Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Midsummer Night's 30K Race

I had signed up for the Midsummer Night's Run in January knowing that this distance would help me prepare for the full marathon in the October. Up until the race, I had never run more than 22 kilometres.

I had registered for this race a few years ago but downgraded to walking the 15K because of injuries. This year I was pumped and excited to tackle the 30 kilometre distance.

My commemorative "Mortal Pin" for the total
distance I've completed
I had started carb loading mid week as I wanted to make sure I had enough fuel to get me through the race. My run buddy came over the night before to pick up her bib and have a few drinks with me. We figured the race was the next evening, so a few glasses of wine would be fine. Plus, it helped with our nerves as we planed our outfits and game plan for the race.

This race was an evening race, so I wasn't quite sure what to do. I decided to try to eat clean throughout the day and not eat anything greasy as it would probably upset my stomach. I was also trying to detox from the wine from the night before.

The race was moved to Toronto Island this  year due to construction on the originally planned course. We set out early to head downtown to park the car and over to catch the ferry to the Island. It's a good thing we got there early as it was PACKED with people who were going over to run the race as well as people who were just heading to the island for the day. 

It was a gorgeous evening for the race. As soon as we docked, we dashed for the closest washrooms and got changed for the race.  After asking a few volunteers, we found the start line and placed ourselves in the pace groups that we were hoping to finish in. I was a ball of nerves. I had never run this distance before and was so afraid that my legs would give out. My stomach was in knots, but it was too late. I decided that I was going to finish no matter what it took out of me.

Our Before shot
I placed myself with in the 3:15 pace group and hoped for the best. I was not sure how long it would take me to finish the 30K, but I was really hoping for a 3 hour finish. When the gun went off, I took off with a good steady pace, but also knowing that I had to really pace myself to last the entire distance. I had also decided to only carry gels and depend on the water stations for water. I caught up with the 3:00 pace group in the first 5 kilometres and stuck with them for a little while, but the group was rather large, so I picked it up a bit and found 2 lovely ladies that were running at a good steady pace and stuck with them for most of the race.

Gorgeous view of the lake
"Toronto Seawall"
The race info had said that we would be running on several different surfaces and to "BE PREPARED!" As you can see from my photo above, we ended up running on a wooden boardwalk along the beautiful waterfront. The view was great but I can't say the same about the wooden planks. Every time another runner stepped on a plank it would bounce. We also ran on pavement, grass and some sand. I guess I can't say I wasn't forewarned. 

The layout of the race was basically a few loops of the island. I actually ran on that wooden boardwalk 3 times. Thank goodness with each loop, there were fewer runners. I kept a steady pace between 5:30 and 6:00 km/hour.  Somehow around the 15 km mark, I lost both my elastics holding my pigtails together. I spent the most part of the next few kilometres asking every female volunteer for and elastic. Finally my "elastic" fairy came to my rescue, a course marshal at the 25km mark tossed me her elastic as I ran by her. She definitely made my race. I would almost consider that a wardrobe malfunction. I have learned that I will always run with extra elastics on my wrists.

Caught checking my pace

After the second loop of the island, I ran up to a split where the race marshals asked if we were at the 22 or 29 kilometre mark. I sadly was only at the 22 mark and knew that I had to do 1 more final loop. ARGH!!!  My Garmin said 2:09, so I knew that if I picked up my feet, I could get my sub 3:00 finish. So, I dug deep for the last few kilometres. Grabbed my last gel, sucked it back and gave it all I had.

My Huge Medal
2:52 Finish
My Splits from my Garmin

5.03 km   - 29:32
10.09 km - 1:00
15 km      - 1:28
20.16km  - 1:58
25.06 km - 2:25
30 km      - 2:52
Gunning for the finish

Have a great weekend.

Thanks for reading... feel free to say hello and leave a comment.

How do you prepare nutritionally for a night race?

Do you carry water for your races?

What do you like to use for fuel during races or long runs?

I love their Race Shirt and the back said
"Mind over Matter"

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