Today I had planned on a fab post listing the 5 awesome tips to follow in order to be well prepared for your first Canadian winter night race. Instead this has become the 5 things that FREAKED me out for my first Canadian winter night race!!
Here’s what happened…….
1. Run on the route
Twice this week, I drove 35minutes away in order to train on the course for my upcoming race which is 11 short days away. I have never done this before but have heard it’s a wise choice and it can really help in being properly prepared to run your best possible race. So off I went! Then I started and holy crap…this route is insanely hard! It is all uphill, all of it, forever and ever. The entire 5km is uphill, I nearly collapsed. Both times. Now I ‘m just scared to go back.
2. Cold weather clothing
Okay so I normally am well prepared for cold weather running. However when the entire race is uphill, I sweat a heck of a lot more than normal and my running gear no longer works for me. I started out frozen from -13 degrees Celsius plus windchill and ended up feeling like I was running in July and wanting to literally strip down to shorts and a tank top! Must recalculate the amount of clothing.
3. Headlamps and headaches
This race starts at 5:30pm, it is already pitch black by then so I went out and bought a headlamp. Turns out, headlamps are super uncomfortable and give me migraines First it was too loose, then too tight, I fiddled with it for most of the run and ended up taking it off and nearly threw it into the bushes I was so frustrated.
4. Night vision goggles
Ummmm…..so turns out I can’t see ANYTHING at night!! Now I should have known this as I wear glasses to drive at night but sadly the thought never occurred to me. I should probably wear my glasses all the time (for distance) but both glasses and contacts always end up being uncomfortable so I just don’t. I’m quite used to slightly blurry vision and it works well for me. Except when running in the forest at night!! Where the heck is trail??? I seriously need some night vision goggles.
5. Yaktrax, schmaktrax
All good when running on the streets around my house but not so much on this trail. With all the uphill, they just kept sliding off my shoes or getting stuck too much to one side causing me to run, hop, skip and eventually trip and fall. Without them I slipped on the ice, with them I tripped over my own feet. Yet another thing that is just not working for me.
Honestly the entire time I was out there, I just kept moving in order to try and get back to my car. I can’t even say I actually ran. I was more of a trotting, stumbling, hopping, cursing hot mess.
11 days to go….for the first time ever, I’m actually dreading a race.