Monday, May 31, 2010

Marathon Mom, 2010 National Champion

New June 3rd: interview and article with Canadian Running.

Eric Liddell
: I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure.

Well, I implemented the plan this weekend at the Canadian Championships at the Ottawa Marathon ... and I couldn't be happier!

1st Canadian.
6th Overall.
Personal Best time 2:39:07.

I had an easy 2 weeks to taper (and get rid of a cold) with my last easy run of 5 km Friday before we headed out. Jonathan did all the driving (he's so super) so I was able to relax, eat/hydrate, and entertain the boys. We had a decent ride, and a great dinner with Joy and Darrin, Lorna and Greg and kids. On Saturday I took it easy after the technical meeting (Seth and I had naps at the hotel while Micah and Jonathan enjoyed an Amphibious ride) and continued to enjoy my (blah) diet of plain pasta, plain bagels, water and eload. I didn't sleep that great at the hotel either night but when you're a mom w/ young kids, this doesn't phase you.
The morning of the race I said goodbye to my men and walked to the start (1.5 km). Did a short (1 km) warm-up, including a few pick ups, stretched, used the washroom and had few sips of water. Then, I relaxed until the 7:00 a.m. start.
I had a pacer, which was great (thanks Ryan!). He pointed to every pothole, railway, and rough spot on the road, and offered to carry my bottles while keeping me on pace for a perfect 1:18:33 half split. He even ran a few extra km, which was very kind, considering he had a big upcoming race of his own! Then, things got a bit dull; I didn't have the luxury of my pacer, there were a few less spectators, and a rather long and somewhat windy stretch. I am not going to make excuses for allowing myself to slip a bit but I must say that I think I run at my best when I am side-by-side with a pacer or with a few other ladies (for some healthy competition).
I had my A and B goal times (2:37 and 2:39 respectively) in mind but knew the 2:37 wasn't looking as possible. I ran with a few men for a good distance then saw Mary Davies around 38 km. We ran together for a bit (unfortunately she didn't have a great race) then I moved ahead with about 2 km to go. I can't say that a whole lot went through my head. It wasn't terribly difficult but I knew I could have been feeling a bit worse had I been pushing a bit more. It's hard to describe. I can't say I have any regrets because I would likely run the same race all over again. If only I had my pacer and fans in the 2nd half. Anyway, I finished happy and strong with my arms in the air and a smile on my face. Boy, what a feeling to see the clock at 2:39, break the ribbon, and be handed a Canadian flag with media flashing their cameras. Coach Nicole gave me a huge cheer and hug before I headed to Jonathan, Micah and Seth, and the media. I enjoyed sharing my experience with them (video and articles below) then headed with my escort to give my blood and urine samples for drug testing. Fortunately I had no problems this time! The awards were at noon. It was pretty special, being up on that podium.
After another interview and a few pictures, we headed back to the hotel. It was nice to walk with Jonathan (and the boys who fell asleep in the Chariot) then enjoy a relaxing bubbly hot tub back at the hotel. We checked out around 3pm then I got my post-race mocha. Later that evening we enjoyed an amazing dinner with Kevin and Amy and kids.
During the ride home I thought about a lot, and how blessed I am. Of course, after a while, I started writing things down. Every marathon runner always plans their next race, short after finishing! But, it is time for a well-deserved break. Four marathons in 13 months means taking it easy for a while ... and enjoying this title of, "National Marathon Champion" !!
Thank you .... all of you, for your support, notes of encouragement, prayers, emails, and good wishes. It's 11:17 pm now and I must say, I am ready to sleep. The laundry can wait until tomorrow. After all, I should have a bit more time on my hands!

National Marathon Champion 2010 ... How Sweet It Is!

Click here for a video clip from the National Championship at the Ottawa Marathon!

Jonathan, Micah, Seth and I just got home from our Ottawa weekend. I have A LOT of laundry to do but am going to take all of this in, while I can. I have over 100 emails to read but wanted to do a quick blog. My sister sent this article to me, below.
Will give you the race report tonight.


Just behind Mohammed (1st female overall), finishing 6th female overall and first Canadian female, Krista Duchene of Brantford crossed the finish line at 2:39:08.

