Sixth Race Complete!

So this morning was my SIXTH RACE.

Kinda crazy when you think about it.

On January 17th, I ran for the first time in my life. 3.01km in 24:54 with a pace of 8:16/km on the treadmill. I felt like death and it was totally the end of the world.

And today… well, I learned a lot about running, racing and life.

I registered for the Starbucks Run for Women… to keep me on track with my running goals… but also because I am a big supporter of Because I am a Girl Canada {and that’s where the proceeds were heading!}.

Every other race I have done this year… I have done with a partner. Every one except the first one, I did with Haley… my running partner in crime, goal pusher, pavement motivator and all around fab girlfriend. This month though, we’re stretched thin with training and lives — she did a race solo last weekend and I did one solo today.

Let me tell you — friends keep you on track.

The 10K race started at 9:30am, with keynote speaker {and Olympic Gold Medalist!} Jennifer Heil on at 9am.

No big deal right? We’ve had numerous races that started earlier than this one. Well I spent the morning being my usual disorganized self… worked on client requests, cleaned the house — you know, the usual. Before you knew it, 8:50am — and I was still at home.

All of that reading, work and training that I have committed to down the drain. All of a sudden I lost all my running and racing knowledge. No outfit picked out. No thought out breakfast. No HYDRATION. Nothing.

Absolute chaos in fact.

So I arrived at the race a few minutes after 9:30am. I could see all the ladies running out of UBC Thunderbird Stadium and was immediately overwhelmed. I ran around looking for bag check, took off my layers, went pee and raced to the start line. At this point all the 5K racers were lined up {they had a 9:45am start}.

I headed straight to the front and told the Running Room dude that I was late and doing the 10K. He gave me an irritated look and told me it was fine I go. So I went… and went… and went…

Neon on. Tunes on. Everyone kept on staring at me… shouting ’10K? 10K?’… Yes, 10 freaking kilometres. Yes, I’m late. Yes, yes, yes — let me run. I didn’t see walkers till just after 1K and runners until about 1.5K… I figure I started about 9:40am.

I felt like I was playing catch up the entire race. I ran my heart out and at just before 3K, I threw up in my mouth {that may have been too much information… :|}. There were shitloads of women on the trails at this point. I swallowed the nasty in order to save face. I needed water in a really bad way at that point…

I continued to pass more and more and more women. The trails were nasty, mud flying everywhere, people were tripping and sometimes it was so congested, you had to stop so you didn’t tackle someone. I had never trail run before {and I’ve been doing zero hills training}… they were quite the distraction. I kept my eyes focused on the ground, making sure I didn’t slip or trip. Around 6K I was dying, 7K I began to see the light and 8K I knew I would be out of the forest soon. Oh and I did intervals most of 7 to 9K.

I passed the finish line at 1:06:25:59…

But wait, I started about 10ish minutes late…! As soon as I saw the time, I thought shit damn, this horrible race might have been a personal best. I went from dead last to 128th place — which means I {physically} passed 339 women.

Post-race I had a chance to meet Nikki Scott and ran into Lulu and Seawheeze Advocate, Michelle Davies!

I had my fingers crossed for the official results. I was hoping that they would tell me my actual time — and that actual time would be something amazing! Unfortunately the timer got my stats wrong {obviously my gun time and chip time shouldn’t be the same!}. I always always use my Nike+GPS app, but I lost service in the middle of the race and the app went screwy on my time.

Unofficially I figure I came in about 58-59 minutes. I know that I can in under an hour because Mike had text me at 9:40am {I heard it bing just as I crossed the start line} and I text Reagan at 10:41am saying I was done {and I’d already had a banana haha}.

If that’s the case, I actually placed around 30th overall (467 women) and 4th place for my age group (50 women).



So the worst race of my life, was the best race of my life? Correct. I learned a lot on this race. I learned that my body needs to be fuelled. I re-learned that all those ‘training habits’ like knowing what you’re going to wear, picking out your music, being up early, drinking water till you pee clear, etc etc, ACTUALLY MATTER.

I also learned that I’m capable of kicking some serious ass if I put my mind to it. Part of the fun with racing is doing it with another person — getting amped up together, cheering each other on, etc.

One thing I know is that I cannot throw up in my mouth again.

And I also cannot show up late again.

More on the race:

I feel blessed to have participated in a lot of great races. Unfortunately this one was the worst to date. I love Starbucks, love Because I am a Girl Canada, love the Running Room, love many of the sponsors — but the logistics just didn’t work out.

  • The markers were incorrect and the route was substantially more than 10K — some say 10.6K, others say 10.8K.
  • The trails were extremely crowded and 100% unsafe from 2-6K.
  • The course was open to the public — runners, bikers and dogs were coming straight at us from 3-7K.
  • The final water station closed at the 1:00 mark. At 1 hour, only 50 of 467 had completed the race.

I could go on and on about nit picky things, but those are the big things… and in my opinion, they’re pretty major.

On to the next!

Next race is the Longest Day Race on June 15th at UBC. I had planned for a 10K, but I downgraded to the 5K. UBC and I are currently in an ‘it’s complicated’ relationship. :)

PS – These pictures from the race prove my feeling of death at the finish line. Truth.


  1. Kymme June 12, 2012

    Awesome job Jillian! You are such a wonderful inspiration! So proud of you!

  2. richardspearson June 12, 2012

    Jillian, Jillian, Jillian. You are a complete crack up – you made my day – and you should be proud of your run. 10k is a healthy distance and your time isn’t too shabby – especially with your limited training! Funny I did a 100k bike race last weekend – I ride a lot but usually 30k at most – so I had a similar experience. The course climbed 3,450 feet and I thought I was going to die at just over 50k going up yet another hill. I got stopped at a train track with two young gals probably your age who were also hitting their wall – so we joined forces and drafted for about 8k and then got separated in a crowd of riders. (6500 people did this ride.) Then right near the end with about 10k to go I am using my last bit of energy to keep peddling and I hear Scott, Scott and these two gals came zinging by drafting behind about 10 riders – jump in behind us! So I dug deep with literally everything I had and caught up with them basically getting pulled along to the end!!! I actually felt good when it was all over – and I did my personal best 3 hr. 56 min. (including two 5 min. stops) but couldn’t have done it without my two little teammates…

  3. […] 10K on June 9: Starbucks Run for Women {58:58} || Race Recap […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.