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Hello! I have not posted in a long time, but that doesn’t mean that I have not been running. The truth is that I spend my days working on a computer and my evenings and weekends are spent either running or being with my family, or both. So, I have not had the motivation to update my blog. But, I am feeling reinvigorated. So, let’s get up to date! I am not going writing full race reviews in this recap, but I will going forward.

Feb 18, 2018 – Hypothermic Half, Edmonton, AB

This was my 4th year running the Hypothermic Half in Edmonton. It is the same course every year and Justin always organizes a fun event. This year the swag consisted of a toque and a backpack. This was the third year in a row of getting a new backpack and I still have them all and they are in great shape. They always give away high quality gear from the Running Room. The brunch after the race continues to be the best post race meal going. I set my best Hypo Half time in 2017, and 2018, was my second best year at this race. I track my Hypo Personal Best separate from a regular Half Personal Best because the course conditions here are much different running on ice and snow. I will be back in 2019, and am looking forward to it!

May 12, 2018 – Gorilla Run, Edmonton, AB

This was my first year doing the Gorilla Run. I did it as a fun run with the kids. A lot of people wore Gorilla suits, which were sold optionally as part of the race registration, but we did not. I would say that the percentage of racers dressed up to those that were not was about 50-50. If you are thinking of not doing the race because you don’t want to pay the price for the suit, I say don’t worry about it, go ahead and sign up. The kids had fun looking at all the different costumes and we were still able to support a great cause without having to break the bank. My youngest daughter ran the 1K and I did the 5K with my eldest daughter.

May 20, 2018 – Woody’s RV World Marathon, Red Deer, AB

This was my 3rd year running the Half Marathon at Woody’s. It was also my fastest year and the first time that it did not rain. The course is great and has plenty of natural shade along the tree lined paths. We will continue to come back year after year to this race. My wife ran the 10K and the kids did the 1K. It is a big event and lacks the personal touch of smaller events, but runners are looked after very well with plenty of food at the finish and lots of stations and support on course. This was the 20th year anniversary of this race and the biggest medals yet. The medals are designed by a local artist and depict part of the race route. This year was a rendering of Bower Ponds. See you next year Red Deer!

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May 30, 2018 – Edmonton Corporate Challenge Road Race

Corporate Challenge is an event put on for companies where staff members get to bond outside of work and play games and have fun while competing against other companies. This was my third year taking part in the Road Race event and my first year getting a medal. Each company sends 6 runners; 3 in a 5K and 3 in a 8K. The total finishing placement of all 6 runners is added up and the company with the lowest number wins. I ran in the 5K. It is strange to be part of a running team to me because running is such a personal experience and I didn’t want to be the cause of us not winning, so I pushed extra hard. Turns out it was great motivation because we won Gold! It was so fun. I have never won first place before. I guess it helps to tag along with a bunch of awesome runners!

June 16, 2018 – Canadian River Valley Revenge Ultra, Edmonton, AB

As always, the RVR is a special race. I did the 50K in January and survived, so I thought, why not try it again in June. I was planning this race as a personal test for me. If I was able to finish strong, then I would know that I was ready to try the 50 miler next year. Well, I am not ready for the 50 miler. The course was incredible. I loved the new single loop course, but it kicked my butt. Todd, the course designer, had us climbing down ridges and through brush and constantly changing elevation. This course is rough and I had a few moments where I questioned myself and why I was doing this to myself. I finished more than an hour earlier than I had on the winter course, but I felt far weaker at the end. If you truly want to see what you are made of, then I will see you here next year. I may have got knocked down by this race but I am getting right back up and plan to work hard and finish the 50K next year feeling strong.

Aug 19, 2018 – Edmonton Marathon

This was my 3rd year running the Half Marathon at the Edmonton Marathon. As always, the course is flat and many people set personal bests here. I have always been under 2 hours for this race, which is always one of my goals. It is good to set a series of goals for each race. Here are my normal goals: 1st goal – Finish healthy. 2nd goal – Finish under 2 hours for the half. 3rd goal – set a new personal best for this course. 4th goal – set a new half marathon personal best. Everyone’s goals are personal to them but we should all have the same first goal. Other great goals are things like: give 25 high fives to strangers, say thank you to 20 volunteers, or tell 10 people they are looking great as you pass them. I set my personal best half at sea level in Vancouver in 2016, and I have not been able to beat it yet. But, if I am ever going to do it in Alberta, it will probably be at the Edmonton Marathon. I have run 22 half marathons to date and my 2nd and 4th fastest ever were at the Edmonton Marathon in 2016 and 2018.

Side note: While reviewing my spreadsheet of race results, I also noticed that my first 5 half marathons are all in the bottom 6 for my slowest times. What does this mean? Don’t get discouraged. You can always get better. You can always work harder. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. If races were only run by people thinking that they could win, then the Edmonton Marathon would only have 10 competitors each year. Finishing any race that causes you to push yourself to new personal heights is always an accomplishment worth celebrating. This is why the medals mean so much to me. Each medal on my wall symbolizes the effort that went into achieving it.

So long for now. Next up is my race review from Bill’s Trail Run.