It’s becoming a bit of a tradition for us to do the Barrie Canada Day race. It’s easily accessible right down at Heritage Park, it’s not too expensive (especially if you sign up early, which this year we did not), it’s full of lots of friendly faces we know and love, and it’s a great way to start off the summer!
Last year when we did the 10K we were still basically ‘baby’ racers. We had been using the old borrowed ‘stroller’ for less than two months, I was uncomfortable in it and it was clunky. Not to mention that our second runner, Adria, had never run 10K worth of distance before and forgot her puffer, and Trevor was definitely still learning this new discipline of ‘team racing’.
Needless to say our time last year wasn’t anything overly exciting – a pedestrian 1:12:33 – so having put down 50:11.1 at the MEC 10K a few weeks ago we came into the race this year hoping that we could improve significantly on our time.
That was, until we saw the weather report for the day: high of 34 degrees with a humidex of 45!!
With that knowledge we realized that we needed to adjust our expectations for the race. We hydrated far more than usual, and Trevor took two full immersion dips into the lake before the race even got started to try to keep his body temperature cool. Just before the start gun went off he dipped his hat into the lake one last time, threw it over his body and we were off!
For the first time in our race history we managed to run our first kilometer on pace instead of going out too quickly – in fact we ran quite steadily throughout the first half of the race averaging just under 5 minute 5K’s.
By the time we hit the halfway point it was almost 10:00, however, and the heat was becoming quite extreme. We made the decision to dial back and to simply run to finish the race. By kilometer 7 we were up to a 5:36 pace.
Having agreed to slow down and simply finish the race, we were shocked to see as we came towards the turnaround at Johnson’s Beach that we were the 4th place overall – and the second woman! And as we made our way back towards the finish line we suddenly realized we had the chance to do something we had never done before: medal in a race! All we had to do was manage Trevor’s body temperature long enough to get us across the line!
The realization spurred us along in spite of the temperature, and despite having promised to go slowly our pace quickened back to the 5:10’s. We came back towards Heritage we high-fived the runners still working their way down towards the turn around.
We came into the park still strong, and although we weren’t able to do any last minute sprints, we still came across the line nice and strong with an unofficial (Strava) time of 51:29 – STUNNING!
After Trevor threw himself back into the lake to cool himself off we had a chance to sit in the shade and connect with some of the other racers including our friend Doug McLellan and his son Sawyer who ran the 5K.
We heard them announcing the winners of the 5K race and wandered over to check our time only realize that we weren’t on the 10K list somehow. We went over and checked with the timing stats folks, and they discovered that somehow we had accidentally been put in the 5K category. With that fixed it became official – we were the 2nd female across the line!
An amazing race in extreme conditions – so pleased with today’s results!