Saturday, June 12, 2010

A Huge Thank You!

Thank you so much to everyone who has contributed to my fundraising marathon effort in honour of my niece Alivia!

A total of $3,345 was raised for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation ($1,300 from the raffle and $2,045 from online donations)!

My heartfelt thank you to all the generous people who have supported the CCFF by providing online donations:
Beryl - Saskatoon
Bill and Carol - Saskatoon
Colleen - Saskatoon
Denise - Saskatoon
Doreen - Saskatoon
Janet - Saskatoon
Joyce - Saskatoon
Juan - Saskatoon
Laura - Saskatoon
Kate - Saskatoon
Peta - Saskatoon
Scot - Saskatoon
Alycia - Windsor
Carol - Windsor
Chris - Windsor
David - Windsor
Elaine - Windsor
Evelyn and John - Windsor
Rebecca - Calgary
Amelia - Garden Bay
Jen and Lou - Hamilton
Lynda - LaSalle
Natalie - Ottawa
Damian - Waterford
Brian - England
Corinna - England
Charlotte - England
Matthew - England
Simon - England
Vivien - England

Monday, May 31, 2010

CF Raffle Winners

As part of my fundraising effort for the CCFF, a raffle was organized with great prizes donated from a number of very generous individuals and organizations. A total of $1300 was raised from this raffle! Thank you for all of your support!

Below is a list of the prizes and winners of the raffle:
  • $180 gift certificate from Brainsport for the purchase of any Brainsport or Pedestrian shoes - Winner: T. Summers, raffle ticket #130
  • Wide Open family pass (two adults, two children) to see all four puppet shows during their 2010-2011 season ($128 value) - Winner: Carrie Ogden, raffle ticket #250
  • Bike tune-up from the Bike Doctor ($50 value) - Winner: Stan and Sheryl Harper, raffle ticket #50
  • Bike tune-up from Bike Universe ($40 value) - Winner: C. E. Fischer, raffle ticket #326
  • SIGG water bottled donated by Brainsport ($25 value) - Winner: Wynne Nicholson, raffle ticket #60
  • Pass for a week of unlimited yoga classes at Hot Yoga on 20th ($20 value) - Winner: Eldon Thorson, raffle ticket #482
  • Pass for a week of unlimited yoga classes at Hot Yoga on 20th ($20 value) - Winner: Lisa Bissonnette, raffle ticket #202
  • Ride for the Breath of Life; t-shirt donated by the local CCFF Chapter - Winner: Darlene Scott, raffle ticket #331

Saskatchewan Marathon! 5:11:26

Five hours, eleven minutes and 26 seconds and I completed the 32nd Saskatchewan Marathon on Sunday May 30th in honour of my niece Alivia and for the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation!

Chris and I ready at 6 am to head over to the race course.

The first 10 km or so took us down by our house and around the boathouse and then north along the river. Tim and the kids came to cheer us on as we jogged by about 8 am.

It may be hard to notice but attached to my hat are sparkles and "For Alivia" pinned to it.

Our friend Crystal (ironwoman extraordinaire) was running the half marathon and spotted Finnegan and Keira before we came by shortly afterwards.

Finnegan and Keira "surprised" us at River Landing.

Margie cheered us on over by the Vimy Memorial. The weather was cool but the rain held off for the race, so the race conditions were actually really good, considering the downpour we had the day before. I think this is a beautiful shot of us jogging along the river, framed by the trees, with the University bridge in the background.

I think it was around the 24 km mark (all the kms seems like a blur now!) that the mobile cheering section caught up with us and followed us along the course for the rest of the race.

What troupers and great support!

If we got too cold they would provide jackets or mittens, then when we got too warm we would give them our stuff to carry!

Most movements after the halfway point just plain hurt but we kept on plodding. I would have waves of going for a couple km when it would feel as though I was getting into a groove of sorts and then other times each step was painful...that was usually when Chris would say "you're not smiling" and I'd make a grimace and just keep going.

Off we go across the Circle Drive bridge to head to the east side. The course over by the University was pretty chilly but we kept on plodding.....

Finally heading into the last few this time is was just a matter of trying to keep the legs moving, one foot in front of the next! I found whenever we stopped for water and shot blok breaks and walked, it was very hard to start up again. My knees in particular would just scream, "what were you thinking!" So we tried to keep jogging as much as possible.

