Saturday, May 4, 2013

Race Report: MEC Calgary 15k (May 2013)

In hindsight, perhaps scheduling two races in less than two days and expecting to run fast in both while battling anemia MAY not have been the brightest plan...but this Goofy Gal did it anyway.  And lived to tell the tale.

Today was yet another of the fabulous $15 MEC races - this one out of Shouldice Park.   I do love that they are taking the chance with each race to introduce us to a new park.   It's a refreshing change.

I didn't sleep well last night but was still up and on the road by 7:30 to head into the city.  I decided to wear my new Chick'd Capris and the One More Mile singlet I bought at the Goofy expo. I was a bit worried that the tank would be too warm since it is a bit thicker, but despite the heat - it stayed dry the whole time...except when I spilled water on it.  The capris were perfect.  So comfortable and didn't budge for the entire race - first time I've ever had that happen.  Usually I am yanking at my pants for half the race.

It took me a bit to figure out the parking at the park but soon I was settled and on my way over to the start, munching on my pre-race Larabar the whole way.   I was meeting JS and I knew Michelle was also running one of the races so I was on the lookout for them both in the staging area.  The sun was so bright that it was blinding me.  and the day was already heating up.
So my defence, I couldn't see my screen
 in the sun so had no clue how this would turn out...

 I passed right by Michelle and, luckily she saw well enough to grab me.

Soon, JS had joined us as well. Michelle snapped this one on my phone so we could showcase our snazzy race outfits...

It wasn't long before they had us warming up.  The great thing about the MEC races is that the pre-race warmups are WAY more geared at runners than most races who just bring in a local aerobics instructor.  I won't even do those, but I am happy to warm up with the MEC guy.

It was a staged start so the 15k people got to go first. With the other distances leaving 5 and 10 mins later.  We said goodbye to Michelle and headed over to the start.  We knew we weren't likely to be a speedy as some of the guys there so we seeded ourselves back a ways...turns out we made a perfect choice.

And then we were off.

The race course ran east from Shoudice, past Edworthy and down to Crowchild Bridge...the 15k people crossed the bridge and then turned west for a couple of kms before turning around and heading back.

JS and I were clipping along at a pace that wasn't all-out for me but still meant conversation was a bit of a struggle.   My goal was to only walk at aid stations, to take a bite of my larabar at 5k and 10k and to hopefully beat my previous 15K PB of 1:52 (totally and easily do-able).

My legs were definitely feeling the 5k race on Thursday night and did a fair bit of protesting.  But we were in this for fun and decided to just mellow the pace as necessary.

Once we were past the 5k point and the 10k runners were headed back, we zipped across the bridge and then I had the brilliant plan to try to get some mid-race shots of us since I haven't had any mid-race pics lately.

I actually think my form doesn't look too bad here.
Too bad I slopped water down my front right before the shot...
Then we plowed on to the turn around...and, before we knew it, we were on out way back.

47 mins at the turnaround...if we could keep it up - we would definitely be wiping out my previous PB.  We started to count race bibs to see how many people were behind us...I think we counted 7 or 8.  It became a new goal to keep them behind us. (and to Katie, you'll love this...we managed to keep Mr. Stinky back there too)

The return trip had a fair few walk breaks as my legs protested louder and louder.  But I tried to keep them minimal so we could keep going forward.  At one point we passed Leigh, who was out for her long run.  I was pretty tired at that point so only really managed to grunt a quick "hi" as we passed.

Just when I thought the legs wouldn't keep moving, we were in the homestretch and on pace for sub-1:40.  We could see the clock as we approached the finish and it said 1:38...goal became to make it not say 1:39 before we crossed.

And that, my friends, is how I set a new PB for the 15K distance...besting my old one by about 14 minutes! It does feel good to be smashing my PBs this year!

Chip time: 1:38:29

Tired but done
By the time we made it in, the staging area  almost everyone else had cleared out.  JS got the last water (I had water in the car so I was fine) and we grabbed a couple of Clif Bars for the road before hightailing it out.  We had coffee to enjoy.

Garmin Geekery:

NICE!  Only 2kms where I was over 7min/km pace

Oh LOOK!  There was a cat hiding in the elevation...


  1. Great job!! You are just knocking off those PBs! Nice day for a race too.

  2. Thanks for coming out and great job on the new PB!! See you in June!


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