Sunday, May 13, 2018

Vancouver Marathon Recap

     I did it! I ran the Vancouver Marathon. It went really well, and I had an amazing time in Vancouver. I am super proud of having finished. I have signed up for 2 other marathons over the past 3 years, but could not run them due to injuries. This was something I really wanted to do and wasn't completely sure at times during training if I could do it. 

Here is a recap of race weekend:

     Craig and I left Saturday morning for Canada. It was my first time crossing the boarder in a car. I immediately was impressed by how beautiful Vancouver is. We picked up my race packet at the convention center, which is located right on the water, looking towards the mountains.

The view from packet pickup

A cruise ship ported at the convention center
The day before the race- I remember feeling pretty nervous!

     We stayed with Craig's friend Nick and his girlfriend at a VRBO. We played Catan (for the first time) and went and ate pasta at a mall. 
     I didn't sleep well that night but oh well... soon it was race morning. 

I had my outfit all prepped. The T-shirt is one Craig made for me for our honeymoon

Gotta wear sunscrean

     We parked semi-nearby and walked to the start line at Queen Elizabeth Park. We were all pretty excited for the race.

At the start line, super excited
     The race started at 8:30. We arrived at the start line just in time so didn't need to wait long. The weather was already nice and warm!

The race start line

The Race

     Within the first few minutes, I really needed to use the bathroom. I stopped (for the first time during a race) to use the Porta potty at mile 2.  I guess I was over hydrated haha. 
     The first 5 miles were pretty easy and downhill.

Mile 1- 10:59
Mile 2- 12:08 (with bathroom stop)
Mile 3- 10:35
Mile 4- 10:23
Mile 5- 10:42

     The next few miles were a bit more difficult and uphill. My feet where beginning to hurt already, which made me a little nervous. I made sure not to push myself too hard so that I would be able to finish the race.
     I just kept reminding myself that as soon as I reached the halfway point it would be flat, along the water and beautiful.

Mile 6- 12:12
Mile 7- 12:07
Mile 8- 11:28
Mile 9- 11:24
Mile 10- 11:22
Mile 11- 12:14
Mile 12- 11:16
Mile 13- 11:00

At the half-way point: 13 miles!

At the halfway point
    I was right! The race was super beautiful from the halfway point onward. I was feeling great and was enjoying the run! At this point, I decided that I would just take it one mile at a time and have fun, regardless of pace. My splits got slower because I took some walk breaks.

Mile 14- 12:00
Mile 15- 12:21
Mile 16- 11:23
Mile 17- 13:34
Mile 18- 12:28
Mile 19- 12:40
Mile 20- 12:09

Around mile 20 where I saw Craig

Feeling strong at mile 20
     I saw Craig between mile 19 and 20, and was feeling great! I remembered that at the Portland Marathon that this was the point where I completely broke down and felt terrible, so I was happy that I was feeling ok. I started listening to some music (I hadn't been until now) and just ignored that I was at mile 20 so that I wouldn't even think of crashing or "hitting the wall."

Nearing the end of the race--- it just kept getting more beautiful

At the end of the course: Stanley Park

Almost finished!
      Nearing the end, I had terrible blisters on my toes. It hurt a lot! I even took off my shoe at one point lol. I definitely walked at the start of each mile and through water stations. But I was still enjoying myself! 

Mile 21- 12:54
Mile 22- 13:08
Mile 23- 12:36
Mile 24- 12:57
Mile 25- 13:02
Mile 26- 13:11
Mile 26.5- 5:55

Final time: 5:18:21

Finish line

About to cross the finish line

I finished in 5:18! (I started around 3 minutes after the official start)

My wonderful husband is the best support team!

I am so happy to have finished this marathon-- it's been a long time goal!

     This was definitely one of the most fun races I have ever run! I already want to run another marathon. Other than the blisters, I didn't really injure myself, and I was hardly even sore after. Even though I felt that my training was semi-inadequate, I feel like I finished well (and even cut about 30 minutes off of my last marathon time!).


My race! I obviously slowed in the second half of the race- but basically ran the entire time

     Because of the late start, it was pretty late in the day by the time the race ended. We went back to the VRBO, cleaned up, then went and got a ton of sushi and bubble tea! 

     All of us were pretty tired that night, so didn't do much that night. Craig was sick with a cold, too, so ended up watching movies.

     Craig and I fortunately had the next day off, so we went out to breakfast before crossing back into the USA. 

     I took the whole week off from running. I have a new job, so it was nice to sleep in! I am excited to plan my next race, though. 

     Overall: the Vancouver Marathon was a blast! I would definitely recomend it to anyone wanting to run a marathon. They also have 8K and half marathon courses, which are beautiful too!