Tag Archives: 30k around the bay

Now With 90% Less Evil

Tired, but not this tired.

It has been just over 24 hours since the 30K Around the Bay, and despite being a little tired, I’m feeling pretty good. My joints aren’t screaming. My muscles aren’t nearly as tight as I thought they might be. My walk to the office today was as fast as normal1. And while I’m tired, I’m not knackered.

I won’t lie though – walking down stairs was a bit of a chore2. It’s not painful or anything that extreme – I can just tell that my muscles are tired. And perhaps weak. And maybe a little angry. I think the lack of fuel, coupled with dehydration and loss of electrolytes might explain that. And if that doesn’t work for you, perhaps the build-up of lactic acid – a result of pushing my body well past the exhaustion point yesterday – will. Regardless, each time I left my office and descended the stairs, it served only to remind me about how awesome yesterday was.

And it was awesome.

On my walk home this eve I realized that all I was thinking about was running. And I wasn’t just thinking about running yesterday. I was also thinking about my upcoming race, and how I might improve my diet so as to avoid another fueling issue. And I was thinking about my time, and whether I want to try for a personal best half marathon, or just run it as a training run? Is a personal best attainable? Hells ya. Is it smarter to treat it as a training run? Probably. I’ve not made my decision yet. I’ll probably leave that decision to the day of the race.

The Tasmanian Devil. Not so wicked. Mostly awesome.

Anyway, I’m home and relaxing at the moment. My feet are up, the fuzzball is dashing around the condo chasing ghosts or something, I’ve finally just celebrated yesterday’s run with a beer, and I am debating if I’m going to do any further work this eve.

Regardless, there is a huge part of me that feels the need to go for a run. Partly because I’m a mileage whore. Partly because I want to know if I can. But mainly because I love running. Fortunately I’m smart enough to know that I need a little bit of a rest.

And since there is no rest for the wicked, I can only assume this means I’m not wicked. Or perhaps I’m wicked-reduced – the Calorie-reduced equivalent of wicked – all the same wicked flavour, all the same wicked fun, but with 90% less evil.

Just to be safe, I’ll restart my training tomorrow.

1 Given the frigid temperatures, my walk may have been faster than normal.

2 I didn’t notice any issues walking up stairs – just down.

Amazeballs And Awesomesauce


As you are likely all aware, today was the day that I ran my first ever 30K Around the Bay in Hamilton. Not my longest run ever, but still a significant distance.

The run was fantastic, despite the fact that I am apparently really stupid when it comes to fuel. How so? Let me explain by first telling you what I learned today – which is, of course, a lesson that is filed under obvious to probably everyone1.

I learned that one should probably eat more than a granola bar and a coffee before they attempt to run 30 kilometres.

Profound, no? Clearly I wasn’t thinking this morning because that is how I chose to fuel my body for the run. I’m what you’d call not so smart. I’d like to blame this on a mixture of nerves and excitement, but this wasn’t my first ever long run. Clearly I should know better.

Anyway, the lack of fuel didn’t catch up to me until later in the race. Probably around the 25 or 26 kilometer point. And it happened really quickly. It was as if all the energy and life in my body and legs was zapped. Perhaps it was a Dementor? The last several kilometres were quite a challenge. It was also around this point that I lost Carolyn. See – she’s actually smart and had consumed appropriate levels of fuel before the run. And she royally kicked ass. Her chip time was 2:47:50. Freaking amazing!

Based on how I felt though, I thought for sure I had blown my 3 hour dream. Fortunately, right when I needed it I got a second (or third, or fourth, or fifth,…) wind. And as if predestined, Edge of Glory by Lady GaGa came on. I realize that not everyone is a fan of Lady GaGa, but I have to tell you, for running – her music is freaking fantastic. Combine the second wind, Edge of Glory, and the screaming crowds, you can imagine the runner’s high that I was experiencing. And if you can’t, I’ll tell you this – it was AMAZING. I couldn’t help but smile ear to ear. At that moment, I think I could have done anything. And this was all I needed to propel myself to the finish line. As I rounded the last turn – turning into Copps Coliseum – I could hear the cheers of the people in the stadium. I knew they weren’t cheering specifically for me, but that didn’t change the way they made me feel. What an incredible experience.

Elliot is verifying the authenticity of the medal. He's good like that.

And the icing on what could have been the crap-cake of an underfueled run?

The gun-time was still at 2:58. Despite everything I’d still managed to finish in under 3 hours. Holy crap I felt amazeballs and awesomesauce. Better than that even. Words can’t describe how great I felt. I had mentioned to Carolyn afterwards that I am not one to normally get emotional at the end of a race – but this was definitely an exception given how crappy I had felt. Don’t worry folks – I didn’t break down into some blubbering mess, but I did feel an intense wave of satisfaction, and euphoria, and gratitude, and I don’t even know what else. All I know is that the moment was perfect. Abso-freaking-lutely perfect.

And the cherry on top of the icing on what could have been the crap-cake of an underfueled run?

