True Patriot Love!

Happy Canada Day Everyone!  I hope everyone had a wonderful July the First!  My day started bright and early and at 20 degrees C.  And that was still a whole hour before my 10 KM race.  By the time we actually started the race, it was 22 degrees.  All I can say is I was so thankful for the breeze and for the shady trail.  Yes, this race was on a trail.  In Pacific Spirit National Park actually.  This is a very nice park.  And the trail was very nice to run on.  Super soft compared to pavement.  I like running on shady trails.  And my knees were very appreciative as well.  But even with the shade and breeze it was still very hot.  Pacific Spirit Park was actually on my list of hikes to do last year, but then there was a string of assaults happening around the UBC area and then there was a runner that was killed there a few years ago and so for me and Nicole, that made it a no-go zone.  I’m glad I got to run in the park.  I’m glad I got to see what the trails were like.  Because it’s back to being a no-go zone again.  Sorry.  But until the killer has been caught and the person(s) committing the assaults have been caught, I won’t be venturing into the trails.  This is the second race I’ve done out at UBC and I think this is a great area for races.  It’s certainly much more built up since the days when I used to go to school out there.  I really enjoyed this run, even though the heat was tough and even though there were a lot of uphill sections along this run.  I completed this 10 KM in 1hr and 15 min.  Yes, I know.  It seems like my time is getting longer rather than shorter.  But considering how hot it was today, the number of uphill sections and the number of times I actually went from run to walk, I was actually surprised my time was this good.  And Yes, I think this was a good time.  I am quite pleased with it.  IMG_3020This is my first time running on a trail and out of all of the races of I’ve done so far, this has by far been the hottest day as well.  Am I using this as an excuse?  I don’t think so.  I’m listing factors that I have to take into consideration for my next race i.e.  Train on hills!  Train in hot weather!  Run the route at least once, unless you make it a no-go zone!  I focused on my breathing for most of this run.  And I was actually able to stop thinking about the distance I had to run, mostly, but that was only because I kept thinking that I had to keep up with the pack, or my “chosen” pacer.  Because I had never run this route before, I actually wasn’t sure which way to go, so I picked someone to follow.  Since returning from New Zealand, this has been the fifth 10KM race that I’ve done.  And I thought I’d share some of my thoughts that ran through my head while on this particular run.  Please don’t think less of me if you were expecting insightful dialogue while on this hour long run, ’cause I’m really just talking to myself!

Don’t start out too fast!  Stay in the middle of the pack!  Pick someone you can follow so you don’t get lost in the park!  Don’t get lost in the park!  Breathe!  You’re Breathing too hard!  Thank goodness for the shade!  Wow the forest smells great!  She’s got a purple shirt!  I’ll follow the purple shirt!  The sign says watch out for the rocky section!  Rocks!  Breathe!  In, 2, 3, 4!  Out, 2, ,3 ,4!  Rocks!  Water station!  Downhill!  Yay!  Breathe!  Where did purple shirt go?  Uphill!  There’s purple shirt!  This hill just keeps on going!  6km marker!  Uphill means there will be a downhill!  Hot!  Gotta walk!  Breathe!  Look up!  Run!  Pavement!  No Shade!  Boo!  Trail again!  Yay!  Downhill!  Yay!  Wow I’m going fast down this hill!  Is there another uphill?  Breathe!  Gotta walk the hill!  Breathe, 2, 3, 4!  That’s a big pile of pooh!  Hope that came from a dog!  Dumb dog walker’s didn’t clean up after their dog!  That was a big pile of pooh!  I wonder if there’s cougars in this park?  Purple shirt is running again!  Don’t lose sight of purple shirt!  I can do this!  3 km marker?  WTF?  We’re sharing the route with the 5 KM runners!  OHHHHH!  That mean’s only 2 KM left!  That’s 5 laps around the track!  I can do this!  OH MAN!  Their packing away the route signs!  Was I really that slow?  Too many walk breaks!  Well at least I finished!  Finish strong!  I hate that saying.  I can finish strong!  I’ll just do better next time!  Hey!  I think that clock said 1:15:09.  NICE!!!!!  I need coconut water!

I started the day surrounded by a sea of red at the beginning of the race.  The sea of red all sang the national anthem in English, French and English and then we went on a race through a gorgeous park with unknown animals dwelling within!  I finished the race amongst a sea of red and as I went in search of my much needed coconut water, I was greated with a hot dog, watermelon, and birthday cake!  A fantastic birthday party for a great country!  Happy Birthday Canada!IMG_3023

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