In this Issue:
- Managing the Mayhem
- Sudbury Fitness Challenge Canoe Marathon
+ Standings after 3 Events
- Ali Cummings Places 2nd in the Manitoba
- Rocks!! in Niagara Half and Marathon
- Another Successful Rocks!! Wednesday
- Upcoming Local Events:
July 1 Firecracker 5km
- Running Room Run Club Update
- Track North News
Managing the Mayhem
Bulloch, For The Sudbury Star
Sunday, June 18, 2017
takes part in the Miner's Mayhem at Adanac Ski Hill and
the Rotary Park on Saturday. Hundreds of people were challenged
to complete a 6.5 kilometre course with 17 obstacles.
(John Lappa/Sudbury Star)
On Saturday about 400 people
ran, walked, crawled, climbed, slid and slogged through
a 6.5-kilometre course plotted with 17 obstacles, including
a trudge up and down Sudbury’s Adanac Ski Hill at
the Miner’s Mayhem obstacle course race.
As two-time veteran of the
Mayhem, I had hoped to recruit my boyfriend Dan to race
with me in 2017. He’s a natural athlete with fond
memories of glory days in amateur wrestling and track.
Together, we enjoy back-country canoeing, so I figured
he might be interested in this outdoor physical challenge,
His first response: “Why
would anyone pay money to run up a hill?” It’s
a fair question. And it’s far worse than running
up a hill.
“It’s so much
more than that,” I said. “You climb slippery
ropes, jump barriers, crawl through sewer pipes, and people
shoot water at you. Then, you climb the hill, and on top,
you have to get across narrow planks up in the air while
you’re feeling a bit dizzy from the climb!”
I was really excited about
all of this. He was still looking at me quizzically. He
signed up, but then he couldn’t make it, so I ran
solo, like last year.
Fear is the first obstacle.
During the shuttle bus ride to Adanac Ski Hill, a fellow
racer regretted not bringing gloves, observing mine. Others
wore long socks with shorts and knee pads, anticipating
abrasions and bruises. Each had registered despite concerns
ranging from missing out on other weekend plans to arachnophobia,
claustrophobia, bug bites, and blisters. Some had come
from out of town. Some wore matching apparel and braided
their teammates’ hair on the bus. Other racers sat
quietly and kept to themselves. We were a motley crew
of adults on a packed school bus that sort of knew what
we were in for.
I signed up in March, ready
to race ahead into the unknown. It was a git-'er-done
kind of commitment and I planned to train harder than
ever before, cross-fit style, with five-kilometre trail
runs built in for cardio. Yet, I let all sorts of life
obstacles get in the way. So, a week before the event,
I tried running the Rotary Trail and up and down Adanac
Ski Hill a few times to test my readiness. My legs burned
and pollen clogged my lungs, but I felt something stir
– it was that awesome feeling of adrenaline when
you look at a monster, then slay it.
At the site, waves of racers
start in the “cage.” It’s a shipping
container packed with people. For some, it feels claustrophobic.
The doors close and create total darkness until they fly
open and it all begins. The fresh air and light felt amazing
once I left the cage. My legs carried me forward almost
effortlessly, until the first obstacles: tires, greasy
ropes and steep metal stairs.
Twenty-one minutes in, through
those first trials, I was doing okay. I was soaked from
the waist down, my running shoes squishy after emerging
from a tub of water about the size of two refrigerators.
The good news: I was breathing well and not cramped up.
I figured long and boring flats lay ahead of me and I
pushed on. Instead, there was a detour through the forest,
with over/under obstacles, banishing my expectation of
boredom and leaving me guessing.
Pushing through, volunteers
and racers exchanged words of thanks and encouragement.
There’s a camaraderie that you don’t find
in every road or trail race. “Crawl on your toes,
save your knees,” remarked one racer moving through
a low tarp-covered grass-crawl obstacle. “It works,
do it,” yelled another from beneath the tarp. I
swapped muddy high-fives and heard shouts like: “It’s
the last hill, I swear, you’re almost there.”
When you’re in the
Mayhem, you don’t think about anything else –
you’re living minute-by-minute, pushing yourself
while protecting yourself. In a nod to mine safety, racers
remark “no miner left behind,” offering hands
to a muddy buddy or struggling stranger.
