I wish I could race every weekend. Seriously. There is something about waking up extra early on a Sunday to meet up with some pretty awesome people and then spend a period of time torturing yourself/feeling like you’re going to die just to cross a finish line. Runners have a distorted idea of the word “fun”.
I will be honest, I had really high expectations going into this race. During my last two 10K races, I crossed the 5K mat in 21:45 and 21:30 so my A goal for the Toronto Women’s 5K was to run a sub-22. My previous PR on this course was a 23:11 so my B goal was to run a sub-23. Knowing I had these goals in mind, I did everything wrong the night before the race. I stayed on my feet for WAY too long and forgot to eat dinner so on my way home Saturday night, I picked up a veggie burger with a side of fries and onion rings (#FREESPEED, right Jess?! 😉 ). I was in the mood to make bad decisions and knew I would be affected in the worst way possible but I did it anyway (and will never do it again).
After shovelling my dinner into my face at 10pm, I headed right to bed feeling like a can of trash and set my alarm for 6am…woke up Sunday morning ready to roll despite my mouth feeling as dry as the Sahara dessert. I was SO dehydrated and hella thirsty from all the salt in my dinner. I’m on a roll here, huh? Anyway, I got dressed and ate breakfast (Love Grown Foods Power Os), chugged some water, and hopped in my car to get to Sunnybrook Park. By the time I got there around 7:30am, the only available parking was a mile from the start which actually ended up working out perfectly because I was able to use it as my warm up.
I got to hang out with my Mizuno ladies for a short while until it was time to get into my corral. A few of them including Krysten, Phaedra, and Morgan were Mizuno Run Birds for the race and cheered, paced, danced, screamed, and made sure everyone was having a fab time out on the course. They were the rockstars of the day!! I wished Robyn good luck, lined myself up near the front behind all the speedy pros, and before I knew it we were counting down. In typical Christina fashion, I went out too fast and saw 5:xx on my watch but immediately tried to gain control and settle into a more sustainable pace.
Mile 1 – 6:46
Mile 2 – 7:08
Mile 3 – 7:05
I found it frustrating how it was so difficult for me to hold sub-7’s for a 5K but I was able to do it for a 10K (twice). I have no idea how to pace myself for shorter races and end up feeling like absolute death for the entire time. The fast food dinner probably didn’t help…
My official finishing time was 22:09 and despite my frustrations, it’s still a PR and I’m pretty happy about it. I think 10 seconds faster would have been nice though!!! I really wanted that 21:xx. Next time!!
I spent the rest of my morning at the Mizuno tent, taking jumping photos, chatting with everyone, running out to find some of the last few ladies running the half marathon and taking them to the finish line. I’d say it was a pretty awesome day.
I met Martina at last year’s Toronto 10-miler. She looked like a pretty nice human so I went up to her and asked her to take pictures of me since I went solo and now we are besties and I adore her.
She gave me this lokai bracelet – have you heard of them?!
It is infused with the highest and lowest points on Earth – the white bead carries water from Mt. Everest and the black bead contains mud from the Dead Sea. These are supposed to remind you to live a balanced life and to stay humble during life’s peaks and hopeful during its lows. If this girl only knew how much I needed this!!
Topped it off my day with lunch at Fresh and was joined by a little bird who made her way from the table next to us onto my plate to enjoy some rice. Yup, pictures to prove it.
Next up: Nike 15K in less than 3 weeks!!