Sunday, January 23, 2011

Race Report: Robbie Burns 8K

This is the 3rd year in a row I have participated in the Robbie Burns 8K. This fun race is sponsored by the Burlington Running Club, and is one of my favourite winter running events.  I enjoy running it because it is a great value chip-timed race, has  great swag,  and being in the 3rd week of January,  it helps beat the winter dull drums and get me motivated for the upcoming spring races. The Scottish theme of the event is really fun:

This year did not disappoint.  The race registration was 30 dollars,  and for that fee every runner received a dri-fit running vest:

It's unisex, and a little boxy,  but cute!  I love when race directors think outside of the box and provide participants with unique useful swag!  The two previous years were fleece pajama pants, and a cotton plaid towel.

Unfortunately leading up to race day, the side of my left foot had been bothering me all week. I sat out my long run scheduled for Saturday,  and I iced and took ibuprofen like crazy in hopes of being able to participate in the race.

Race morning was freezing cold,  and I am not joking. Yes,  I live in Canada, and yes it can be cold,  but it was abnormally frigid race morning.  It was -17C/1.4F but with the wind chill -27C/-17F!!!  Brr!! (insert explicits)
Wanting to roll over and go back to bed,  I instead decided to assess my foot.  It was much better and there was no pain either, so I was ready to run!  My friends M and M came over to my house,  and Hubs drove us about an hour to Burlington to the race.

We picked up our race kits,  and enjoyed a little pre-race entertainment.  Thankfully, the runners are able to keep warm inside a local high school gym,  complete with flushing toilets.  There is not a porta potty in sight for this race!!

There is a bag-pipe procession outside to the start line signalling that it is time for runners to line up at the start.  We decided that since it was a cold day,  and my foot was iffy, to line up towards the back and treat the race as a harder training run rather than a race.

I was happy when we started running that I felt no pain, and we settled into a comfortably uncomfortable pace.  The race sold out in November, so the field was crowded,  and although we were trying to take it easy,  we had to weave around many runners,  so we were speeding along faster than anticipated.

Surprisingly we all felt quite warm.  I had worn two layers on the bottom (long johns and fleece tights) and four layers on top (tank, base layer top, fleece top, and running jacket).  I also had a double layer of mitts,  hat, and a neck warmer!  (I don't mess around with -30C)

The Sun came out when we turned South and ran towards Lake Ontario. It was absolutely gorgeous out!  As much as winter running can be tough to get out the door when its cold,  once you are out there, there is nothing like it,  it really is beautiful.  I enjoyed the beautiful homes along the lake shore and tried to take my mind off of the pain of a shorter faster run.

Before we knew it,  we were crossing the finish,  done! (can you see the icicles on my hat?)

Time:  44:04 -5.31km/min (8:52mil/min).  It was a course PW,  I ran this course last year in 41:xx,  but I was happy with the result,  considering the temperature, my foot, and my current fitness level.  Thanks to my fast friends M and M for running with me!

After the race,  there was a full breakfast - oatmeal, bagels and cream cheese, cookies, bananas, hot chocolate, coffee.  They also have the awards in the school auditorium with door prizes. There are some serious fast runners for this small race.  The top three females in my age group finished under 34 minutes,  and the winning female finished in about 27 minutes!

The race has me ready to up the intensity of training for the spring,  and I am so glad I did it.  Hope you all had a great weekend too!

Thanks for reading!


Marky Mark said...

Good job! My sentiments exactly in terms of how beautiful it was running south towards the lake and then along lakeshore. If anything my similar layering resulted in my feeling a bit too warm and all layers were soaked when I took them off.

robison52 said...

That Dri-fit running vest looks pretty cool, sure beats the swag I get from Las Vegas events, which is usually the typical white t-shirt.

I hope your left foot gets better soon, you are a true running addict to run when hurt!!

Laura said...

Awesome job...If you saw a lonely runner coming the opposite way on Lakeshore yesterday...that was me. The sun was awesome yesterday....

Marky Mark said...

Laura I did see a couple of runners going the opposite way on Lakeshore!

So what do we really use the vest for and what would it replace?

Lily on the Road said...

What a HOOT *insert Scottish accent here*

Cute vest! I love the first of the year winter is so much fun to catch up with people you haven't seen since the fall.

Marky Mark, I received a similar vest years ago and use it as an extra layer to protect my core when I'm running or cycling in colder temps.

Stacey said...

Great job! I like the vest! I also love the bag pipes! There's just something about them..almost makes me weepy when I hear them. (:

Jess said...

Brrr! Hats off to you for racing in the cold!

chris mcpeake said...

Congrats on a great race. It was a frosty one for sure. Maybe I will run into you at ATB

lindsay said...

mmm hello postrace meal! yum. congrats on the pw! :) gotta start somewhere, plus it was frigid cold! gross.

Teamarcia said...

Woot for a warm gym and some nice swag. Great job in those temps!

Amanda said...

That's sweet swag! I have never seen a vest like that as a race shirt. Nice!! I really want to do an 8k, that seems like a great distance.

Marlene said...

Some friends from my clinic ran on the weekend and raved about the race - especially the food! Will have to keep it in mind for next year.

Glad your foto held up for you. Congrats!!!

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What a HOOT *insert Scottish accent here*

Cute vest! I love the first of the year winter is so much fun to catch up with people you haven't seen since the fall.

Marky Mark, I received a similar vest years ago and use it as an extra layer to protect my core when I'm running or cycling in colder temps.

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