Running the Sport at 5 Peaks Albion Hills. But first: Covid!
July 16th: 5 Peaks Albion Hills in Caledon
So it finally caught me. Two years of avoiding Covid, including when my wife had it last month, it finally caught up with me – I think after a boozy get together with friends at the beginning of the month (I wasn’t the only one to come down with it).
It wasn’t horribly nasty, but it wasn’t pleasant either. Basically 1 week in bed, followed by a week not in bed but feeling pretty lousy. Weirdly the third week, while I felt better I kept falling asleep every few hours. I’d sit my desk and do a couple of hours of work, then have to lie down for an hour or two. This was new, the week prior wasn’t like that.
After that the symptoms pretty much subsided, though I found my stamina took a hit for a few more weeks.
Very glad to have been vaccinated, covid being wierd with “unpredictable severity”. I wasn’t too worried about getting it, but I’ve had pneumonia a couple of times, so …
Anyway: I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to run, but luckily tested negative the day before the race. The first thing I did was put on my running shoes and head out for a run. I wanted to see if after 2 weeks of covid and inactivity I had the legs and the lungs to run.
I ran 4k at a reasonable pace and felt pretty good. Good to go!
3K Kids Race
I arrived early to see the 3K kids race. The youngest member of our team was running one of her first races; it was so much fun to watch and it looked like she had a pretty good time, with a little assist from Mommy.
Then came time for our race.
The race starts with an uphill climb before levelling out for a bit. It is the hilliest of the 5 Peaks courses I’ve run with a pretty robust climb around km 5 or 6.
I’ve run this course 2 times before: in 2019 and then last year it was the first in person race once things started opening up again.
In 2019 I was signed up for the Enduro, which is around 14K, but it turned out being one of the hottest days of the year and I opted to scale down to the Sport – about 7k – as did about half of the participants. We were drenched in sweat before the race even started.
Last year I ran the Enduro; it’s two laps of the 7k course. My time was good on the first lap, slowed down quite a bit on the second though.
This year I was also registered for the Enduro, but having just got over covid scaled back to the Sport.
I huffed and puffed my way up that first clime and made it about 4.5k before I had to stop and rest, then I walked for a bit. I was running out of gass and my heart rate had been north of 160bpm since about the 1.5km mark – this is unusual, its usually more of a steady climb.
That robust hill I mentioned early came up as I was walking. It comes up by surprise as you round a corner: it was kind of funny to hear all of the groans as runners come around the corner and see what lies ahead.
After walking for about a km I ran out the rest of the race. It’s a beautiful course really and not too technical, with the real challenge being the hilly bits.