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Isle-aux-Coudres – Race Recap

Last year, Alexa broke her leg and as such, our July summer vacation degenerated. We decided then to take a long weekend a few weeks later to make up for it and go to Charlevoix, and chose Isle-Aux-Coudres as our specific destination. We fell in love with this peaceful place along with the family oriented hotel we stayed at (Cap-Aux-Pierres). The latter includes two pools, a park/play area, a mini-putt, recreation rooms and nighttime roasting marshmallows. The kids adored their experience. When we later saw that there was a race on Iles-Aux-Coudres, we decided to book our 2014 summer vacation around that event and return to this destination.

We registered the girls for the kids’ 1km race. Guillaume went right for the entire island circuit, which totalled 23.5km, and I chose the 10km distance. Sabrina’s interest in races is well established, but on the eve of the race, Alexa told me she was very excited for the next day which was wonderful to hear.

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It turned out to be a sunny, hot day which is a switch from the regular rainy chilly race days I’ve grown accustomed to. First up was the kids’ races. Both kids insisted on running alone. However, as I observed them it became evident that just about all other participants (kids as well as adults) were bigger than Alexa. At the last minute, I got nervous about the risk of her being tripped (or crushed!), and decided to run just behind her in case she needed me, which she did. She put in a fantastic effort on her very short little legs. Sabrina did run alone, had a very fast race at 5:33min/km (a personal record) and finished 3/34 in her category.

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We then brought the girls to the event’s daycare service (including bouncy castles and crafts). The family feeling this venue had was charming. It was even mentioned in a La Presse article on kids and running.

Guillaume’s departure for the 23.5km race was next and 15 minutes later was my 10km departure.

It was really hot, especially on the second 5km part. Although improving, I still struggle in heat. But it was a really nice circuit with beautiful scenery. I’ve also been realizing how important hill training is. I noticed on this race (just as in the mountainous Rouyn race) that the place I passed more participants was on a hill. Guillaume told me he noticed this as well on his race. The streets around our house are adorned with small hills and training on those streets day in and day out seems to really help on race day when any kind of elevation shows up on the path. You never know what kind of circuit you’ll be racing upon (and most of them do have a few hills)!

I ended with a time of 51:26min and that gave me a pace of 5:09km/min which is a few seconds faster than my Rouyn time. I finished 70/319 overall; 26/197 (female) and 12/76 (female, 30-39).

Guillaume also had a personal record on his incredible race (as was seen in his report!).

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We celebrated that evening feasting at the hotel restaurant and roasting marshmallows around the campfire. The excitement was topped off with a relaxing last couple of days in Charlevoix.

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When we first stayed on Isle-aux-Coudres in 2013, I remember running 5km one evening just under 30min for the first time; one of my first accomplished milestones. I hadn’t yet participated in a single race. Less than a year later, I’ve completed 5 races and progressed to running a 10km distance under 52 minutes. There is always a personal milestone to be achieved with running and tangible improvements are so visibly noticed and felt. Who know where we’ll be in a year from now!

Next up: my first half-marathon at Oasis Montreal!

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