On Saturday, July 28th I ran the 5K in the inaugural Kamloops Marathon. There was also a 10K race with ours, while the half and full marathons were run on Sunday.
The races began on the outdoor stadium track at Thompson Rivers University, which is a world class facility whose adjacent building houses an Olympic size swimming pool and indoor track, plus many other amenities.
Before the race I met Larry Doan, who I'd seen at the Peach City Half & 10K in Penticton earlier in the year. We thought it was funny that we both live in Vancouver but only saw each other at out of town events. Larry was running the half marathon the next day but was also doing the 10K today, running with his sister-in-law Laura and her sister Elizabeth, who were competing in their first ever race. We all chatted for awhile but then it was time to go warm up and get ready for our races.
We took off at 8 AM on the track and then ran out of the stadium and onto the roads. Like the Lily Duster, this was a 5K loop that we'd have to do once, and the 10Kers would do twice. As usual, the young fast runners bolted ahead, and I managed to settle into a decent pace and watched them gradually move farther and farther away. Even at this early hour it was getting hot, and the sun was already beating down on us. It was fairly flat for the first kilometer as we ran along the streets around the university, and then we turned a corner and hit a hill a couple of blocks long. I managed to power up it not losing too much speed, but we only had a block of flatland before going up the next one, and here I slowed up considerably.
We went downhill after this, picking up speed, and I managed to pass some of the younger runners who'd blasted out ahead at the beginning, but were now running out of steam. After a zigzag along some more flats I had a repeat of my first experience. Different hills but same situation, a shorter hill that I powered up, followed by longer one that made my legs feel like lead. After cresting it though, it didn't take long before I recovered and picked up the pace again. I knew we were on the home stretch to the stadium, and a volunteer said "400 meters to go", but I looked at my GPS and knew it was twice that, so I didn't break into a sprint just yet.
Finally I rounded the corner into the stadium for the final 200 meters, and people cheered me in as I crossed the line and got my finisher's medal from a volunteer. About 20 seconds later a couple of guys I'd passed earlier came in and we congratulated each other on a good race, and then went to get some water. They had cookies, bananas, cantalope, and bagels to eat, plus Subway had a table set up with six inch turkey and cheese and veggie sandwiches. I had a turkey and cheese, and then later I noticed there were still a lot of veggie ones left, so I tried one of those too.
I stayed at the finish line cheering runners in, and then went and got my camera from my car and went back, in time to take a picture of Laura and Larry as they crossed the line. I asked where Elizabeth was, and Larry said she was still out on the course. She had been struggling and he said he was going to go bring her home, so I followed him. We'd just gotten out of the stadium and onto the road when we spotted her, and we accompanied her in and then I ran across the field and got a picture of her and Larry coming over the finish line.
The women were very happy to finish their first race, and thrilled with their medals.
We stood around talking for quite awhile, chatting with a few more runners, and then we got results. I ended up in 8th place out of 88 but there were no age group awards, and the others were leaving so we exchanged emails so I could send them some pics. I was running another race the next day so it was time to head back to Vancouver to rest up for that.
Here's the results, my time was 21:37, which I figured wasn't bad considering the heat and the hills.
They also have some photos up:
My next race was the next day, the 5K race in the Jog 4 The Bog at 9 AM.