The Canada Army Run is finally here! On Sunday, runners will compete in the 5Km and Half Marathon distances in support of our country’s armed forces. I have run this race every year since 2010, including running the half marathon last year. This year the plan was to run the half, but training and my schedule did not click, so I went back to the 5K, a race I am more confident in and enjoy training for a bit more.
Last year I wrote about some tips if you are joining in on Sunday. Those tips are still useful, so click the link to read about some tips if this is your first Army Run.
For this week’s Three Things Thursday, I have included three more tips!
If you are going to be at the Army Run on Sunday – come by and say hi! I will most likely be hanging out near the Laurier Bridge. If you see me on the course, yell at me – it makes me run faster 🙂
Three Things Thursday – Army Run Tips Edition
Tip #1 – Respect Corral System
When you sign up for the larger races, you are asked to select an approximate finish time. The reason they do this is to sort runners at the start line from Fastest to slowest. This ensures that those who want to move fast, are able to without being stopped by people who just need a bit longer to finish their race. For the Army Run, I am in the 25-30minute corral which is the 2nd corral. So that means I will line up kind of near the front, but not super close. During last years half-marathon, my friends and I lined up close to the back because we knew we would take 2.5 hrs to cross. In an ideal running world I should be surrounded by people who run at the same pace as me. BUT – every time I run a large race downtown, I have to run around people who are walking (and not 4K in, like the first 500m there is always someone walking). Therefore all this running around results in a fast runner, running a greater than 5K distance. During the Ottawa Marathon 5K, I approaced 5K on my garmin way before the finish. Looking at the map, the first KM was all over the place. Please, Please, Please, go in the corral that you are assigned, especially if you plan on walking. UNLESS you are part of the injured soldiers group (who have a head start)
Tip #2 – Be prepared for no bagels
Last year, the Army Run event staff had neat little recovery boxes filled with water powder, hummus, crackers, an energy bar and chocolate (YUM). There were no bagels! I’m not sure of the 5K food (anyone??), but at the Ottawa Race Weekend there were no bagels either – just yoghurt (ugh NEVER) and fruit leathers. I was not happy. So – be prepared, if you need your carbs like I do after a race, pack a bagel in your bag!
Tip #3 – Applaud/Thank any injured Armed Forces member you see
As mentioned, there is a head start for members of the armed forces who have been injured while on duty. They were injured while serving for our country – many have lost limbs, some have lost much much more. If you run past an injured soldier, please cheer them on/applaud/give some form of encouragement and thanks.