Friday, July 18, 2014

Scotiabank 5K - Team Alzheimer's

I'm very proud to have been part of "Team Alzheimer's" for the Vancouver Scotiabank Half and 5K on Sunday June 22nd.

Not only was this a scenic 5K to run, but I was running as part of Team Alzheimer's, in memory of my grandfather who passed away from the disease and to raise funds for the Alzheimer Society of B.C. which offers much needed support services to people with Alzheimer's disease and other dementia's, their caregivers and their families.  If you or someone you know needs assistance due to Alzheimer's Disease, please contact your local Alzheimer Society.  In BC the website is

Race in support bib on my back
 It was an early morning for Gary and I on a beautiful morning.  We were up and out the door around 7am, a quick stop at Tim Horton's and we were off to Vancouver.   I knew that the 5K race had sold out so there were going to be roughly 2500 runners doing the 5K with me and after the great experience with a big race in May, I had high hopes for this one.  Unfortunately it really wasn't all that organized.  There wasn't a lot of communication prior to the race, an occasional email but nothing like the details I received for the other race.  The one thing that was made clear was that parking at the starting line was next to non existent and we were to park in Stanley park and take one of the shuttles to the start line.

After parking there were a lot of people milling around looking for information.  There weren't any volunteers anywhere in the area and after waiting quite a while for a shuttle, we decided to walk to the start line as it was starting to get  a little too close to the start time for my liking.  After walking almost 20 minutes we finally saw the first volunteer who looked to be giving directions.  I asked him where the 5 K start line was and he told me he didn't really know but if I followed the sound of the music, I would probably find it.  Not exactly the most helpful information but eventually we did indeed locate the Charity Village where I checked in with Team Alzheimer's and made my way over to the start line.

We were supposed to be in corral's, based on our estimated finish times, but there were no corral's.  I lined up somewhere towards the middle of the sea of people and hoped that I wouldn't be in people's way.  As it turned out I shouldn't have been worried about that as I kept bobbing and weaving around people.  That was a pretty good feeling.

The 5K course itself was very pretty and scenic, it was based mostly on trails through Stanley Park, out along part of the seawall, and then we wrapped around a corner, up a hill and joined in with the half marathoner's for the last kilometer of the race.
Garmin showing the route

It felt great to be a part of a team, and see the group of volunteers from the Alzheimer Society cheering the runners on.  I saw my wonderful husband just before I crossed the finish line and then I was in the finishers chute where there were a few more Alzheimer Society Volunteers.  My co-worker was there as well and took a great photo for me with my finisher's medal.
In the finishers chute with my medal

I headed back over to the Charity Village where Team Alzheimer was to meet after the race for a team photo.  Again, it was so great to be a part of a team.  This was the first time that I've done a race as part of a team and it was great.
Team Alzheimer's
After we took the team picture ( the team actually had about 70 members so not everyone was present for the picture), my wonderful husband and I started back to the car.  We still had no idea where the shuttles were so we walked along lost lagoon and the rose garden back to the car before heading home.

Oh yeah!  I also had my best official race time for a 5K yet!  Yeah!  Here is the link to my garmin,   I was 785/1211 and finished 83/121 in my age group.  A huge improvement to a year ago when I was mostly walking the races. Here is the link to the official race results:

I won't be ordering any pictures from this race, but it's neat to see the video of me crossing the finish line in the middle of the pack instead of the back.
And the link to the photo's.