Sporting a yellow ribbon for her deceased parents and friend currently battling Cancer, DuChene gushed about her family, faith, and love of running.

"God has given me this gift," DuChene said, while hugging her husband and two sons, ages 2 and 4. "It's about setting a goal and going for it."

OTTAWA — For a full-time mother of two boys under five, a part-time worker outside the home and committed runner, Krista DuChene of Brantford, Ont., runs a mean marathon.

However, after placing sixth overall in the women’s division of the 36th Ottawa Marathon on Sunday and winning the female title at the Athletics Canada national championships, DuChene says it’s time for a break.

Competing under ideal weather conditions, with overcast skies and cool temperatures, DuChene, 33, finished her fourth marathon in the past 13 months in two hours 39 minutes 7.3 seconds. It wasn’t a personal-best time, but she earned her first national title.

“I can’t believe that I can say that,” DuChene, the mother of Micah, 4, and Seth, 2, said about her national title.

She told most people who asked that she was striving for a time of 2:40 in Ottawa, but secretly wanted 2:37.

“I intentionally came in with a few goals: Top 10, top Canadian and a personal-best time,” DuChene said. “It didn’t go exactly, but I’ve had four marathons in the last 13 months.

“I need a break.”

DuChene was a runner in high school, but put it aside in favour of women’s hockey while a student at the University of Guelph. Following university, she ran three marathons before delivering her two children and four marathons since their birth.

“I feel like I’m just starting running,” she said.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Running the Race

Isaiah 40:28-31

28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.

29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;

31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Well, this will be my last blog post until my return from the National Marathon Championships in Ottawa, May 30th (also, see Athletics Canada and the Elite Start List). The above verse (likely one you've heard before) can be applied to our lives in many ways. Obviously I've highlighted the "run and not grow weary" part so that I can keep it in my mind while running 42.2 km on Sunday.
I must say that the last two weeks have been different. For my fellow marathoners, I know you understand. Decreasing mileage and intensity for 2 weeks is something that doesn't go unnoticed by the mind or body. But, it has been good. I've been able to rest (easy to do w/ all of the finales on tv!), recover from a nasty cold (first one in ages!), spend even more quality time with my family (Seth, our 2 yr old is really talking a lot now... in full-out sentences! Micah, our 4 yr old is preparing for JK, and asking a lot about what is real vs pretend), speak to a few community groups, and prepare for this big race. Let me tell you, I AM READY!
Tomorrow we'll pack the van and head out with lots of toys, books, music (and Adventures in Odyssey for the kids), snacks (for the boys), water and bagels (for me!). We are going to meet up with Team Saucony for dinner Friday night and see some of the city (hopefully the Changing of the Guards) before the race.

Many of you ask me what I think about when I race. Well, let me just say that thinking is very different when racing vs training. I talk a lot w/ my friends when I train but when I run, it's business (just ask James ... when he paced me in Hamilton, he once asked if I wanted water at a station. Apparently I replied quite abruptly, "no, sloshing" as I pointed to my stomach!).
Since running faster, I must say I have less time to think! I am very aware of my pace (Nicole calls me "Steady Eddie"!), eload gel and sports drink consumption, and km markings. I can't say that I get too bothered by those around me as I focus on MY race.
Here's what I've been thinking as I go into this race. I will likely ponder some of these thoughts Sunday, once I get into a steady pace:

- my mom locking me out of the house (because of my high energy) to run laps around our farm before being allowed back in (yes, I've already done this with Micah in the back yard!)
- my dad's great interest and support in my sports activities - and that too of my siblings'
- the strength God gave me as I watched my parents' bodies weaken to cancer but see their faith like never before. Knowing I'm running for them, and my friend (t).
- how much I love running and feel like I just started (thanks to a 4 year break to play hockey at U of G )
- the balance of training, working, family life, and other activities (I completed the training time to implement race plan!)
- my super husband as he loves our boys tremendously, and serves so diligently in so many ways (e.g. he cuts the lawn w/ our 2 yr old riding along in a backpack)
- Coach Nicole's expertise in taking me, "Marathon Mom" to the next level, after winning my first marathon back since having kids, on Mother's Day
- a chocolate and peanut ice cream bar waiting for me in my freezer at home
- my healthy and injury-free body that in this season, completed PR's in every race, and an average of running 97 km/wk, swimming 4 km/wk and cycling 30 min/wk
- future dreams of: more Chariot runs w/ additional kids, faster marathons, missions trips (I would love to care for babies in an orphanage)

