Friday, July 29, 2016

Beaches Jazz Run- Half Marathon!

Last weekend I completed the half marathon race in the annual Beaches Jazz Run. The Jazz Run has been around for awhile, marking the end of the Toronto Jazz Festival, but this was the first year that they made it an "official" race with medals, hats, chip timing, and free photography! It was actually a pretty decent deal for a half marathon- $55, so I signed up soon after my full marathon back in May as a way to keep up my fitness level.

I will say that I certainly did not train as hard for this half as I did for my first half last fall. In fact, the longest run I did was 16.8km, and it was slow with many stops. I also knew going into this that it was a summer race, and therefore wouldn't be ideal weather, and that I likely wouldn't PR, but I hoped maybe I could hit 2:00 for the finish. I had NO idea how tough it would end up being!!

I got up at 5:20am and was out the door at 6:10ish to catch the streetcar to the start of the race. It started over on the boardwalk in the beaches, which was a good 40 minutes by transit. It was already pretty warm at 7:00am when I got there so I knew I was in for a tough run. At 7:30 we were off! I quickly saw the 2:00 pacer pull ahead and knew I would never catch him. I decided just to stay in front of the 2:05 pacer, but it was hard. The sun was beating down on me and it was heating up fast (I think it was 22 degrees plus 80% humidity so closer to 30! And that was at the start of the race!).

5km in
Soon after the 5K mark I knew I wasn't doing too hot. I was already so tired! So I switched to a run 10 minutes, walk 1 schedule. I actually ran into a girl I knew from RunTOBeer around this part and she was hurting too, so we kind of leapfrogged with our running and walked and encouraged each other on.

Around 10km I think the 2:05 pacer paced me and I didn't have the strength to catch back up. If only I had just started with a slower pace I could have had the energy to go a bit faster! Also, I started to get a horrible headache, a questionable tummy, and was completely repulsed by my Gatorade. I recognized that I was starting to get dehydrated and I started stopping at the aid stations for actual water and forced down an energy gel for the salt- it all seemed to work for me because after another 5K I started to feel normal again- still tired...but not sick at least!

Thankfully it also became overcast and breezy after km 10, which was soooo nice!

Around km 17 (?) the 2:10 pacer passed me and I was furious! I have run a 1:55 and a 2:00 half before dammit!! I didn't want to finish slower than 2:10!! I had a surge of power and felt like Aragorn in Return of the King at this moment. I was like "A DAY MAY COME WHERE THE 2:10 PACER PASSES ME, BUT IT IS NOT THIS DAY!"

And off I went, like a beautiful gazelle, flying with grace and beauty.

Just kidding. I looked like this:

Anyway, I DID pull ahead and finished strong in 2:09:23! Far away from my personal best, but still the best run I think I could have pulled off on that particular day!! I met up with the RunTOBeer crew for a bit, but declined my beer as my stomach was still a little iffy. Plus it was like 9:30am. They actually all went off for a RunTOBeer run, but I went home for a nap!!

All in all, it was still a good race. I found it well organized and a lot of fun. Though I think there is something seriously wrong with my definition of fun. :). I think next I want to try racing a 5K, because I actually haven't run one before and I want to see if I can go sub 25 minutes! But I think I will take a break from actual races until the heat is gone!!


  1. Woo! Great race report! Running in the heat is tough stuff - but so are you. :D

  2. Great job! I've been saying I'll do a half marathon for a while now. Maybe I'll check this one our next summer since it'll be in my neck of the woods.


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