Without realising it, I have set myself up for a recurring theme for the spring of 2017: hilly marathons.
I assure you, this was not intentional. I loathe hills. I cannot train on hills (as we have none in Grand Cayman). I can’t even see a hill. My biggest hill I run over on a training run is a speed bump. True story, friends.
So when I convinced a couple of my girl friends to run the Bay of Fundy marathon with me this coming June 2017, I knew there were hills and it would be a tougher race than I am used to -yet I didn’t exactly spell it out for them that it would not only be a very beautiful race, but also a challenging one. In all honesty, I wasn’t really trying to deceive them. I think I am in a little bit of denial about the hills being there myself. I’ll deal with them when I get there. Now that we are all registered and are booking flights for that race-cation, I am being reminded of the hills by my friends on a regular basis. I hope they will still talk to me after the race. Another true story.
Bay of Fundy Marathon elevation profile
My first marathon of the year was in Bermuda, which I found out on race day was a lot hillier than I remember. A lot. Only one big hill, but non-stop rolling up and downs pretty much the whole course. When you aren’t used to running any hills, they take a serious toll on your legs and energy when you do run them; I had one of my slowest finishing times in Bermuda and I couldn’t walk normally for four days (usually is just a day or two after a race). My quads were not impressed.
Well, Lashell and Sharon, you can have the bigger laugh over me because I finally took a look at the elevation profile for my next marathon, the Chattanooga Marathon (March 5, 2017). This race was selected for the date and the location, both of which were perfect for when I wanted to go and allowing me to visit with some friends, all while running in a new state. Now that I’m a month away and starting to get into race mode for this one, I went back to the race website for some info. I found this and thought you would appreciate the look at this and laugh at my decisions:
(Notice the extreme elevation gain overall AND the more than 26.2 mi distance.)
Perhaps I should learn a lesson from this. Maybe that lesson is to look at the elevation profile of a race BEFORE signing up for it. Or maybe the lesson is to not look at elevation profile at all because the course will be what it is. And if I really want to run somewhere, I should just do it without fear or a preconceived idea of what it will be like. I should remember my promise to run with joy and approach each marathon with the excitement it deserves.
And to most definitely start using the hill interval setting on the treadmill to somewhat prepare me for the road ahead. Or I may not be able to walk for a week. Wish me luck!