Tuesday, May 20

Ottawa Marathon – 5 days and counting

Heat
Over the long weekend, Victoria enjoyed a heat wave of sorts as the thermometer recorded highs hovering near 25C. Typically, this wouldn’t be so monumental but as the temperature has loitered around 10C since October, this recent rise feels unusually balmy. I’ve tried to soak up as much of the rays as responsibly possible, but Sunday’s long run only reminded me how I do “not” perform well under hot conditions. It also reminded me how much a sweat.

Ottawa is forecasting a race day high of 23C.

I’m planning on starting the race with my water bottle and downing it in the first 1h+ to ensure I’m hydrated. It’s time like this I wish I was faster and could benefit from using the elite tables. Regardless, running with my own bottle means I don’t have to fight for a cup at the aid stations and also means I won’t get served an over concentrated dose of Gatorade, at least not until the latter stages.

Race Number

I received my race number today and consistent with prior years I have a great one, #191 (I’m just glad it isn’t #911).

Final Preparation
Today I ran my last workout prior to the big show and for some reason I’d got it in my head that I was to run 4x1-k on 3:20. I managed to convince myself that I was ready for the test but was very grateful when I realized my pace times were supposed to be 3:40-3:45.

After a slow warm-up (my feet are sore from my cycling shoes), I began the first repetition smack into a headwind. I told myself to relax and imagine I had the fluid stride of Simon Whitfield; it was a huge surprise to me then when I split the first marker in 3:24 more akin to an inexperienced marathoner hoping to build a buffer. I couldn’t help it though, I felt smooth. I told myself to pull back on the reins but it wasn’t until the third interval that I found the mark. Still, if I had a choice I’d rather feel fast and in control five days before a race than the alternative - 3:24, 3:38, 3:42 & 3:38.

Congratulations
For those of you who are unaware, Eric won his first marathon on the weekend with an official time of 2:30:34 – well done! The first half of his report is up here.

Training:

Friday: easy 27:03 with 4xstrides
Saturday: easy 42:27 with 4xstrides
Sunday: easy 1:28:24
Monday: easy 1:00:10 on damp west coast trails
Tuesday: 55:16 with 4x1-k tempo (2’)