TWENTY SIX POINT TWO

Well after months and months of preparing it has come and gone. The ScotiaBank Toronto Waterfront Marathon. Its a funny feeling almost like the race did not even happen. The time just seems to be flying by.
Kevin and I travelled to Toronto the week before the marathon to adjust to Eastern time, relax, get spoiled by my mom and see friends. We spent Tuesday to Saturday in Meaford, Ontario with my Mom. Meaford is a really good place to relax. Not much going on in that town.
I did my last pace workout Thursday and felt really good. My legs felt energized and my mind was ready. Over the course of the marathon training I had a little question in my head if I was or will be ready for the distance. After that short workout I knew I was ready. All I needed to do was rest and eat. I ate what I normally eat just added extra potatoes, rice, pasta.
We arrived in cold, windy, Toronto on Saturday am and headed to the expo. I said Hi to Matt Merko with Saucony. I picked up some gloves and a hat from Matt. The weather had been unpredictable and it was supposed to be windy with 40% chance of showers race morning. I was a little worried about the wind.
Once we got to the athlete hotel my nerves kicked in. I think Kevin was getting a little nervous as well. We both headed out for a 20′ shakeout run and strides along Lakeshore Blvd(part of the race course) Kevin felt good but I felt tired and really nervous. We both did not say much during the 20′ run it was so windy and cold.
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We headed to the pre race technical meeting. We dropped off our bottles and Alan Brooks told me I was chosen to run for Team Canada for the Team challenge against Team England. I was really excited but mostly just praying for the wind to die down overnight.
The next morning we were on the bus by 7am and taken downtown to the Scotiabank Centre. There was a area for the elite athletes to get organized and try to relax before the race start.
I saw Anne-Marie before the start and told her to go get sub 80. Congrats Anne Marie You are Amazing 1:19 and change. I started to feel calm before the race start and reminded myself of all my training and everyone supporting me. Once we were off I relaxed and felt good with my pace avg 3:53. We got to 10k and i was on pace 2:44/45ish. Heading back up Lakeshore the wind was now on my back and it felt effortless. At 12k I saw Kevin on the side of the road. My first reaction was that he injured himself. I would like to see the shock on my face. He started running with me and said he felt so flat at 5k and at 10k he still tried to pick it up but had nothing. I asked him what he was planning on doing and he said he was going to run with me as long as he could. We got to halfway 1:22:40 and I was still on pace and feeling good. 23K I passed Josianne she seemed to be struggling a bit. Still feeling strong and getting my fuel and fluid in with no problems. Around 27-30k it started to feel like a bit more effort but I was still on pace. At 30k I even said to Kevin 12K to go no problem…I actually said piece of piss. 35k we were heading into the strong wind and I started to really struggle. Kevin was encouraging me and I really appreciate it now, but at the time I yelled at him…I CANT HEAR YOU…and STOP IT! sorry Kevin.. It was such a tough section from 37-40k…I was in complete survival mode. I was in so much pain but mentally I was consciously telling myself to focus on the good and stay positive. The 40-42k section the crowd and cheers were so helpful. The last 500m I was trying so hard to pick it up faster but my legs were starting to seize. I pictured myself collapsing before the finish so I just maintained my pace.
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I am really happy with my performance 1st Canadian Female 8th Female Overall and Team Canada winning over England. I did want a faster time but I trust that will come next time.
A big Thank you to Kevin for running me in to the finish. I know how hard it was for him to pull out and then get back in. We trained a lot together for this race so I teared up at the finish saying Im so sorry. I know all the hard work he has done will pay off in the next race he enters. Kevin you are Amazing!
I have some people in my life that support me that I am so grateful for. Thank you to my coach Kathy-Butler she is so calm and encouraging. Im already looking forward to the next race. Also Thank you to Saucony for being so supportive over last few years! ND Stella Seto at YYoga for getting me to the starting line healthy and balanced. Big shout out to RMT Bobby Crudo for keeping my body aligned.
If you missed the race you can watch the live coverage here. I am featured closer to the end of the video 3h16 on the video.
The race is so well organized Thank you to Allan Brooks and Cliff Cunningham for taking such good care of all the athletes that weekend. Cliff thanks for being there when my legs went out from underneath me!
Way to Go Reid and Eric that ran stunning performances that day!!
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