Monthly Archives: April 2012

Yonge St 10K: The Highs and Lows of Race Day

6.00 am: Alarm goes off. URRRGGHHHH. Hit snooze.

6.10 am: Alarm goes off. URRRGGHHHH. Hit snooze.

6.20 am: Drag myself out of bed but immediately regret my decision. Why did I sign up for this race?!

6.25 am: Weather check. 4 degrees outside, feels like -2. Further debate the merits of  going back to my warm, cozy bed.

6.26 am: Relieved to see that the expected high is 14 degrees, with a little sunshine and no rain. Perfect running weather! Riding on the (slight) high of hitting the weather jackpot, I start to warm up to the idea of doing the race.

7.30 am: Feeling uber-organized after I make it to the College streetcar on time. It’s a sign, I CAN do this!

7.40 am: See other runners as I get off at Yonge and College. Phew, I’m in the right spot for the bus to start line!

7.50 am: Streetcar driver comes past and tells us we’re all waiting in the wrong spot!  Trudge up to Bay St.

8.25 am: Arrive at the start line and mingle among the sea of ugly race shirts (pumpkin orange, really?!)

8.35 am: Random guy comes up to me and says “Good morning, Elissa.” I stare at him in panic, my mind racing to figure out how I must know him. Then I realize…

8.40 am: Hand sanitizer in the portable toilets smells like tequila. Almost vomit.

8.45 am: Get herded into my race corral. Nerves are setting in, I don’t want to do this!!!

9.06 am: Race starts! Crank “Jump Around” on my iPod and set off down Yonge St.

9.12 am:  1 km down and feeling good. I zoom past someone (they’re walking, but it still counts!).

9.15 am: First hill. Still finding my rhythm, it’s a struggle.

9.20 am: 3 km Gatorade stop, alllrriiiiiigghhht.

9.25 am: Side stitch- oouuuucchh!

9.38 am: The morale-boosting halfway point! I keep the spring in my step with “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and an easy downhill stretch from Bloor to College.

9.45 am: The spring in my step is now akin to a tangled slinky. I’m fading fast and dying for the next drink stop.

9.48 am: I hit the 7 km drink station. Bolstered by the refreshment, I crank up the “Journey” and settle in for the last 3 km.

9.51 am: See the ACTUAL 7 km road marker – nooooooo! 3 km to go – again!

10.04 am: Where is that [insert expletive] 8km marker?!!! I can’t be running that slow…..can I?!  I can’t bear the thought of still having over 2 km left to run. Frantically search iPod for a song to help me focus. “Eye of the Tiger”- that’ll do it!!

10.07 am: Confirmation that I missed the 8km marker – 9 km sign up ahead!! I pick up the pace, the end is in sight!

10.11 am: I see the finish line, decide to sprint it out.

45 seconds later: AmIThereYet, AmIThereYet, AmIThereYet, AmIThereYet, AmIThereYet, AmIThereYet…


10.20 am: Meet up with my friend. He did the run in 53 minutes without training. Hate him a little bit. (Matt, if you’re reading this, it lasted 1 minute, tops!).  Our excitement heightens when we spot what we’ve been eagerly waiting for…

10.30 am: Free beer!

10.35am: Free yogurt!

10.40 am: Free bagel!

10.45 am: Talk my way into a second free beer!

11.30 am: Free coffee!

12.00 pm: Eggs Benny

12.00 am: Sleeping like a baby

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Begin blog…….now!

Ok. First blog post. Here we go. Anytime now. Now? Yes, now. Okaaaaaaaay go!

For my first post, I thought I’d acquiesce to logic and share my motivation for creating this blog.

There are literally millions of people vying for a slice of the online space through blogging; why should I add to the already saturated market? This is a question I posed to myself many times before starting this blog, but a couple of recent events forced me to reconsider my position.

Getting sucked into the Twittersphere

I am, by nature, a late adopter when it comes to technology of any sort (still clinging onto my 2007 Nokia phone for dear life) and Twitter was no exception. But after finally jumping on the bandwagon, I saw that there was this fascinating and tangled web of people and organizations all over the world interacting with each other and sharing thoughts, opinions, information, ideas, feelings and images. I realized that I wanted to be a part of that online community.

Planning the great Canadian road trip 

This summer I’m heading for the hills (blog name, *cough*) and doing the iconic cross-Canada road trip for three months. Although I always keep a travel journal for myself (compulsory when you have the memory capacity of an 80 year old), I wanted an easy way to be able to share my experiences with family and friends- especially those back in Oz who I am shamefully bad at keeping in regular contact with. (I am also hoping this blog atones for refusing my parents’ Facebook friend request.)

And maybe, just MAYBE, some people I don’t even know might read this.

It wasn’t so long ago that the trusty Lonely Planet guidebook was my primary source of travel info. Now, like most people, the internet is my “go to” for trip planning. No longer do you have to turn up at a hostel and “hope for the best”; you can check out recent recommendations and ratings beforehand. While I admit this does take some of the adventure out of travel, at least bedbugs are less of a worry! It would be cool if I could, at least in a small way, return the favour for all the travel tips I’ve gleaned online.

Wednesday nights with writers

This year I decided to foster my inner spelling/punctuation/grammar geek and do a copy editing course (alert me immediately if you notice any of the aforementioned errors on my site!). Since January, every Wednesday night has been spent with a group of people who primarily write for a living.

By listening to their experiences and doing a lot of writing exercises in class I came to see the satisfaction and challenge in composing something that contributes to the public sphere of knowledge and understanding (or lack of, if it’s written badly!). It forces you to critically analyze your writing in a way that does not (and should not) happen when you write for yourself. What it means for this blog is that my writing will (hopefully) become less about organizing my thoughts and “venting” (although I’m sure I’ll rant about SOMETHING at some stage) and more about having a creative outlet and contributing to the online dialogue.

Thanks for reading; I hope you’ll continue to check out what I have to say.

[If you want to be alerted via email when I post new content, there is a link on the first page which allows you to “follow” me]

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