My splits were fantastic. I ended up running the first 10 kilometres in 1 hour 21 seconds2, the second 10 kilometres in 56 minutes 8 seconds, and the last 10 kilometres in 56 minutes and 43 seconds. That’s right – despite my craptacular loss of energy and despite the fact that the last 10 kilometres was quite hilly- my last split was only 35 seconds off the second, and still better than my first. Crazy freaking awesome.

And the chocolate sauce on top of the cherry on top of the icing on what could have been the crap-cake of an underfueled run?

My chip time was 2:53:12. Holy freaking crapshark! Talk about a huge bonus!

Anyway, today was a lot of fun, a little bit of pain, and a lot of awesome. Thanks so much Carolyn for sharing this run with me. You are a huge slice of awesome pie and I’m looking forward to our next races. Also, thank you to everyone for your comments on the blog, on Facebook, on RunKeeper, on Twitter, on Instagram, and via text message. Your support helped me get past the ugliness of the last few kilometres. And an extra special thanks to Jamie & Nigel who came out to support all the runners. Seeing your faces gave me such a huge boost. You two rock!

Now it’s time to get back to work. Because the Run for Retina Research Half Marathon is just 3 weeks away. Eeep!

1 Well, everyone but me that is.

2 The first part of the race is usually crammed with so many people that the going is typically slow.

There Is A Great Disturbance In The Force…

One of these bugs might be in me.

And by force, I mean my belly.

You see, dear readers, based on the events of the past 2 days I can only deduce that I have either consumed dairy1 without knowing it, or I have picked up some bug.

How is it possible that I can’t tell?

Well, I don’t exactly feel sick. But I can confirm without a doubt that something ain’t right. 

Whatever I have doesn’t feel like dairy-poisoning2, but it also doesn’t feel like gastrointestinal (GI) disease. None of the standard symptoms are present. With dairy-poisoning, I’m often left feeling bruised. I tend to think of this as the result of some alien-milk baby trying to punch its way out of my gut. Charming, I know. And GI disease often comes with vomiting, fever, chills, etc.

Evil cow. The source of Montezumoo's Revenge.

I have none of these common symptoms. And thank you very much, I don’t want any of them. What’s even weirder is that I don’t feel ill. Well, I don’t feel ill between instances of Great Disturbances In The Force.

Anyway, I’m a bit perplexed as to what exactly I have. Perhaps it’s a happy little blend of GI disease and an evil alien-milk baby. Perhaps it’s something entirely different.

But, dear readers, what concerns me most of all about my current predicament is not the possibility of a GI-disease-evil-alien-milk-mutant-baby-crossbreed. What concerns me is that I haven’t been able to run. And as you may recall, I have the 30K Around The Bay scheduled for this Sunday. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t be running a lot right now, as I’d want to rest my legs and such for the big day, but I would be running some so as to keep my legs and body prepared.

However, given my current situation it would definitely be unwise to go running. I’m sure we can all imagine the terrible, terrible outcome that might bring.

Regardless, I’m still planning on running on Sunday lest this turn into some full-scale illness. I just hope above all other things that my legs are ready despite the unscheduled rest time. Actually, I take that back. I hope above all other things that I’m not hit with Montezumoo’s Revenge while I’m running on Sunday. That would just be awful in a way I can’t even begin to imagine.

1 Being a card-carrying member of the Lactose-Free Guild, I tend to avoid dairy at all costs due to the dire gastrointestinal consequences.

2 Dairy-Poisoning: what happens when someone who is lactose intolerant is purposefully or inadvertently fed dairy. See also: Montezumoo’s Revenge3.

3 Montezumoo’s Revenge – Ha! I kill me4.

4 I Googled Montezumoo’s Revenge and couldn’t find it anywhere. I also searched for just Montezumoo and came up with nothing. As such, I’m staking claim to this phrase forever and always. Mark your calendars – this is probably the highlight of my career.

A Little Slice Of Heaven

If these were my muscles, they'd all be super tight and unhappy. I think that means they'd have sad faces. Because tight muscles are sad muscles. Ask any scientician.

I’ve opted not to run this eve.

I’ll give you a minute to recover from that ever so shocking news.

It’s true. I’m not running this eve. My knee feels a bit wobbly from my long run on Saturday, and it’s probably best if I let it rest an extra day before carrying on with my training. As much as today would have been an awesome day to run, I’d rather not injure myself before the season even gets started. Especially since the first of this season’s races is this Sunday – the 30k Around the Bay in Hamilton. Eep!

Instead of running, I’m going to spend some quality time stretching as many of the muscles in my legs as I can. The goal is to reduce the tightness in the muscles (especially in the hip flexors), because this in theory should mean less pulling on my IT band. The less pulling there is on my IT band, the less wobbly my knee feels. It’s all very scientific, and I’m definitely not the scientician to explain the highly technical biomechanical bric-a-brac that provides cause-and-effect pathways from tight muscles to wobbly knees.

