Following the ever popular Zombie Evasion run from October, race organizers put on the first annual Dead Cold Run in Edmonton on February 22. While the “white walkers” weren’t as delightfully costumed as the autumn zombies, this little race still had a lot of heart…or would that be brains? Mmmm…brains.
Speaking of brains, and brawn, a couple of Edmonton Oilers showed up to participate as well, including team captain, Andrew Ference. The boys gotta do something on the Olympic break!
With just over 150 runners hashing through Rundle Park on this 5K, it was a challenging little trek for me. I seeded myself WAY at the back to avoid the pushing and shoving that occurred during the fall race. (Zombies! Zombies are coming! RUN!!! Insert big ginormous shove from tiny blonde runner behind me….) No worry of that happening this time. Everyone was pretty cool about the undead, and white walkers zipped speedily through the crowd, stripping 99% of us of our life ribbons.
More difficult than I anticipated, the course threw in a couple of hills and a LOT of off-road/off-trail running through ankle-twisting snowy depths. The snow seriously slowed me down and got the heart pumping right off the bat. A fun highlight was a slide down a toboggan hill about half way through the race.
In terms of my own performance, I did walk a wee bit, but often enough it wasn’t because I was dead tired, but because it was really challenging to wade through the snow. I tried to keep moving regardless, and that was kind of the most important thing for me: keep moving! I had some terrific snot bubbles on this run, and I was sure to wipe off the frozen snot cat whiskers that crept across my face as I ran… yes, it was cold. Only -18 C but with the wind chill, upwards of -26 C. The smoke (exhaust? death chemicals?) from the plant across the river kept blocking out the sun. Brrr.
My overall time was 45:23 with an average 9:05 pace. Right now I don’t have a lot to compare that to… I’ve only just started being aware of times. (Previous goals in races were all about finishing alive.) I think as I’m trying to improve my running skills and times, I might lay off the “fun” runs and concentrate on flat out road or trail races. As well, these fun ones aren’t any cheaper! Already the Zombie Evasion for next fall is $50-60 and Color Me Rad is $40-50 as well. I dunno. We’ll see.
Overall, it was a good time. It ended back at the Rundle Family Centre with plenty of hot soup, fruit and muffins/cookies. Hot chocolate was drained by the time I got there, but when you come in 123 out of 159 runners, that’s bound to be the case. Lesson learned: want the good snacks? Run faster.