Let me say, there certainly has been joy in this pursuit. As my sister said, "Kris - Remember that God "works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will" (Ephesians 1:11) and then, no matter what happens, you can have peace and a sense of purpose. He's given you your talents and you're using the gifts He's given you.
As Eric Liddell said, "God made me fast. And when I run, I feel His pleasure"
I'm SO proud of the steward that you are!" "

Signing out....

1 Corinth. 9:24 You know that in a race all the runners run but only one wins the prize, don't you? You must run in such a way that you may be victorious

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

t t t t t t t t t t t t t t t t t t

Canadian Marathon Championships this weekend in Ottawa. I'll be wearing the yellow Canadian Cancer Society ribbon to remember my parents and to support my friend, Theresa (aka "Tee"). I'll also have a "t" (for "Tee" and the cross) written on myself and on my bottles. My men (Jonathan, Micah and Seth) will be cheering me on. Training started in December. Time to race...I am r e a d y ! Hoping to go under 2:40!!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Paris Runner's Den 1st Annual Phlox Run

June 6, 2010 is the date of the Paris Runner's Den Phlox Run. Read below for more info. See you there!

Runner's Den, Paris 1st Annual "Phlox Run" 10k and 25k Trail Run

The panoramic vistas high above the pastoral Grand River valley are just one of the highlights you'll enjoy as you cross
the pedestrian bridge near the start and finish of the 10km and 25 km races. Walkers are also welcome for a 10k walk. The
riverside trail meaders through beautiful Carolinian woods carpeted by purple phox, and both courses include interesting
topography that will challenge and delight all running enthusiasts.

Organized by the Paris Runner’s Den, both the 10km and the 25km race, as well as the 10K walk, start and finish at Brant Conservation Area, connecting sections of the Brantford Rail Trail with the Grand Valley Trail.

In addition to celebrating the 10th anniversary of the Paris Runner’s Den, we also hope to promote health and fitness in our community, raise awareness to the trails, and to use some of the proceeds of the race for trail funding. It will be a professionally-facilitated run that will be challenging, but fun, and will include chip timing, prizes, food and beverages.

Count yourself as part of this historic inaugural event as we reach out to runners from our area and abroad.

Speaking to a Crowd

This morning I had the privilege of being the guest speaker at the Volunteer Appreciation Breakfast for Brant's Food 4 Thought Breakfast Program. In speaking about my life as Marathon Mom, I spoke about: my background, setting dreams and making them reality, and who I am as a Christian, Wife, Mom, Dietitian, Runner, and Friend. Scroll down below to see a list of my favourite books/magazines if you want to know a bit more about me.

Nine Days To Go!

Only 9 days until the big race. I am feeling great and enjoying the extra rest during my tapering. Here's a picture of me in Vancouver, a few weeks ago. Can't wait to race again! We are looking forward to taking the boys with us on this trip. Should be fun.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Two Weeks To Go for the Canadian Marathon Championships in Ottawa, May 30/2010

Well folks, only two more weeks to go until the BIG marathon. Every workout and race this 2010 season has been designed for a personal best time in Ottawa, May 30th at the Canadian Marathon Championships! I am going to be brave and tell you my goal time: less than 2:40!!
I completed my last hard run Wednesday, which was 22 miles on the treadmill (17 of the 22 miles at goal race pace of 10 mph). It was a bit challenging, as I hoped, but felt great when I got off and thought...I AM READY for Ottawa! Thursday was a steady 2.25 km swim and 10 mile run at 9.9 mph, and today was 45 minutes on my rollers (road bike). Tomorrow is to be a steady shorter long run. Then, 2 weeks to stay sharp and healthy! Here I come!
On another note...
As many of you know, I lost my parents to cancer in 1995 and 1997. Just recently, we've received the sad news that a very dear friend's cancer has returned. We are so saddened by this but continue rely on God for his love and strength. So, I am dedicating May 30th to this friend. She is a super person who loves the Lord, and I am so glad I can run for her.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Vancouver BMO 1/2 Marathon. May 2, 2010.

