Tag Archives: Around the Bay Road Race 2012

Its almost race day!!!!

The Road2Hope road race series is almost here….just a few more sleeps!  As many of our members, staff and supporters get ready to race in support of ywcaencore, our running coach, Coach Kim, has some great last minute advice.  Thanks Coach!

Kim’s TOP TEN Race Week Prep Ideas

#1 Stay off your feet as much as possible when you are running your last couple of efforts (avoid standing in one place)

#2 Elevate your legs in the evening or when you can

#3 Maintain a happy and positive mood…..do fun things!

#4 Try not to change your diet too drastically this week.  Simply cut back on excess fats and fiber

#5 Sip plain water frequently

#6 Start laying out everything you think you might need on race day  (it’s November,  so think in terms of layers  and gloves)

#7 Start telling all your friends and loved ones about the great run you are going to have and where they can cheer for you on race day!

#8 Stretch frequently and gently,  but avoid static stretching on the morning of your race  (dynamic R.O.M.  is fine)

#9 Attend a Yoga class or at least breathe deeply several times a day!

#10 Visualise your event and see yourself crossing the line smiling,  happy and healthy!

Best wishes for a safe and successful day to one and all.



Come out and cheer all 10 000 of us!!

Good luck to all the Around the Bay Road runners tommorrow!  Hope you make yourselves very proud!

If you live in Hamilton, Ontario – and you live along the route especially – I hope you come out tomorrow to cheer for us!!  There are over 10 thousand runners registered for this event, 8000 for 30k, 2000 for 5k and 500 for the 10k & 15k relay teams!

The cheering from the crowd go a looooong way!  So come out and cheer!

See you out there:)

Winter Running

So you’ve been able to stay consistent through the fall with your fitness routine.  What happens to your enthusiasm when the days get shorter, the mornings are cold and dark, the winter wind starts to blow etc.?  It’s natural to feel less than excited to get out and run at this time of year.  But the winter can be a fabulous time to enjoy running.  Look for a friend who may also need help staying focused,  join a run clinic,  set a goal for yourself to complete a distance by a specific time or consider signing up for one of the many fun road race that can be found in our community.  Often we convince ourselves that we are just “too tired”  to run.  My strategy is to tell myself that I’ll just do 10 minutes and call it a day.  Chances are that the 10 minutes will turn into 15, the 15 then becomes 20 and before you know it……I’m sure you get the picture!  So there is nothing wrong with playing little  games to help conquer the negative voice in your head. 

Cold weather running has it’s own set of challenges so be prepared.  Make that first winter run as pleasant as it can be by staying comfortable and safe.  Stay hydrated just as you would during the summer.  Don’t assume that because it’s not hot that you aren’t losing fluids through perspiration.  Dress in layers so that as the body warms with your effort you have the option to take something off.  Because your core does warm up,  try starting your run feeling “slightly” cool.  It’s important to avoid excessive perspiration that could eventually leave you feeling really chilled at the end of the run.  Clothing that promotes “wicking” or moving the moisture away from your skin to be evaporated is a great investment.  These garments can be used for most outdoor activities. 

Common sense prevails with the last few tips for safety.  Avoid running in the dark without a buddy (or two!),  choose routes that are plowed such as Bayfront trail during the snowy season,  start slow and give yourself extra time  for the muscles to warm up gradually and  at the end of your run be sure to change out of your wet clothing as soon as possible.

In closing,  if you have been running through the warm weather,  don’t give up now.  Stay focused, set a goal, find a run buddy and challenge yourself to a winter of outdoor activity!!  It’s a great way to find some inexpensive fun and maybe enjoy the benefits of sunshine and fresh air.

Second time Around the Bay Race

Thanks Barb! Great shot!

Just minutes before the gun went off, one of my training buddies told me about this quote she found on running: “Run the first part with your head, the middle part with your personality, and the last part with your heart”.

Not sure how my personality factored into the experience, but my mind and my heart were quite evident, and that quote sparked the first round of inspiration!  I also went in with this thought in the back of my head, that this is my second bay race, it can’t be that bad … it was.

But THIS time–this time I was more knowledgeable, more experienced, more prepared mentally, physically, socially and emotionally—had plenty of support from family, friends, colleagues and members.  Even the weather was good for running.

Indeed the condition for significant improvement was laid out for me.

But panic quickly ensued when my bunny was no where in site!  This time, I wanted the 2:30-bunny.  The plan was to start with that bunny in site, then surpass him/her during the last few kilometres to finish on time.  That bunny was to lead me to victory!  That had been the plan since I was comfortable enough to disclose my goal to everyone!

No bunny.

In the meantime, the gun went off, and the race started.

I tried keeping up with that same training buddy.  Following her was plan B, but her goal was to run even faster, so I had to quickly watch her vanish into the distance, and plan for plan C!  Plan C meant accepting the fact that I had to pace myself, I had to get a good tempo going on my own, I had no one but the rhythm of my body to guide me.

I found my groove within the first 5k.  I was well under 5 minutes per kilometer—that s the pace I had to maintain or remain just under to meet my goal.

Every time I looked at my watch, I was on track. I finished my first 10k at 47 minutes and I was already quite pleased with myself.  That pace was manageable.  So after one third of the race, I had a significant boost of confidence towards my goal.  I decided to maintain that pace and just push through the hills when the time came.

Coach Kim was running on the course, she wished us all luck at the beginning, and I certainly kept her in mind during the course.  She was at every fuel station and the top of every hill cheering me on.  I kept replaying the words of encouragement she dished-out each time I indulged in a little self-doubt.  I am fitter, more prepared, trained—ready!! “Fitter, trained and ready”!! That mantra kept me going for sure.

She was right of course.  I’ve spent the past year being more active than I’ve ever been my entire life.  Tried new things, challenged my body and even started eating a little better.  There was a very high likelihood to surpass my past time and to reach my goal.

So I told myself that I could do it, I could run under 2:30.  I looked at my watch and time agreed with me.  I was still on track!  I had to check time until the bitter end when I finished with less then 2 minutes to spare! 2:28 was the time, earning me a spot in the silver category.

I did it. I met my goal and I couldn’t be happier.  My body wanted to give up on me during the last couple of kilometres, but my heart carried me through.  I was so close to my goal, it would have been disappointing to miss it by a couple of minutes!

The experience was just as agonizing as the first time (I doubt it ever gets easier!). I told myself, as I often do during such endeavorus, the faster I run, the faster I’m DONE!!

2:28 was the time, and the time to beat next year.

Yes, OF COURSE, I am going to sign up for Around the Bay Race 2012!!   But that’s a whole year away and running season is just starting.  I definitely need a marathon or two and a couple of 10ks to keep busy with!! Hope to see some of you out there!!!


P.S. that’s Kim below, modeling yoga poses!!