Sunday, 13 September 2015

Maritime Race Weekend 2015 Recap

Well we are almost half way through September already!  The weather here in Nova Scotia has been amazing...warm days with slightly cooler nights which makes it great for sleeping...not so great for running.  LOL  The month of September also means the largest race weekend here on our Eastern Shore....Maritime Race Weekend.  Approximately 3,200 people converge on this little fishing village for a two day event.  There is a Sunset 5k and then a 5k, 10k, half, and marathon the next morning.  Mother nature was trying to scare us off a little this year with a tropical storm coming up the coast....but us Nova Scotians are not scared easily...especially when we had a hurricane 2 years ago fall on the same weekend!  But back to the weekend.....this year I was running the Sunset 5k and the Saturday morning 10k.  My friend Erin was coming from PEI to participate in her first #MRW and I couldn't wait to catch up!  Way back when, I used to coach Erin in gymnastics as well as train and compete with her.  Fun Times!!!

Friday at the golf course, I was on my feet all day serving drinks and chicken wings to golfers...yup....just a typical day as an accountant!  LOL
I wasn't sure how my calf, knees, and legs would hold up being on my feet all day.  The day before I had an extremely painful massage as my periformis was NOT a happy camper.  Not to self....125m of walking lunges is not a good idea the week before a double race. 

So I picked Erin up at 5:30pm and we made our way over to the start of the race.  The obligatory starting line selfie was taken....I should mention...many people dress up as pirates for this race...mostly on the 5k sunset run.  It's really quite fun!

We lined up in the 30-35 minute 5k as Erin hasn't been running much and she was sure she'd stop to walk a bit.   And then we were off!  The first 1.5k is VERY congested so you just kind of go with the flow...especially if you're planning on running the next day.  I do have a is it that we were passing walkers??  Listen people....running etiquette says....if you are a walker...please have the courtesy to start at the back so that people do not have to weave around you.  I understand if you are running and get a stitch or something....but this was less than 500m into the race....I know these were 100% walkers.  Grrrrrrr....(okay...rant done).  Erin did amazing....she did not stop once....and the last 250m she picked it up to a super fast speed.  She looks like she is running on air no matter what speed she graceful!  I also remember that about her gymnastics routines as well!  We ended up crossing in 31.47....much better than Erin had expected!  YAY!!!!  I loved seeing so many TTP'ers out there...being able to shout out encouragement as we passed eachother!!
Finishing shot
We quickly headed home, knowing it would be an early morning the next day!  I was contemplating dropping down to the 5k the next day as my calf/leg/periformis were super tight after the evening run.

I picked Erin up at 6:30am on Saturday and once again headed to the race start.  Bathroom stops happened first and then we found our spot in the starting coral.  Once again we lined up at the 60-70 minute mark for the 10k.  Erin hasn't run a 10k in over a year so she was shooting for 75 minutes or so.  Me?  Well I was still wondering if I should be doing only the 5k.  With a half marathon next month, I really don't want a permanent injury.  Erin said that I should run my own race today...not stay back with her. 
Erin's cool panoramic shot
It was a very heavy mist in the morning, keeping things cool for sure.  At 8am precisely, we were off!  Again, the first 1.5k is very spend a lot of energy weaving between people.  The spectators are awesome though and often dress in pirate costumes with pirate signs as they cheer you on.  At about the 1.5k mark, I looked at Erin and said..."have a great race" and I started to slide into my comfort zone. 
I look like a weird runner as I pull away
I was feeling good, so when the 5k turnaround point came...I kept going...determined to finish the 10k as planned.  I had settled into a nice 5.35/km pace and kept that going for much of the race.  There is one big hill that you go up....but the good news is that you come back down as well.  The rest of the course is small rolling mole hills, along the beautiful Nova Scotia coastline, as the waves crash against the shoreline.  I didn't wear music today so that I can hear all the sounds around me.  At the 10k turnaround point I realized that running home would be against a bit of a felt nice...but darn the extra effort it took to stay at my race pace!
Erin took the time to snap a pic when
she saw me coming...thanks girl!
I love the finish line of the race...people are lined up for like 250m as they see you come in with the last 100m being a straight stretch! (why didn't I take a picture of the finish line shoot?)
I crossed in 57.14...a minute slower than my personal 10k best, but a course best in this race for me.  I walked back waiting for Erin to cross (who was now texting me every km to let me know where she was).  And do you know what she did at the 250m from the finishline....she stopped to walk and text....who does that.  I yelled at really loud....LOL.  And she heard me!

We moved through the finishing line to grab our post race food which was set up as a tail gate party...I mean come cool is that?  Thanks to Steele Volkswagon for making sure there were enough cars on hand!

There were banana's, oranges, bagels, chocolate milk, and water just to name a few.  We all sounded like cows as we walked around with our double medals clanging around our necks.  You see, with Maritime Race Weekend, if you run the 5k sunset run, and then ANY run the next day, you receive a total of 3 medals...yup...that's a lot of bling!!!  Speaking of was my take home load of the weekend....
That's a long sleeve, pair of socks, buff, and 3 medals!
I love the saying on the back of the shirt as well!
Sorry for the sideways pic!
Good Times in the Maritimes certainly does capture the feeling of this race weekend!  The race director, Michelle, can always be seen roaming around the race with a smile on her face!  She had lots of traffic control, bike support, and excellent volunteers this year.  The volunteers had orange shirts and stood out really well against the crowd should we have needed anything.   I think that volunteering at this event (especially handing out medals) would be just as much fun as participating.   One thing I did miss this year was the giant blow up pirate that she had last year...he was awesome as you could see him from about the 1km mark coming back in!  I do love the atmosphere of this race...especially the 5k Sunset Run on Friday night when people get all dressed up!  I do wish I had seen more photographers but also know that that is a difficult thing to plan...especially when you are expecting 3200 racers!!  So I say GREAT JOB to Michelle and all her volunteers for another fantastic race Maritime Race Weekend.  Count me in for next year!


  1. I'm glad you stuck with the 10k! Nice job finishing strong. I love the finish line too...nothing beats that atmosphere!

  2. Thanks for all the encouragement! And kind words about my grace! Lol you finished a full 10 minutes before me, that's awesome! I'm glad you had a good run! Thank you for hanging with me, it was so fun!

  3. Thanks for all the encouragement! And kind words about my grace! Lol you finished a full 10 minutes before me, that's awesome! I'm glad you had a good run! Thank you for hanging with me, it was so fun!

  4. Nice job on both runs! YOu certainly got your monies worth with that pirate costume! ;) It's been passed around a bit as well, lol.

  5. The maritime race weekend sounds like a lot of fun! I love running, mainly because it is free and it gets me out and about in the fresh air. I recently came back from a weekend away at a fitness retreat specifically designed for the outdoor life. I worked out daily in the forest as well as eating outside.

    Catarina @ Wild Fitness