Moving out to Vancouver Island at the end of summer, I knew I would probably run in the Victoria half marathon and hopefully have a good chance at smashing my best half marathon time. The week leading up to the race, I had some amazing workouts including a great longer tempo run as well as some kilometer repeats at the track. Going into the race, I felt like I had a good shot of running in the 1:10 area.
Race morning started at 5:30. I had a quick breakfast and did some light foam rolling before making the drive down island to Victoria. After having some trouble finding a parking spot, I had just enough time to run to the starting line before the gun went off. The race started fast and I had no choice but to go with the lead group or be stuck in no-mans-land. We went through the first mile in just under 5:10 and everything was feeling good. After going through 5 km in 16:30, I found myself dropping back from the group every so often and having to put in a big effort to run back to them. I hit the 10 km mark in just under 33 minutes and I had been dropped from the group by that point, running completely solo for the rest of the race. At halfway it was looking good and I was excited that I would probably not only crush my old personal best of 1:12:30, but probably go low 1:11 or even under. It wasn’t long after that point that my legs just stopped running as fast as I wanted. I wasn’t able to consistently hold any pace under 3:30/km the last half of the race and ended up losing a lot of time. The whole race went by very quickly and I was happy at the finish to still have came within 30 seconds of my personal best. Even though this was one of my slowest second halves of a race, I still felt I had a good result. It makes me excited about where my fitness is and will hopefully lead to some faster runs off the bike next triathlon season!
I have to send a big shoutout to April Weber from Red Deer, AB. She ran in the half as well and ran across the road to give me a high five and a big cheer. I used her awesome energy as long as I could to fuel me through a rough stretch and it worked for a while. Thank you to Four Sigma Foods as well for keeping me healthy and running fast. I had a packet of cordyceps before the race and aerobically I handled all the hard paces today. It was only my legs that let me down today in that second half. It happens, but hopefully not next time!