Edmonton Marathon August 20, 2017

I added Edmonton as a last long training run for the Thames Path 100k in 3 weeks.  This meant I hadn't specifically marathon trained.  I am definitely not capable of pulling a good race out of my bottom with no training.  Actually, even with great training I frequently can't.  So, let's get going.

The race has 2 out and backs from the start/finish line so I'll break it down into quarters.

First 1/4

The sky is overcast but it's still warm (though not too warm) it's literally perfect running weather.  There's a small field of marathon runners (around 700), so I slot in at the back and watch Roger start his 100th marathon.  We follow the upper river path for a lot of the race, the road is closed and it's extremely pleasant.  I'm very near the back but meh, it doesn't matter.  Focus on making the turnaround.  We pass the elites zooming back the other way, a welcome diversion.

Pet me!
To halfway

At 11k a volunteer runs alongside me for a bit with a cowbell, she's awesome.  Everyone on this course has a kind word or encouragement for you.  Hey! A kitty!  I get some bonus pets, I think this is a marathon first.

By 16k I'm regretting the shot blocks I had, from here to the half point I have no idea how I'm going to keep going.  I'm too dizzy and nauseous to run.  I shove down a gel since that's all I can think to do and keep pushing on slowly.  Shit.

To 3/4

I pass over the start/finish line at 2:47 while the faster halfers are finishing in the opposite direction (they started an hour later than us).  It's quite surreal since I've been mostly alone on the course and now there's a TON of people whizzing past.  I feel like I'm going the wrong way.  At this point my sense of humour kicks back in and I find it really funny so I guess the gel worked.  I spot another kitty, and get even more pets.  This is great.  I decide I'm going to finish this race no matter how long it takes - there's a 7 hr cutoff on the course.

Final 1/4

I've been doing walk/run intervals since halfway and my goal now is to come in under 6 hours.  The air is so fresh, it just seems like a wonderful day to be out running.  Despite being considerably far back in the field, not once do the volunteers make me feel like I'm keeping them out, there's always plenty water/electrolytes/chews and the Lulu squad is still jumping up and down and having a party.

Out of nowhere there's a piper, my god it's wonderful.  There's also watermelon from a lovely lady watching the race, it is so good.  Real food during a run is the best thing ever.

All done at 5:52, marathon #10 is in the books.  Thank you for the love Edmonton.

And the bling.

And also brunch!

FYI Roger beat me and he's 79.  I want to be Roger when I grow up.


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