The Manitoba Marathon, which takes place in Winnipeg, is officially the first marathon I go to with the excuse to visit family. In normal circumstances, these trips tend to be conversational, easy going, but when I put a marathon in the middle, it becomes more exciting, energetic, and positive. It replaces the usual daily problems subjects we have around the table.
This time I was more relaxed than in my previous marathons. That would be my third one, less than a month after my second, which helped me to release my anxiety. I didn’t have a goal. I just wanted to have fun.
The race morning was sunny, comfortably cold, dry, just perfect for a long run. The marathon started beside a large football stadium. The starting field was composed of the marathon, half-marathon, and relay runners. We all started together to separate at some point. The course was very scenic, and flat, mostly in neighborhoods and parks. That’s what makes this race special. We get huge support from residents throughout the whole course.
After a while in the race, I started noticing that the majority of runners were doing the relay. I saw a huge crowd in the transition spots and I could count with the fingers of one hand the runners that passed through them without stopping. Here goes more special moments. The color of the bib distinguished who was running the full marathon solo and who was doing the relay. So, when I was crossing the transition crowd, they all cheered for me like I was an elite runner.
As always, the last miles are the hardest ones, but I still felt strong enough to run for a new personal best. When I saw the stadium on the horizon I felt a sense of relief and rushed my pace to get it done. Entering the stadium and running in the middle of the field to cross the finish line, gave me chills.
The Manitoba Marathon is very well organized and certainly recommended. I can’t promise I will run it again, but it gave me an idea: what if I run a marathon in every Canadian capital city?
Best Marathon Time to Date: 04:18:12
Elevation: 55 m