This weekends running escapades were interesting to say the least.
On Saturday I had originally planned on hitting the trails for my last long run before starting to taper, but the weather had other plans. We had a lot of run Friday overnight and it continued early Saturday morning, so we lazed around instead of running then headed out at 10:30am. The rain had stopped for the moment but the skies were still threatening, so I didn’t bother bringing my camera, of course I would later regret this.
Dan had decided since the weather wasn’t co-operating that this would be a “character building” and took us our to the dreaded Spit. It ended up being a rather pleasant run there as the weather was keeping most (sane) people inside. On our way we saw some men assembling a cargo net obstacle, that seemed weird and then we could see a beer tent in a factory parking lot which just made us thirsty. Turned out there was an urban warrior dash (or something like that) happening on the spit. The event hadn’t started but the volunteers were getting obstacles and aid stations set-up. From chatting to these friendly volunteers we discovered the race was approximately 10km with 8 or so obstacles. Having run our own obstacle course not too long ago, it was interesting to see the set up (much smaller scale, and a much flatter course). While we were out on the Spit we could see that it was raining again downtown and commented that maybe the Spit wasn’t such a bad place to run. However by the time we were heading off the Spit it was raining and the first was of urban warriors were now coming at us. We cheered as we ran against the flow of the race, some people near the end of the wave even asked if we were the first place couple (which we replied yes)! The race had only started about 15 minutes prior, that would’ve been one quick 10km, especially with all the obstacles.
As we started heading northbound on the Don Trail, it stopped raining and the sun was actually trying to come out. Up until now we had had to go around a few bigger puddles but we had expected that down on the waterfront. What we weren’t prepared for was that the Don River had swelled and put the trail under water from Queen St to Riverdale Park (about 1km)! At first I thought this was funny, but we literally had to slog through knee deep (at times)rushing, nasty, dirty river water. Dan left me at Riverdale Park, and watched me (from the overpass bridge) slog through to the bridge that would get me across to the other side of the Don River (where it was a little higher). It was a bit dryer for a couple of km and then I had to go through this tunnel thing (which I don’t like at the best of times) and it was full of water too. There was a man on his bike trying to decided whether or not he wanted to proceed and as he saw my sloshing through water above my knees, he wisely decided to turn around. He asked where I was headed, and told me that I would encounter one more water passing and a section where the water had gone down but had left behind some slick mud. I thanked him for the info and started running again, listening to the squish, squash of my shoes. Sure enough I had one more “river cross” and the slick mud was kind of fun. The rest of the run was uneventful and I made it home wet but in one piece.
Sunday I was up at 5:30 because I had to run 22km to the start of a 5km race (more on that later). I love running early when it’s quiet and there is hardly anyone around…except for the guy run/shuffling through Cedarvale Park talking on his phone on speaker!!! Nice. I said hello really loud to make sure the person he was talking to didn’t think I was ignoring him. I made great time across the Belt Line, because I needed to pee and the next bathroom wasn’t until the cemetery. After my bathroom break I felt sluggish and started to regret my 22km warm-up for a 5km race, but I arrived with a few minutes to spare. The lady at the bag check wanted to know why I was checking my water pack, I explained that I ran 22km to get here, and I could manage 5km without water and fuel (I hoped). Her face when I said 22km, priceless.
Planned Mileage: 99km
For a total of 101km!!!
Days Run: 5
Excuses: None! I nailed it, this being my last big week of mileage I really just wanted to hit the numbers.