I decided to participate in this event to (A) support women's races in Toronto, (B) get my hands on the Lululemon tech shirt and (C) pace my friend "L" for (hopefully) her first sub-30:00 5K.
This race was held at the same location as the Toronto Women's Half Marathon, Sunnybrook Park. Once again, the event was well-organized, well-executed and well-supported.
We arrived on-site early and had plenty of time to mill about and catch up with some friends who were also there. It was great chatting with happy go lucky alex (whom I met for the first time last weekend at the 30K) before and after the race. I also got to meet MacNic for the first time after chatting back and forth via blogs and twitter for several months. And, of course, my BFF Sarah who walked the 5K just 2.5 weeks post partum!
L caught me after a quick last-minute pit stop.
Soon it was time to line up. Check out the green race shirts! Awesome.
I have to say, it was really nice lining up for a race without any nerves. I was relaxed and ready to have fun (and see how hard I could push L).
And we were off! I don't know why, but I really love this pic.
We followed the paved park trails and stayed right on pace. L was doing great! She had debated a 10&1 run to walk ratio, but we ended up running almost the entire way.
The famous firefighter's water station came around the 3K marker. The guys were wearing volunteer t-shirts this year (they were shirtless at the half), so L decided it wasn't worth slowing down or stopping. Heh.
L was starting to struggle, but I urged her on and kept reminding her that we were more than half way there. I tried not to yap too much because when I'm exhausted I usually don't want anybody talking to me. :) She held on really well and only took a teeny tiny walk break after the last hill.
Once we passed the 4K marker, she picked it up. I knew we were right on target for her sub-30, but L had started swearing at this point (it was pretty amusing). She thought she was going to puke, but I told her she could puke at the finish line. Finally, we saw it and she sprinted all the way home. In the end, our final kilometre was the fastest.
Here we are on the home stretch. Don't mind the white dot where L's head should be = she's pretty private. :) Check out my usual inefficient lean-back finish line form. Ugh. (L was in better shape than the lady in front of us!)
Chip time - 29:41
My first time as a personal pace bunny was a success!
She did it! When I saw the clock I was absolutely ecstatic! I eased back to snap a photo of L crossing the line. It's blurry, but you can see the clock. Official time was sub-30:00 as well. Way to go, L!
The awesome Emily aka AddictedToEndorphons was at the finish line so I had to snap a photo! Thanks for volunteering, Em!
We got some water and grub (pitas, bananas, dried apples, tortilla chips and chocolate) and snapped a few photos.
It was a great morning!
Tomorrow's long run is a fall-back to 25K/15.5mi. (Why does that seem so short?) After the run we're having our third brunch and a pool party! Sounds like my kind of Sunday.
Enjoy the rest of the weekend!
(Don't forget to enter Tall Mom on the Run's awesome giveaway for her 200th post.)