km, has been moved to next weekend. I managed to get 27km in last weekend and Nicola 22km, so we are not far off, it just sometimes feels like we are missing too many long runs.

Which is why I schedule us for a 16 week training plan. First, we are both masters runners, so we need more time to recover, second, the winter is a hard time to train, runs get missed, third, illness can pop in and derail your plans so it’s best to put buffers into your plan. Some may argue that such a long training cycle causes the fatigue to which I would say to each their own. This cycle has been fraught with numerous speed bumps and the longer cycle has allowed us to take breaks when we have needed them. I am not worried as it is the end of March and we will be running 30km, so with almost 2 months before our race we are in good shape.

I do hope that your training has been going along smoothly and if it hasn’t that you aren’t panicking about where you are or where you need to be, stay the course and follow your training and if you must deviate, make smart decisions.

Chris

One Foot in Front of the Other

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Running Plans for 2017

Seeing how it’s already the middle of January, I reckon it’s time to lay out my running plan for 2017; there will be new races, familiar races and a race to celebrate Canada.

Next month I will be running the hypothermic half in Saint John for the second time. When I mention that I will be running this race most people ask me if I’m nuts as this is a hilly course. The alternative would be to run in a boring industrial park in Moncton and that just seems like a waste.

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May will see myself, my partner Nicola and a host of people gather in Fredericton for its race weekend. This time around I will be running the half marathon. This will be my second or third time running this distance in Fredericton…interesting side note, this was where I ran my first half marathon in 2011.

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Later in May will be the big, destination, celebrate Canada, race for the year, the Ottawa marathon. This is one of the biggest races in Canada and with it being the 150th birthday year for Canada we expect the race to be extra special. I will be running it with my love Nicola and our good friends Rod and Joanna, the excitement will be hard to contain as the date draws near!

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Then….crickets.

Yup, I have nothing planned for a number of months aside from training. I really want to focus on my distances at the half level and lower.

In Septemeber I will be running my first trail race in Fundy national park of 10 km. This is also a hilly course but I am looking forward to mixing up my race experiences and there won’t be any mosquitos in September!

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In October Nicola and I will head to Nova Scotia to participate in the Valley harvest weekend, again over the half distance. It will be my second time at this distance and Nicola’s first crack. This year the race is celebrating it’s 25th year so we are again hopeful that the swag, which is usually quite good, will be even better! This race occurs over the Thanksgiving weekend which will give me a chance to visit my parents.

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Tentatively, I may run the new 1 mile race in Saint John in August and perhaps run the beer run again, also in August. I would like to run the 10k race in Moncton in October after a good summer/fall of training to see if I can set a new PB. I set my current PB for 10k there and really love the second half of the course.

Who knows what small races I may wake up and drive to over the summer ,however I would really love to enjoy my weekends this summer with minimal racing intrusions, so they may be few and far in-between.

Right now the spectre of winter training continues to gnaw at my brain but as the weather improves, my excitement for this year will grow.

Where are you racing this year?

Chris

One Foot in Front of the Other