North Van Run 10K 2019

north van run

After returning from nearly two weeks in Europe, I honestly wasn’t feeling in the mood to tackle a race. Sure, I did a bit of running while travelling, but let’s be honest – those were runs combined with sightseeing and photo ops: hardly what could be considered training! On top of it all – jetlag!

Photo Credit: Bee Vee

But I knew a whole bunch of people running this year’s North Van Run and heck, I live in North Van! So Sunday morning, it was off to the races!


A lot of my friends were running the North Van Run 5K, so we arrived early to get sorted. Susan had kindly picked up our bibs, so it was just a matter of getting them pinned on. It was particularly chilly but at least it was dry! We got an awesome group photo (thanks, Dave!) of a whole bunch of us before the race!

I’m particularly chuffed that Simita and her hubby were running because I had hyped up the race – and her 6-year-old was doing his first race ever! He was meant to run just the kids 1K, but ended up joining Mom and Dad in the 5K as well – nice work!!

After cheering everyone on at the start of the 5K, I dropped my bag at gear check and did a very brief warmup. Did I mention I wasn’t really feeling it? But I grabbed photos with a few more familiar faces, and tried to get myself into game mode.

In the starting chute, I chatted a bit with May Lee (good luck in Chicago!!) – neither of us was particularly inclined to ‘race’, although the fact she has a marathon in two weeks gives her a better excuse than I had!!

On the Course

I’ve run the North Van Run 5K twice before – at the inaugural race in 2017 and again last year. But this year I had decided to run the 10K.

Part of the reason for this is CityStrides – something I’ve been doing since moving to North Van last summer. It tracks every street you run in the city, and I’m working towards my goal of finishing the City of North Vancouver. Currently, I stand at 86%*. One of the roads I needed to finish is Low Level Road – but since it has no sidewalk or running path, it’s really only ‘available’ when closed for the North Van Run. So there it is!

(*As of October 6, this is up to 90%!)

Pleasantly distracted by my chat with May Lee, we almost missed the countdown to the start! We were wedged between the 40 minute and 50 minute pacers, and my vague goal was somewhere in between (though definitely closer to 50 minutes). I went out too fast, caught up in the excitement of the crowd.

The course was familiar – along the Spirit Trail through Squamish First Nations land, around the Auto Mall, over the rail bridge (always a challenge), another uphill along Third Ave. (an additional challenge), and back down to Esplanade. By this point, the 50-minute pacer had overtaken me.

While the 5K heads back to the Shipyards at this point, the 10K continues out along Esplanade to Low Level Road (my CityStrides target!), and then back again. As we turned around, and with just over 2K to go, I pushed to get ahead of the pacer and stay with the pack ahead of me.

Reaching the Shipyards and turning onto the Burrard Dry Dock Pier is such an inspiring experience – heaps of people cheering, and the amazing views of the Vancouver skyline across the Burrard Inlet. Very happily, the North Van Run posts free race photos on Facebook!

north van run
Photo Credit: Jan Heuninck


Done! Turns out that jetlag is good for me, as I managed to achieve my fastest 10K race since 2015, and my third best time ever! Thrilled with my results today!

At Shipyards Commons, we were treated to cookies, juice, bananas (a wee bit on the green side), baked goods and – always a personal favourite – chips!

Then, off for a celebratory coffee with friends and cheers to another successful North Van Run!

north van run

Final Results

Chip Time: 48:07
Place Overall: 81/404
Gender Place: 61/194
Place in Age Category (40-49): 11/50

For full race results, click here

north van run
Photo Credit: Jan Heuninck

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