Upping your distance is no joke. After running a good handful of 5km races for the past 3 years, I thought it would be
fun a good challenge to test my legs in an 8km race. I still don’t know if it was a good idea or not, but alas, I went for it anyway.
The Kamloops Marathon is actually a Boston Marathon qualifying race, so it’s a pretty big deal here in town. Kyle signed up for the half marathon, while Isla signed up for the 3km run. Kyle’s stepdad was doing the full marathon with a goal to qualify, so we were super excited to all be running a portion of the race with him!
Kyle was out the door suuuuuuuper early Sunday morning as the half and full marathoners left the start line at 6am. While Isla and I didn’t have to head out the door until just after 7, I had a pretty good case of pre-race jitters and didn’t fall back to sleep when I heard Kyle wake up just after 4am. I didn’t plan on drinking coffee, but I figured a half-cup would probably do me good all things considered. I eventually showered and got dressed before waking Isla up to get ready at 6:15. (Norah stayed the night at my mom’s so we didn’t have to anger the honey badger!)
Kyle’s mom picked Isla and up right on time and we got to the race venue with about a half-hour for me to spare before my 8am start time. (Isla’s race started at 8:30.) I met up with a coworker of Kyle’s who asked if it would be alright to run with me and we wandered to the start line.
Now, I’ve never actually ran a competitive race with anyone before, but it was nice to have to company! She is a way more seasoned runner than I am, and I’m more than certain that I held her back. I had to take a lot of walking breaks because I was cramping in my diaphragm a lot, but she never left me in the dust. (The crazy woman worked a 12-hour night shift before the race and was going back to work another night shift that evening! Mad props to her, for sure!)
That last stretch was a doozy – lots of walking and thinking to myself, “Is it over yet?” I had to take one last walking break during the final stretch before giving that last push to the finish. Kyle was actually there at the finish line cheering me on, and it was what I needed to sprint across the finish line. (He finished his half-marathon with a time of 2:06:55!)
I didn’t quite make my goal time because of all the walking I ended up doing, but I’m still pretty happy with my time, especially for my first 8km race. It ended up being 48:23, so I think it’s a pretty good benchmark for next year!
After I had caught my breath, resisted the urge to barf my guts out (seriously), and hugged Kyle’s coworker for pushing me through, I met up with Kyle and we waited for Isla to come across the finish line! Kyle’s mom ran the race with her, and the word is that Isla did awesome on the course, only taking a few walking breaks and chatting almost the entire time! She finished with an official time of 23:47 and Kyle and I are so stinking proud of her!
It wasn’t too long after Isla had finished that Kyle’s stepdad made his way across the finish line for the full marathon. He slayed it and finished with a Boston-qualifying time of 3:32:35! While he hasn’t decided whether or not he’ll apply to tackle Boston next year, we’re all super proud and inspired by him!
Isla and I hit up the pancake breakfast before we headed home to clean up, change, and get Norah from my mom’s. After Norah’s nap we headed down to Kyle’s mom’s for a well-earned pool party! It was the perfect way to end the day, for sure!
I look forward to doing this race again next year; the organizers did an amazing job setting up the course and I can’t thank them enough!