Sunday, March 17, 2013

Race Report: 2013 CRR St Patrick's Day Road Race 5k

Oh, where to about with the costume.

Last year was the first year I ran this particular race.  We dressed up and had such a fun race.  So much fun, in fact, that it was the one race we REALLY decided would need to become a permanent fixture on the annual race calendar.

And this year - we were raring to go and trying to plan our costumes.  Initially, I figured I could rework our tutus from last year, but the more tulle I added, the less I was feeling the tutu.  It just wouldn't be conducive to the PB I hoped to achieve.

I needed something new.

So, with only 3 days to spare before the race, I was on the hunt for something for JS and I to wear.  Luckily my hunt didn't take long.  I was wandering through Walmart one day and happened up on some lightweight swim coverup skirts.  They didn't come in green, but the black would be awesome and I could adorn them with bright green shamrock stickers.

When I was done decorating - they almost looked like belly dancing skirts.  Very light.  Very cute.  and totally capable of PB busting.

The skirt was taken care of...and the rest of the costumes could be filled out from my newly acquired bag of St Paddy's tricks also known as a Lululemon bag full of dollar store props)

Our costumes were going to rock.

Then there was the weather forecast.

Last Wednesday was a truly lovely day but, unfortunately, the weather took a turn for the much worse after that.   Cold.  Snow. Wind.  It was all on the menu.  Another blast of nasty ol' Alberta winter for us.  (As though we hadn't had quite enough for the last 5.5 months)

And this morning, it was super nasty.  Wind howling around my house.  A text from JS telling me to leave early because the roads were especially bad.   So cold.  So snowy. So windy.

But I've run in worse - so I had a race to get to.

The Race.

After an almost sleepless night and then battling the roads into the city - I was feeling surprisingly good.  I thought maybe...just maybe...I might be able to do it.

I met up with JS and T and we got our costumes all polished up in the change room at Central Memorial.  We looked AWESOME!

I got a text from Leana and we quickly arrange to meet up for second before the race. Of course, in that meeting we were silly and didn't snap a pre-race pic before we wished each other luck and headed to the start line.

The three of us did a little pre-race photo shoot.

I totally didn't realize T's eyes were closed in this shot :(

Dontcha love my green socks?  I'm in love.

and then we were off.  That's the thing about racing when it's super cold - you never end up heading to the start line too early.

The race starts with a nice downhill before sharply becoming a long uphill.  I took off like a rocket down that hill - feeling good and I love downhills. The road was covered in a an icy slush and as soon as the uphill started, any time bank I made on the downhill was lost.  I just couldn't gain traction.  JS and T passed me and I started to trudge through the slush.  As I turned the first corner, I was hit ful blast by the wood smoke from someone's chimney.   It completely choked me.  But I had found my footing as the course flattened out for a bit and I plowed through to escape the smoke. Shortly after the 2k mark, I hit the long downhill behind the Glenmore Trail wall.  I barrelled down the hill, hoping to make up the time I would lose coming back up that hill after the turnaround.

As I approached the turnaround, JS and T passed me on their return trip.   The wind was in my face and I could scarcely gasp out a hi to them as I picked up speed through the turnaround.   After I was through the turn - my glasses completely fogged. And didn't thaw for the rest of the race.    Through the fog, I could see Leana going the other way and waved to her.

Having fogged up glasses made the return trip really hard.  I can't see withut them and certainly not well enough to navigate icy i had to content myself with swiping my thumbs across the lenses regularly to diminish the fog a bit.  When I passed the 3k mark, I took a really short walk break before going back up the hill.

At the 4k mark, I had to accept that my PB was out of reach.   It was 24 mins in.  No way could I run the last K in 6 mins in these conditions.  I just had to finish and be happy with however I did.

So I carried on.  Soon, I was at the final downhill (then uphill) to the finish.  I tried to really push it down that hill, but I lost traction on the uphill and crossed the finish line seconds over 33 mins.

  • Chip time: 33:04
  • 21/59 Age group
  • 72/192 Women
  • 134/281 Overall  
JS and T were there to cheer me across (though I wouldn't have blamed them if they'd headed in for warmth and food)

Before we went into the school, we stopped at my buddy Neil's photo booth for a finish line shot. Don't we look frosty? This was right after I crossed.  My glasses are still foggy!

And then it was all about the food...and the dress-up photo booth

I couldn't stay long since my girlies had a birthday party to get to, but the food was just as amazing as last year (though I skipped the veggie chili and enjoyed my scone, coffee and lucky charms immensely)

Now I just need to do to things...find another 5k for PB busting...and start planning the costumes for next year.

The Garmin Geekery:


  1. Good job on the race. I don't think many people PRed on that course today. The conditions were brutal.

  2. Great job, love love love that skirt. What a great idea! Bummer the weather didn't cooperate. So glad my race was Saturday and not Sunday because Sunday here was NASTY windy and snowy and COLD!

  3. Congratulations on your race! I loved your costume, it was very cute! Next year I need to hit up the Dollar Store for some accessories.

    Yesterday was not a day to PR. I found it really difficult to run through the snow. I had the same problem as you because my glasses got seriously fogged up. I was wearing my sunglasses and had to push them up on the top of my head.

    Hopefully you are able to find another 5K soon to cross that PR off your list. The spring trio is a nice race (and the site of my sub 30 5K PR)!

  4. Looks like a fun day! I love the idea of having a photo booth at a race too!


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