On March 16 I participated in the St. Patrick's Day 5K in Stanley Park. There were a lot of people in the race so I was glad to run into Teresa Nightingale and her son at the start. I managed to squeeze into a spot with them so I wasn't too far back from the front. 800 meter Olympian Gary Reed started us off at 10 AM and it was slow going at first as everyone was so densely packed in. Teresa said it reminded her of the Sun Run with costumes, as many people were dressed up in their St. Patrick's Day garb.
I ran with them for awhile because even though Teresa said she was out of shape I still expected her to be running fast, but before we hit the 1K mark and the seawall I went ahead of them. I did the first kilometer in 4:45, a minute slower than my time in another 5K race about three months ago, so I knew I'd better get going!
The one good thing about running the first K so slow was continually passing people for the rest of the race. We ran along the seawall for a couple of kilometers, and then turned right and down some paths before coming out onto it again, with only 2 kilometers to go! At the 4K point we could already hear the announcer at the finish line, and this seemed to make everyone speed up. Soon we were running along a path towards the finish and then we hit a hill going over a bridge, which slowed everyone up. I passed a guy who I'd been following for quite some time, but he was labouring going up the hill now, and said "Good job." to myself and other runners going by him, even though he was struggling just trying to catch his breath to keep going.
Finally we were over the hill getting some energy back as we knew the finish line was near. I ran into the finish chute and over the line at the Stanley Park Pavilion and heard announcer Steve King say something about a race I'd won, and accepted a big can of coconut water from a fellow who was passing them out. I ran into Mark Pinckard and he asked how it went. I mistakenly told him and other people that I ran faster than last week, but I was actually slower! Soon Ingo came in and we talked about the race but I told him we'd better head to the food tents before they got too crowded.
We went in and they had Irish stew, granola, vegan fudge, potato chips, and some fantastic cupcakes ( with pink plus Irish Cream icings), along with some other goodies. Vas came in and we went around to the tables sampling everything, but soon the tent was packed with people and we decided to get out and into the fresh air. Lynette Baldock said hi as she went by with some friends, and Arnold came up and we all hung around for awhile. I had to head up to Kamloops to run a race the next day, so it wasn't too long before we said our goodbyes and that we'd see each other next Sunday at the Spring Run Off 8K, same place and time.
Here's an excellent short video of the race: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n--uGS9co6E&feature=youtu.be
I ended up 208 of 1807 overall, 10 of 44 in my age group, with a time of 22:14.
My next race was the River's Spring Run Off 10K in Kamloops, the next morning at 10 AM.