Thursday, May 9, 2013

Goodlife Toronto Half Marathon 2013

5th Half Marathon done!

I had forgotten that Goodlife is a much smaller race than Scotiabank. 4500 half marathoners at Goodlife versus 9600 at Scotiabank (looked this up). This explains the lack of booths at the expo. It was much smaller than Scotiabanks. I had been hoping to pick up a head band and renew my Canadian Running magazine subscription, but they weren't there and no headbands to be found. I did end up registering though for Midsummer Night's Race 15K (they lured me in with a free hat). Also picked up my "Boston We Run With You" shirt.

Morning of the race was a bit warmer than I would have like. I was wishing that the half marathon was starting at 7:30 with the marathoners, rather than at 8:30.

I took a cab to the start line instead of transit - best decision ever. 15 minutes in a comfy car rather than an hour+ standing on a bus. One of the things I like about Goodlife - it starts at Mel Lastman Square and the North York Civic Centre is open (indoor washrooms!!).

I made my way out to the start and watched for the 2:30 pace bunny. Finally found her 3 minutes before the race started. There was about 10 or so people following her.

We started out down Yonge Street at a good pace, especially considering we were dodging walkers (start corrals would have been nice). Looking at my splits, we were averaging 6:30/km so a bit quicker than needed. The group voted to speed walk up the wonderful hill that is Hogg's Hollow at the 4K mark. We lost part of the group at that point.

Took photo while running - didn't really work.

Around 6km in, our pace bunny had to pull out due to hip pain. Those that were still with her tried to stick together to keep the right pace. This worked out for the most part, but my whole strategy of "stick with the 2:30 pace bunny" left me completely unprepared. I didn't have 10/1's going on my garmin so I had to either wait for someone else to call the intervals or check my watch. I didn't have a pace band on so was trying to do math in my head while running to figure out the splits. Lesson 1 - BE PREPARED.

Still feeling good and enjoying the run down Yonge Street. Really enjoyed running down Rosedale Valley Road.

I started slowing down right after turning on Bayview, around 14K. Rosedale Valley Road had lovely trees making for a nice shady run. Bayview = bright hot sun. Not fun. My pace slowed down considerably. Was very much ready to be done.

Only smiling because I saw the camera.

My garmin was all over the place along Wellington and Front Street. Sometimes I would hit the route markers before my watch clocked them, sometimes after.

I was apparently running in a zig zag formation. It kept auto pausing. Lesson 2 - TURN OFF AUTO PAUSE.

I was very happy to turn down Bathurst than along Lakeshore to the finish line. This was really the only place other than the start line that had a good amount of spectators. I already knew that I wasn't going to make my 2:30 goal so just wanted to get in under 2:35.

Chip time: 2:33:03
Pace: 7:16/km
Previous Half Marathon PR: 2:37:50
Previous Half Pace: 7:29/km

After the race - grabbed a banana, some water and some chocolate milk. Managed to get my bag quickly once I found the bag check. Did some stretching by the water.

Watched the marathoners coming in.

 Managed to grab a TTC bus easily to Union Station.

 Even though I didn't hit my goal, I still improved by time by almost 5 minutes.  I also felt amazing for the first 13km. I really enjoyed running with the pace group for most of the race and I love the Goodlife course.


  1. Great recap! I really do love this race but thinking next year I am going to do the Misssissauga half. I was a bit worried about my bag. I didn't know how they were going to sort all those bags but when I finished I saw how they did it. Pretty organized if you ask me.

  2. Congrats on finishing! It was a hot one!

    Oh and Midsummer's is super fun. I've done it twice and loved it. It has a great vibe. I'm hoping to do it again this year (but am holding off all race decisions until my marathon is done) so maybe I will see you there!

  3. I signed up for Midsummer 15K at the Mississauga expo. Hope to see you there! Congrats on the PB. It may not have been your A goal but it was still a great run! Good for you.

  4. Congratulations, great result and PB! You look so strong in all your photos!

  5. Great race, congratulations; thats an awesome PB and a nice medal as well.

  6. Congratulations! And yes, some good lessons learned!
    Maybe I'll see you at Midsummer!