I may have accidentally stumbled upon what is by far the sweetest race in all Toronto. Picture the Amazing Race. The adrenaline, the checkpoints, the challenges. Now bring all that hype to Toronto and donate all the money raised to a charity whose mission it is to to “provide a safe, supportive place where children and youth can experience new opportunities, overcome barriers, build positive relationships and develop confidence and skills for life.” Welcome to the Capital One Race for Kids.
Short, Blonde, Bearded and sort of German
The weather was perfect as we rolled into the square at Yonge and Dundas. The sun was shining and there was a light breeze sweeping over
race participants as they entered from every corner of Toronto. Most were wearing the bright red Capital One Race for Kids T-Shirts we’d been given as part of our race-kit. Others, like us, had customized their uniforms and showed up in neon jumpsuits, corporate swag and serious looking sports attire we weren’t 100% prepared for.
As 60+ teams gathered together in the square, we started to get the sense that this was a bigger deal than we’d anticipated. We’d signed up months ago at the recommendation of a friend and nearly had to back out because of injuries, babysitting trauma and other complications that would have made it way easier just to stay at home and work on our tan. Thankfully, last minute, we’d managed to get our act together and show up on time at the start line. The Short, Blonde, Bearded Germans had arrived.
After mixing and mingling with the race organizers, and posing for a few pictures for tourists, we were welcomed to the main event by a kids dance group who rocked the stage and a warm up led by a fitness guru who sent a number of the men skipping their way straight to the sidelines. Upon receiving a detailed break down of the rules, which included the ability to use public transit, and allowing the corporate fundraisers a 5 minute head-start (darn you!), we were off. Continue reading “Short, Blonde, Bearded Germans Tackle the Capital One Race for Kids”→
It comes as no surprise that my favourite way to see a city is to get up at the crack of dawn and give it the runaround. There’s simply nothing quite like waking up alongside a city; whether it’s skirting around delivery vans dropping off fresh baked goods for the start of day, or darting businessmen and women hustling to get to work on time, taking an early-morning run while traveling is by far my favourite way to discover a city. You never know what you’ll see before the sun creeps up! Rising early to hit the pavement has led me to discover a Canadian cemetery in the North of Wales, and accidentally join a 5km while spending an anniversary weekend in Pittsburgh and been yelled at by a fellow hostel guest in Geneva who must have dreamed her alarm went off and blamed it on the early risers, or, I suppose I should say runners.
While I’ve had my fair share of fabulous runs to kick-start my travels around the world, here are my top 5! If you’re ever in the area, don’t miss out on the chance to take in the fresh air, the beautiful landscape and hit the ground running:
1. Stanley Park, Vancouver, B.C
Starting at Canada Place and ending at English Bay, the approximately 12 kilometer run through Stanley Park is the most amazing and memorable runs I have done to date (the fact that I ran it alongside one of my best friends was totally just the icing on the cake). Next to cyclists, joggers and walkers galore, you’ll weave in-between greenery set directly net to a never-ending coast-line in one of the most beautiful parks in the world. Check out more about Stanley Park and other things to see an do in Vancouver in my blog series on Beautiful British Columbia.
So, I figure since I’ve started running a bunch of different races in a bunch of different places, I might as well start doing a small write-up post-race so fellow runners and followers of this energetic giraffe, can get a feel for runs that are worth it, and runs that can definitely be skipped. I’ll have to write a few retrospectively, but to kick things off, here is a short review of the Oasis Zoo Run 2014!
From all the runs held in and around Toronto, this was the one I had always regretted not running. So, earlier this year, as I mapped out my post-baby “get your butt back into shape” plan, I signed myself up. I’d signed up for the 10km but an unprecedented ankle injury left me with aches and pains leading up to race day, so I sucked up my pride and made the switch. Having had to back out of the Toronto Yonge Street 10km already this season due to a nasty cold, I was pretty bummed but still stoked to hit the pavement feet first. Continue reading “Race review: The Oasis Zoo Run 2014”→