It's official! This week I signed up for the GoodLife Marathon - May 15 in Toronto. No turning back now!
I can't believe we are already into week 10, although the distances should tell me that - we moved up to 29k last Sunday (although my Garmin conked out so I only did 27...but that's not bad). Funny: when we started out for our run on Sunday, I just couldn't imagine how the heck we could run from downtown Halifax, all the way across the bridge, around to Shubie and back, and then add another 10k on top of that! Yet I'd done that route a few times last fall...Our minds just have short term memory, I guess.
So, instead of doing the run across the bridge (which freaks me out -- it's just so darned high and long and I feel utterly exposed there. Usually I pick up my pace to around 4:30 and sprint the 1 mile across till I get to solid ground again...), I opted to do loops around Halifax instead. For some reason that made it more manageable in my mind.
I found the 27k hard, there's no denying it. Part of it, I think, is that I've been getting a little lazy with my nutrition. That morning, I only ate a slice of toast with a little bit of PB on it -- I was having stomach issues so I didn't want to exacerbate it. But I realized that I've got to start paying closer attention to my nutrition, because the distances are just too long now to ignore. This week I'll probably run around 41 or 42kms combined, plus some cross-training thrown in for good measure. You just can't run that far on a handful of calories and expect to get anywhere.
Last Saturday I had the opportunity to meet with Colin Harris of http://www.takemeoutside.ca/. Colin is, get this -- running across Canada! He's doing about 3 marathons a week. In terms of nutrition, he says he burns about 6,000 calories a day so eating is just not a problem for him. His breakfast usually consists of a bagel and maybe PB -- much like most runners start with. He'll run about 10k in the morning, stop for a nutritious lunch, do another 15k in the afternoon, have a break and then do the remainder following the break and a snack.
Colin ran 1,300 kilometres from St. John's, Newfoundland and burned through two pairs of shoes to get to Halifax, and left from Truro on Monday morning to continue his journey east. He'll be visiting schools across Canada to speak to kids about the importance of getting outside. "Canada just has the best backyard ever," he says of his running route. "I just believe that everything feels better when you get outside."
I'll be asking Colin to answer some questions for a HRG Runner Profile spot soon, along with other local runners like Erin of http://www.love4gambia.com/, who is running across The Gambia.
So when the going feels a little tough, I just have to remember Colin and Erin. What's a little marathon when you're running across entire countries? Now THAT's dedication!