At the end, most racers can’t
wait to see the finish. They grimace with effort, then
smile as they cross the line. Some wait for teammates
to finish together, or to pose for a photo.
At that moment, I still had
lots of energy, but the timing chip laced to my shoe didn’t
matter as much. I felt a sense of community and accomplishment
more powerful than my time or divisional rank. But, for
the competitive and the curious, the fact that it’s
a chip time race is a big benefit. I’m proud to
be No. 31 of 147 women solo racers. Results are online
I’m grateful that I
“paid money to run up a hill.” I have more
great memories, a few bruises of honour, and I helped
a charity (the cause was muscular dystrophy).
To everyone who volunteered,
who raced, and who generally made this event excellent
in 2017, thanks. To everyone who’s still wondering
why anyone does it: you won’t know until you try.
I’ll see you out there, if you can manage the Mayhem!
Lynn Bulloch was a member
of the Blasting Agents team in 2015, and competed as an
individual racer in the last two Miner's Mayhem events.
Sudbury Fitness Challenge Canoe Marathon
Partnerships at the SFC Canoe Marathon
When I think of the Sudbury Fitness
Challenge, I envision athletes competing and participating
on their own accord. Skiing, running, swimming, cycling
and paddling – all individual endurance sports
which make up this series. Even the Beaton awards
points based on individual performance in each leg
of the race, regardless of whether you are on a team
or racing solo.
I hadn’t really reflected on the individualistic
nature of the series, until I arrived at the Canoe
Club this past Sunday. The Canoe Marathon, event 3,
throws a wrench into this solo’istic series.
The canoe race is traditionally a partnership. Two
racers work together to paddle and portage a canoe.
Sure, some participants choose the kayak option, and
race solo, but the majority of competitors enter the
tandem canoe category.
As I caught up with
some of my SFC friends, our conversation centered
around paddling partners. Your partner can make or
break your day. Paddling requires an incredible amount
of teamwork, cooperation, patience, communication
skills, negotiation, cheerleading. Much like a marriage.
Funny enough, very few life partners will paddle together.
My friends joked about their disastrous outings paddling
with their spouses. Even I knew my marriage was over
on our last canoe trip together, in which a heated
argument resulted in me leaving him on an island while
I paddled away.
When Neil and I met, as adults with lots of history
behind us, we kept a healthy dose of reality in our
early dating stage. Neil candidly asked me about life
philosophies, and I answered with honesty and thankfully
correctly. I took Neil for a paddle. It was, like
our relationship, easy. We worked together, paddling
in sync, no stress, no arguing. I knew then that I
had found my partner, in life and in the canoe.
I appreciate that the Canoe Marathon throws a partnership
requirement into the Sudbury Fitness Challenge. Even
us individualistic solo endurance athletes benefit
Congratulations to all those amazing paddling partnerships
this past Sunday. From the father/son pairs like John
and James Larmer, Colin and Kaeden Ward, to best friends
Karensx2 and Julie and Tamara, to even a few partners
also in life like Monica and Tyler, I invite you to
celebrate the special bonds we have with our paddling
Here are the Sudbury
Fitness Challenge points standings after 3 events.
Thank you Casey Crowe for banging those together so
See you all at the Island Swim!!
622 Participants • 176 Women • 446 Men
Sponsored by MANITOBA LIQUOR & LOTTERIES
to Rocks!! member Ali Cummings for her excellent showing
in the Manitoba Marathon. Ali came 2nd lady overall
and first in her age category.
OVERALL PLACE 28/622
GENDER PLACE 2/176
CATEGORY PLACE 1/35
GUN TIME 3:16:24.8
by Ali Cummings
Amazing 4 days in Winnipeg...
so much due to my sister, bro-in-law and their adorable
kiddos being such great hosts. Lots of snuggles with
my niece and nephew!
Now, the race. Of course,
it rained - but the weather was perfection. I crossed
the start line with my cousin, sister and friend -
then Tay and I set into our "4:44/km" pace.
