Posts Tagged ‘west vancouver’

West Van Run

Disclaimer: I received a free entry to the West Van Run weekend races as part of being a West Van Run Ambassador. Be sure to join the West Van Run Crew for social runs on Saturday mornings, and Thursday evening training!

With just over 48 hours before our departure for a 2-week vacation in Japan, the epic West Van Run Weekend 2017 launched in full superhero force! I’ve written about all of the enticements to run West Van Run, and the anticipation paid off with a fun, well-executed two-day event. Costumes, friends, PBs and a lot of goodies made the weekend a huge success!

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West Van Run

With less than two months to go until race weekend, my Spidey senses are tingling. That’s right – the West Van Run Superhero edition is just around the corner! And if you haven’t signed up yet, it’s time for me to convince you to pull on your tights, whip out that cape, and get people asking: “Who is that masked runner?”

There are a few new things in store for West Van Run 2017, along with the usual awesomeness you expect from this event! (more…)

Spirit of the Shore

Just a week after my Washington Road Trip with Brie, where we ran the North County Wine Run, I had the Spirt of the Shore Half Marathon on my roster. As one does, I had signed up for this race months ago, and it kind of slipped my mind. And although I have a race calendar, October was on the ‘next page’ – so I didn’t notice that I had back-to-back halfs until they were pretty much happening.

However, this was my first half marathon on the North Shore (including both West Vancouver and North Vancouver) – and we had the amazing support of the West Van Run Crew – so the experience was fantastic. No regrets…except for one wee error in judgement…but more on that later!

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Coho Run

Very early in my running career – way back in 2010 – I teamed up with a friend and entered the Coho Run. At 14 kilometres, it was the longest race I had ever participated in. The day dawned cloudy and miserable, and once the heavens opened – even draped in a garbage bag – I was drenched. Having had very little experience running in the rain, I kept that garbage bag on for several kilometres, until I was so hot I had to tear it off. By the end of the race, I felt bedraggled and alone – being so far behind most of the other runners – but a few stalwart supporters were there to cheer me across the finish line.

Fast forward to 2016 – and Debra (thanks for the photos!) encouraged me to sign up once again for the Coho Run. And the experience couldn’t have been better!

What is the Coho Run?

The Coho Run is a community race organized by the Coho Society – an organization formed to support “the protection and revitalization of North Shore salmon streams and rivers”. The race takes place to coincide with the Coho Festival, held annually in West Vancouver.

This point-to-point race is a great middle distance between a 10k and a half marathon, which is why I chose to tackle it 6 years ago. It’s a very unique ‘beach to bridge to beach to bridge to beach‘ race, as you’ll soon learn!

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Ambleside Mile

I’ll be honest. I hadn’t planned to run the Ambleside Mile this year. Having just returned from a couple of weeks in the UK – you can read about my running & sightseeing adventures in London, Yorkshire and Edinburgh (coming soon) – I really hadn’t done anything that could be considered ‘speed work’. But since West Van Run is the organizer, and because a bunch of my running buddies were going to be there, I decided to register.

Like the race itself, this will be a pretty short post!

Debra picked me up and we headed over to West Vancouver. Full disclosure: all of the photos in the post are thanks to Debra!

The sun was shining, it was getting hot. Debra and I did a wee warm-up run around the block, and then caught up with lots of our West Van Run Crew buddies.

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We gathered at the Start Line and, after a quick countdown, we were off.

Ambleside Mile

The route differed from last year, which started with a long downhill. Instead, we were running a loop, the same as we did in 2014. It’s a relatively flat course – starting with a very gentle decline (which is repeated at the end), and a short slope at about one kilometre in.

I started out too fast. I knew the almost right away. I was struggling, and felt myself slowing down to a more manageable pace. I held this pace for most of the race, but as I approached the Finish Line, I just didn’t have the strength to kick it up a notch. Corinna blew past me at the end (achieving second in her age group!), and I crossed the timing mat a few seconds later.

Ambleside Mile

No PB today. It’s all a difference of seconds in a race like this, and my speed just wasn’t there today. But it was a respectable time, and I know what I need to do to get faster. Train for it!

After the race, I joined the West Van Run Crew for a 5km run along the Seawall to Dundarave and back. Then, I accompanied Corinna and Adam for a run back downtown over Lion’s Gate Bridge.

Ambleside Mile

A beautiful day, and another race in the bag!

Ambleside Mile

Final Results

Chip Time: 6:39
Average Pace: 6:35 min/mile (HA! That’s 4:05 min/km)
Place Overall: 49/109
Age Category Place: 5/8

West Van Run

It was a long time coming – months of anticipation – and finally the big weekend arrived! With three distances, amazing weather, enthusiastic volunteers, and over 1000 participants, the West Van Run was a complete success!

I was honoured when Kirill, the West Van Run race director, asked me to be an ambassador – to become part of  WestVanRunTeam. Thanks to this – and my involvement with WestVanRunCrew – I have made so many new running friends, and experienced races that I wouldn’t otherwise have participated in. My ‘ambassadorship’ included becoming one of the faces of West Van Run, and I found myself on random bulletin boards and in card displays throughout the city:

West Van Run

During one the weekend’s races, someone ran up behind me and shouted: “It’s poster boy Bradley!” Ah, the price of fame.

West Van Run

Here’s how the weekend went down:

Saturday – the 5k

Debra picked me up in the green monster, we gathered Sam at the station, and we all headed to Dundarave Park in West Vancouver. We arrived to one of the most glorious scenes – sunshine, clear skies, views of the ocean and the city. Although Debra was kitted out in style:

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…the rest of us peeled off layers and ended up running in shorts and t-shirts for the most part. This was a stark contrast to West Van Run 2014, which was accompanied by snow and freezing rain.

