First things first, I had the opportunity to meet up with Laurel and Marci on Friday evening for dinner. The first (and last) time we met was at the expo the day before my first marathon back in 2008, when I was soaking up advice from these seasons pros.
It’s amazing to see how far we’ve all come in the last couple of years – unfortunately, we failed to take a picture! Doh!! We’ll make sure 3 years don’t go by before we get together again. Should be easier now that we’re all on the tri circuit. 😉
Race morning I headed to the zoo and got there about 45 minutes before the start, which is actually late by my standards! I was pretty laid back about everything since I was only planning to run for fun. I wandered around for a while checking things out and keeping an eye out for friends.
I managed to connect with Laurel and we chatted away while waiting for the start. We even remembered a photo!
I heard someone call my name and spotted my beloved Dr. Pain working the start line with the elites. Hmmm, how much faster do I need to get for my physiotherapist to come to all of my races? 🙂
Before long we watched the first wave start and I called my buddy who I was supposed to be running with to see where he was – since our wave was starting in 5 minutes!!
Laurel went to line up in her wave and Dave showed up just in the nick of time. We sneaked into our corral literally seconds before the start.
The plan was to take it nice and slow. We started in the parking lot and made our way along some back roads before heading into the zoo for the fun part.
I slowed down or stopped to take pictures of the animals at every opportunity and had a blast soaking up the sights. It’s a windy, narrow course for the most part with lots of small ups and downs to keep things interesting.
There was some entertainment along the way in addition to the animals. These guys were awesome!
Dave hasn’t exactly been running this summer… at all… and was definitely working to keep running while I yammered his ear off and obnoxiously snapped photos constantly. I like to think I was providing a good distraction.
Pretty soon we could hear the crowds and made a few final twists and turns toward the finish. Quick stop to smooch his baby girl, and we were done!
It was a fun morning! Next up – Oakville Half Marathon on Sunday! (incase you were wondering why I took it easy on this one….)