All I know is that when I apply gentle pressure to some of the muscles, I can feel the result in and around my left knee. It’s not pain that I feel, it’s tightness. Pain would be a problem. Tightness, if treated properly, shouldn’t be. Tightness like this is rather common for me after a long run – so it’s nothing for me to be alarmed about – so long as I stretch and listen to my body when it says it needs a rest. Like today.

Anyway, this means that I’m currently rolling around on my acuball. In fact, I currently have it “massaging” an extra tight spot in my left hamstring. I write “massaging” because what I really mean is nothing like the gentle relaxing experience that one might normally associate with the word. No, in this case “massaging” means placing the acuball on the tight area of the muscle, then applying as much weight as I can while rolling on the ball. The effect is both painful – breathtakingly so – and, at some magical point in time, releasing. Because at the very moment when the muscle fibres seem to finally give in and relax – well that’s just a little slice of heaven.

And really, that’s all I’m looking for this eve: a little slice of heaven.

I’ve Got That Throw-Uppy Feeling Again

You may recall that yesterday I mentioned I’d almost forgotten to register for the Run for Retina Research half marathon.

Shocking, I know.

Well not to worry folks – I managed to get myself registered between some of the many meetings I had today. As of this very moment, my official list of races includes the Chocolate Run 10 Miler, the Run for Retina Research half marathon, the Toronto Goodlife Marathon, and the Ottawa Marathon. I’m also awaiting info regarding a bib for the 30k Around the Bay in Hamilton. To be honest, I’m a little bit nervous and a whole-lotta excited about all of these races. Perhaps I’m somewhat throw-uppy too.

Yup, just checked – definitely throw-uppy – but in a good way.

Beyond running 21.1 km, the Run for Retina half marathon is also a fundraising event with the specific goal of raising awareness and research dollars that will help scientists study retinal diseases such as Macular Degeneration, Retinal Pigmentosa, Stargardt’s Disease, and others. For those of you not in the know, these diseases are far more common than you might think. They can also be extremely debilitating, as they can lead to partial or complete blindness.

Anyway, some of you will know that retinal diseases are rather important to me, so when I realized the opportunity to raise money for such a worthy cause, I had to jump. And with that, this is my not-so-subtle way of asking you to donate to the cause.

If I weren't guaranteed to suffocate to death in these eyeball costumes, I'd totally wear this during the half marathon.

For those of you with the means and the inclination to do so, I’ve put together a rather simple little donation page through the Running Room1 which you can access by clicking here2 (or by clicking on the Run For Retina Research icon over there on the right side of the page).

My goal is to raise at least $500. So if you’ve got some cash burning a hole in your pocket, why not throw it in my general direction? And by that, I don’t mean throw it at me, I clearly mean donate it. Because donating is good for you; it’s been scientifically proven by scienticians to improve your cardiovascular health, lower your cholesterol, and help you lose weight or gain weight – depending on what you’re trying to do; it leads to rock hard abs and a butt that won’t quit, and it is also guaranteed to improve your sex life3.

With a list of benefits like that, you’d be almost crazy NOT to donate. ;)

1 And by put together I mean I didn’t do anything at all, save for enter my name and press the magic go button. Then, presto-change-o, my fundraising page was born! Oh the magic of the interwebs. Is there anything it can’t do?

2 Or if you are wary about online donations, I can also collect the cash from you and submit the pledge that way.

3 Or donating will just make you feel warm and fuzzy inside. I don’t really know. I’m not a scientician.

What’s Another 67.1?

While in between meetings today I happened to check on my friend Carolyn’s blog, and realized that I had completely forgotten to register myself for an upcoming race.


The run that had slipped my mind? None other than the Run for Retina half marathon in London, Ontario. The run takes place April 15, and is intended to raise money and awareness for retinal health.

Specifically, the website states:

“Run for Retina is an event developed to raise funds for research at the Ivey Eye Institute in London Ontario. Thousands in our community and beyond suffer from genetic retina eye disorders such as Retinitis Pigmentosis, Best’s Disease, Usher Syndrome, Coat’s Disease, Age Related Macular Degeneration and Stargardt’s Disease, a juvenile form of Macular Degeneration.”

Given that I’ve been to the Ivey Eye Institute on numerous occasions, and given that my eyes are – shall we say slightly b0rked – I figured this would be a great way to support the research done there. Plus, I get to run a half marathon, and that’s a whole lot of alright. Further, since it is scheduled for the 15th of April, two weeks before the Chocolate Race 10 Miler (which I’ve already registered myself in), and three weeks before the first marathon of the year, it will act as a great training run.

Anyway, after I realized that I’d forgotten about the Run for Retina half marathon, it struck me that I’d also forgotten to hunt for a bib for the 30k Around the Bay in Hamilton (March 25). At this point, I’m not positive I’ll be running the Around the Bay as I’ve been slacking in the running department over the past few weeks. However, if I can manage to get off my butt and do some serious running over the next few days, I’m sure I’ll change my mind.

And when you think about it, that works out to an extra 3 races, and an extra 21.1+16+30=67.1km of running. How can I say no to that?