In previous years, the 5k and 10k were held on the same day, so I hadn’t previously run the shorter distance. In fact, I’ve competed in very few 5k’s before. Perhaps this is the start of a trend?

So while I had nothing to compare it to, this year’s 5k was a new course, which started on Marine Drive – the ‘main street’ of West Vancouver. We gathered excitedly behind the West Van Run arch, raring to go.

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And go we did! A few hills, some twists and turns – 2.5km out, and 2.5km back along the waterfront and West Van seawall. Sunshine! Smiling faces! Cheers from volunteers and spectators! It was all over in a flash.

For me – a flash that turned into a personal best! 23:31 on the clock – a full 16 seconds faster than the Moustache Miler in November! I was not the only one to achieve a PB – many of the West Van Run Crew broke records on this certified course, and celebration ensued!

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We enjoyed our goody bags, cheered for the winners at the awards ceremony, and went out for some well-deserved brunch!

Final Results

Chip Time: 23:31
Average Pace: 4:42 min/km
Place Overall: 64/408
Age Category Place: 10/45

Sunday – the 10k

I woke up sore. Not the same kind of sore as after a major gym workout, or after a half marathon. More of a concentrated sore, focused on my left hip.

The sun was peeking through the clouds when we arrived in Dundarave.

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There was a buzz in the air – more familiar faces, a lot more people, a tingle of excitement. Happy to see a bunch of folks who might not have come to West Van Run if I hadn’t told them about it!

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Unlike Saturday, where I was eager and pumped at the start line, I was lacking the confidence I had before the 5k.

West Van Run

After the gun went off and we headed along Marine Drive, my gait felt a bit lopsided and my hip was bugging me. I tried to stay steady, and focused on not looking at my watch.

Within the first couple of kilometres, the rain started to fall…just lightly, mind you, so it really didn’t matter. At the far side of Park Royal, as we turned around, some supportive and familiar faces who I was really glad to see. Between kilometres 6 and 7 there was an out-and-back…which meant you got to see, first of all, everyone ahead of you. It was actually awesome, because I was cheering on so many of my friends! Saw a few more on my way back.

The toughest part of the course – as I’m sure I’ve said before – is that you can see the finish line about a kilometre before you actually reach it. Longest. Kilometre. Ever.

As I approached, after what seemed like an eternity, I heard the announcer call the 50 minute mark. Not only had I fallen short of my PB (I’ve set a PB at West Van Run the past 2 years), I hit my worst 10k time in 2 years. Now, don’t get me wrong…I know it’s a respectable time. But I couldn’t help feeling let down after the thrill of the previous day.

West Van Run

I got over it.

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Cheers and hugs and rainbows! More friends crossing the finish line!

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Unfortunately, I couldn’t stay for awards since I had been invited to celebrate my friend’s birthday by joining a local brewery tour. Not a shabby way to end the West Van Run weekend!

West Van Run

Final Results

Chip Time: 50:10
Average Pace: 5:01 min/km
Place Overall: 194/606
Age Category Place: 44/81

West Van Run 2016

I want to thank Kirill and Karin, who stick-handled this whole event from start to finish and did an amazing job. Thanks to the volunteers at package pickup and on the course; to the sponsors of the weekend; to Debra for all the awesome photography; and to the amazing and talented runners of the West Van Run Crew – I’m fortunate to have you in my life!

Finally, a big congratulations to the runners who broke course records, who achieved personal bests, who finished the race (or both races!), or who ran their very first race.

See you there next year!

West Van Run

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For the first time, I’m joining the Wild Workout Wednesday Link Up with Annmarie from The Fit Foodie Mama, Angelena Marie from Angelena Marie: Happy, Healthy & Balanced, and Michelle at Fruition Fitness.

The Fit Foodie Mama

Giveaway West Van Run

Looking for a fun local race to prime the running pumps for spring? Want to run your first 5k? Or maybe get in one 10k before the Sun Run? Have a bit of time during the first weekend in March? Then enter my first giveaway of 2016, and join the West Van Run!

The West Van Run is a weekend-long event in 2016:

Saturday, March 5 – 5K race, followed by a (free) 1K Kids Run
Sunday, March 6 – 10K race, which is also followed by a 1K Kids Run!
Theme: RIO 2016! Dress in your most colourful duds!
Location: Dundarave Park, West Vancouver

Wanna learn more about the West Van Run? Read one of my race reports:

There’s a special place in my heart for this run because, in 2014, it was my first ever race report!

West Van Run Team

This year, I have the privilege of representing West Van Run as an ambassador – along with a group of very inspiring, talented, and fun-loving runners! Join me and the West Van Run Team for this awesome race!

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You can also join the West Van Run Crew – fore free, no registration required:

 

Giveaway

Enter for YOUR chance to win an entry to the West Van Run. The winner can use the entry to register for either the 5k OR the 10k! Already registered? Enter to win a free entry for a friend or family member!

Giveaway ends at midnight Pacific time on January 27, 2016. The next price increase is on February  1 – so if you don’t win, you still have time to enter at a reduced price. Open to Canadian & US residents – as long as you’re able to get yourself to West Vancouver, BC for the race! A random winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter.

West Van Run entry giveaway

If you don’t win, don’t fret! You can still save 15% at registration by using the discount code: ‘bradley’

I’m also participating in a Giveaway Roundup hosted (weekly!) by Running with SD Mom and Erica Finds. Click on either link to see what’s on offer. Note to my Canadian readers: many of these Giveaways are, unfortunately, US only. However, they are also sponsored by some great blogs, so be sure to visit!


Giveaway