Unfortunately, with all the water breaks (along with all the hydration from the day before!) it meant a lot of "pit stops" for me as well. Fortunately there were plenty of port-a-potties along the route. We figured if I hadn't needed to stop so often we probably could have shaved about half an hour off our time! But when you gotta go....

Earlier Chris had said that people tend to run marathons in three stages, first with their head, then with their body and finally with their hearts.

At the 32 km mark (which had been the longest run I had done to date), Chris motivated me in saying that those first 32 km had been for me and now the last 10 km to the finish were going to be for Alivia.

I gave it everything I had heading into the homestretch and to the finish line!

Janet came out too to cheer us on with Margie. She was out on street near the finish and when I saw her cheering I just about lost it with tears and so had to run by without even looking at her or I would have been a blubbery mess before even crossing the finish line!

Huffing and puffing and feeling like my lungs would explode at the top!

Fiver hours later here I am blasting across the finish line! Well...maybe not blasting but running as fast as I possibly could (and most of that was up a little hill) using up every little bit of energy that might still be left in me! As you can see the mobile cheering section followed me all the way!

Here's Chris coming across the finish line just shortly after me. His motivation, positive attitude and good humor kept me plodding for most of the race with a smile on my face.

They wrapped us in plastic sheets after the race, which I have say did the trick at keeping the heat in until I was able to change into some warmer, dry clothes.

Chocolate chip cookies and chocolate milk are always great after a race!

Great support from both family and friends is the only way I managed to stick with the training and accomplish the marathon. It was a tremendous experience and it has certainly gotten me into the habit of running and wanting to improve, but I don't have any ambitions to improve upon my 5:11:26! Next year, I will participate in the Great Strides Walk to help with fundraising for CF and hope to do the Spin Off Spadina Triathlon for fun!

I would like to express my heartfelt thank you to everyone who as helped me out over the last six months in training and fundraising for this event! I would especially like to thank the sposors for the raffle, those who purchased or help to sell tickets for the raffle, and well as those who donated online to the CCFF - your generosity is greatly appreciated!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Week 26 - 10 hours to go!

Tomorrow is the bid day!!! A couple easy runs this week (albeit I ran my fastest 5 km ever at 31 minutes!) and a yoga class on Friday and I'm ready to go...or as ready as I can be given 26 weeks of training. It has been raining all day and I wonder how the clouds can possibly hold any more liquid... so am hoping that it may stop by the morning.

Our friend Chris is going to run with me tomorrow, rain or shine, for the 42 km. Here we are in our fancy new running shirts and numbers.

While many spectators will have gone home after the first couple of hours, we are expecting the mobile cheering section to come out and find us somewhere along the way and greet us at the finish line!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Week 25 - One week to go!!!

This Sunday morning was cool and rainy as I headed out with Ollie for a 10 km run. Seems hard to believe 25 weeks of jogging have gone by and now I'm just a week away from participating in the Saskatchewan Marathon.

The rain started up again shortly after we had ventured out but we kept on going anyway - must be what it is like jogging in Vancouver! I was pleased with myself as I ran my fastest 10 km to date at 1 hour and 5 minutes. Slow of course by some standards but pretty good for me as I'm usually around the 1 hour 15 minute mark. There is no way I can keep that sort of pace for the actual marathon but it was good to know I could do at least that and I hope to eventually progress to a 10 km under 1 hour.

Needless to say, by the time we got back, we were both pretty drenched. "Wet rats return" (as Tim called us).

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Week 24 - Running in Ottawa

This past week I flew to Ottawa for a conference and had to leave at 5:30 am on Keira's 4th birthday.

We had a little party for her the day before and enjoyed a pooh bear cake with ice cream from the farmer's market.

While in Ottawa, I ran 8 km on Tuesday with Annie.

I took the "clown bike" (a great cruiser bike that I also used last year when I came to visit) to and from Natalie and Dean's house to the conference downtown, and one afternoon took a little tour along the bike paths over to the Quebec side around by the Museum of Civilization.

The weather was great and tulips were everywhere!

On Friday, Nat (who will be running a half marathon on May 30th in Ottawa) and I ran 6 km together and then on Sunday we ran for 12+ km along the Ottawa River.

In the afternoon we all headed over to Gatineau Park and hiked around Pink Lake, before I had to head to the airport.

Week 23

Not much to report from this week...and I'm certainly late with this posting! I ran during the week and also did the scheduled 16 km on Sunday with Ollie in the morning before taking the kids to swim class. Not much else to report!