I knew we were closer to 4:38 and I was worried at
the half way mark because I'm an even pace runner
and I wasn't sure I was going to be able to keep it
going. Then it became a real race!! We were 4th and
5th for quite a long time (and honestly, I didn't
really care, I wanted my sub 3:20). But we passed
#3, with #2 quite far away but within sight and then
Tay took off around 28, with legs feeling better than
mine. I thought she could catch her. I was setting
into my repeat #4 position, happy because I knew I
could run a 5 min/k and still reach my goal, but the
spectators kept pushing me to catch my cousin... I
laughed and continued, almost missing a turn (not
paying attention) and took my headphones out to focus
& listen to my breath and I met back up with my
cousin around 40k. She had a stitch and was hating
the last couple kms so I pushed on. Somehow I caught
#2 (who I could see was slowing) in the last km right
before I saw my sister Sarah (she had run the 10k)
and she was shocked & screaming so excitedly -
it was the best feeling. Turned into the stadium to
finish and all of a sudden a woman was following me
around as my "shadow" and I had to wait
for awards; it was a bit surreal. Apparently the volunteers
were having fun tracking the intense turn of positions
too - the race official cyclists giving updates! Tay
was less than a minute behind me in 4th with an absolutely
amazing first marathon. We cheered Hailey and then
our friend in, in some pain but very happy to be finished.
Somehow Sarah got into the finisher area with warm
clothes and big hugs for all, taking care of us shivering,
sore, muddy girls. Sometimes you have a good day,
and that was it for me... in combination with having
Tay push me.
The course was just as
good in reverse, the stadium finish was fun, and the
volunteers were fantastic. As always, sad to say goodbye
to family but so much fun this weekend!
I'm hoping 2017 will be the year of
the PB - need to find a half for the fall! Sub 1:30,
I see youuu.
Rocks in Niagara Half and Marathon
Ken and Lynn Stubbings
completed the half (her) and full (him) at the Niagara
We both received
a Niagara Ultra sweatshirt. Kinda hot right now for
that. Ken's 1st place for his age plaque, our race
#'s and finisher medals.
4:03:20 4:03:10 Cobourg 5:46 /Km M 10 MM55-59 1 out
2:30:30 2:29:44 Cobourg 7:06 /Km F 103 HF50-54 8 out
trail from Niagara-on-the-lake to Niagara Falls was
the amazing backdrop for our race this morning. It
was a beautiful "summer" day in the region.
The 30 degree temp with humidex of 39 certainly tested
the staying power of the participants. Thank goodness
we had some times when it was overcast with a breeze.
The gelato was a welcomed treat afterward. Ken finished
his 96th marathon - placing at the top of his age
group again. I finished my 78th half. It's a beautiful
course if you're looking for a destination race. Tip
- good idea to carry your own hydration of choice.
On a day like today the aid stations every 5km are
a bit far apart. Free beer and pizza at the finish
were enjoyed by many. We've had events every week
or two the last few months. We actually have a month
break before the next full/half. What will we do with
ourselves??? Train, of course.
member Henry Wong took on his first 50k event. Congratulations
to all 3 runners.
5:48:44 5:48:23 Falconbridge 6:59 /Km M 42 LM45-49
Another Successful Rocks!! Wednesday
the apres stretch
Upcoming Local Events
July 1st, 2017 - 6pm Walden Arena
Race Start Times:
6:15pm Kids 1km Fun Run
7:00pm 5km Road Race
The 30th annual Walden Firecracker Road
Race is being held on the evening of July 1st, with the
kids race beginning at 6:15pm, and the 5k race beginning
at 7:00pm. Join in on the Canada Day festivities with
a 5k race, or a 1k race for the younger runners. There
will be lots of great prizes to be won, as well as refreshments
and snacks following the run.
The proceeds of the race will go towards
the Laurentian Vees Cross-Country Team. Fundraising ...is
crucial to our running season, and every registration
If you have any questions at all, be sure
to ask! The registration fees for the race this year are
$25 for the 5k event and $2 for the kids 1k event. You
may register online by following the link found below,
or can pick up a registration form at the Running Room.
Basic details regarding the race may also
be found at www.tracknorth.com
Hello Runners and Walkers,
Happy Running and Walking everyone!
See you all tomorrow at the Run Club,
Eric, Ania, Sam, Brendan, Kristina
We have FREE run club Wednesday nights
at 6pm and Sunday mornings at 8:30am.
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