Check out today's results on Global News BC. Go to this link, and click on full news hour Sun. May 2nd. Scroll forward to about 27 minutes, it’s shortly after!

Vancouver. Amazing.

The B Family giving the thumbs up to a super day! This family really gave us the true experience of "North Van". Amazing food (much of it organic and super healthy), views, and catching up on things made for a very special day. One to remember for a long time. We hope to return w/ our boys soon!
Jonathan and Darko enjoyed their time together talking about bikes, chick peas and tuna, spicy soup, and many other memories.

Pretty in pink. Stacey took me to her favourite store, Lu Lu Lemon. While we were there, a few others were celebrating their 1/2 marathon finish so Stacey happily informed them of my win, which impressed them so much that they gave me my new Lu Lu Lemon hoodie! Jenn W. and Cathy Z. will be so proud! Thanks, LLL and Stacey!

Jonathan and Isabella get to know each other while doing a puzzle together.

Vancouver. Amazing.

View from our hotel room. Stunning.
Lovely looking.

Check out those clouds!

Vancouver. Amazing.

Stacey and Jonathan enjoying the beautiful scenery.
What a moment we had at the Olympic cauldron.

A friend and fellow athlete of coach Nicole Stevenson was to run the marathon today but had to stay in Ontario due to injury. This one is for you, Jennifer Eberman.

Accepting the trophy for 1st woman at the BMO 1/2 Marathon.

Hanging out at the Saucony booth with Stacey.

Vancouver. Amazing.

Crossing through the tape. First female in 1:16:37.
Arms raised!

The finishing kick.

Go, Saucony!

Flying through.

Vancouver. Amazing.

The start. Check out our fancy and bright Saucony racing singlets. They are hard to miss (especially on our tall poster boy, David Jackson in the front row on the left!).
Silent scenic stretching.

Bike escorts - thanks for your efforts!

Being a goof in the hotel room, morning of the race. Despite the surprise guest we had at 1:00 a.m. (a mouse!), it was great to stay at a hotel so near to the start. I was able to go back to the hotel to shower and check out before the awards.

Vancouver. Amazing.

The elite Q and A session at the expo. Taking a turn answering questions about life as a runner.
John Stanton (Running Room) giving tips to first-time marathoners.

Brian Torrance introducing guest speakers, organizing the elites, and the race (and much more). Thanks for taking such great care of us. This was a very well-organized race.

George - super volunteer. He really went the extra mile (pardon the pun!) by picking us up at the airport, calling us to check in, inviting us to dinner, etc. Thanks, George!

Saturday, May 1, 2010

East to West. Montreal to Vancouver.

Two weeks ago, Jonathan and I had a great weekend away for me to run in the Cdn 1/2 Marathon Championships in Montreal. Now, we are in Vancouver for me to run in the BMO 1/2 Marathon. Last night we had a lovely dinner in Yaletown with Team Saucony. This afternoon we'll be at the expo for the elite reception, packet pick-up, Saucony booth, and elite Q&A's. We'll likely eat an early dinner and relax for the evening. I am really looking forward to tomorrow - running at 7am then spending the day w/ my close friend, Stacey (and her hubby and daughter). She moved out here 5 years ago and I haven't seen her since. She works with the Canadian Cancer Society, which is near and dear to my heart, having lost both of my parents to cancer (my dad to colon cancer in 1995 and my mom to leukemia in 1997). My family of 8 took a trip to Vancouver, many years ago, and this is my first time back since then. One of my brothers, Kevin (who has an amazing memory) could remember many details about this special trip. As I sit and relax in the hotel, blogging this entry and reading my brother's memories while looking out the window at the city with the mountains behind, I feel blessed and so much peace.

Signing off until tomorrow....Krista, "Marathom Mom".