I headed over on an early ferry before the race, thanks to Sport BC for the ferry vouchers. I then had the job of locating the race. Last year I carpooled with Lucy Smith and a few other runners. Lucy simply set up her GPS and I paid no attention as to where she was going. It's different when you are in the drivers seat and without GPS. I google mapped the directions at work the night before and unfortunately the route took me along 0 ave (I think) which was right along the border of Canada/USA. It was also a very annoying road with raised intersections ever 400m or so. Although BC's aren't in Aldergrove next year, note to self not to take that road again!
I arrived in plenty of time before the race. The first race (masters men and women) was just starting. I took some photos and hung around, spoke with some of the high school athletes I knew and watched one of my NDSS girls race (congrats Miryam on your age 15 win).
# for the race
The first hill on the course! Much steeper in person!
They make you run down the side and then up again (behind the trees)
Before I knew it, we were on the start line.
Surprisingly, I wasn't as nervous as I thought I would be. I think that was a good thing. It was the same in Eugene back in May 2010 when I ran my 1:21:55 half marathon PB. I wasn't nervous before that one either. I just ran how I felt on the day. Today was the same. I went out with the crowd and made sure it wasn't too fast. The hills the first time felt hard, but still okay. I was sitting in 12th most of the race.
Start of the 3rd and final lap
Before the 1st hill
Down the hill
Up the 2nd hill and pulling a nasty face (I think my nose was running as usual)
While initially I thought I was 10th and was happy with how I ran, it turns out I was actually 11th (9th person from BC). Slightly more disappointed, but in the end I am thrilled with how I handled the race. I made an improvement on my time from last year, though the course was slightly different. I held my distance behind some competitors from last year and that made me proud, considering the year I have had.
Mar, Me, Becky and Mel (Post race)
As I stated after the race, I am simply happy to be out racing again. I feel as though I raced the course better than last year and I felt stronger than I have in ages. I felt stronger than pre injury so that was a good sign.
After the race, we cooled down in a big group and then I booked it off to Surrey for a quick shower and then out to dinner for my brother's (half brother technically) 40th birthday dinner. I had to skip the cake after though, as I then booked it from Surrey to Horseshoe Bay for the 9pm ferry, which was the last one back to Vancouver Island for the night. In the end it was a long day, but very successful. Up next, National XC on Nov 26th.
Congrats on Hilary on her win. Results found here.
Photo credit (Copyrighted ones) to Vid Wadhwani