Runner profile: Tracy DeWolfe

Today I bring you my next runner profile! Tracy is a Halifax-based runner who is training for the Ottawa Marathon. I originally met her through Team Awesome, and have really enjoyed following her journey on Twitter. Many of us can relate to Tracy's story (personally, I remember signing up for a Learn to Run class!). Without further ado, I'm so pleased to introduce Tracy! 

Name: Tracy DeWolfe

Location: Halifax, Nova Scotia

Years Running: Almost 6 with a few gaps

Why you run:  The reason I started is because I needed to exercise. I was never athletic. I tried going the gym but that would only work for a couple days. I signed up for a Learn To Run class at my local Running Room with a friend. I admit I didn’t love it and I stop a few times for various reasons but I always came back to it. Eventually I learned to love it. I get to spending time outside after sitting at a desk all day. I get to eat treats (especially cheesecake!) without feeling guilty. I have also made some great friends. We train together. We socialize on the weekends. We even take race vacations together. To date, the biggest ones have been Ottawa and Disney.


Race distance of choice: Tough choice but I think the half. After training for a few half and full marathons, I like the long runs on the weekend.

PRs: 5k – 28:21, 10k – 1:03:04, Half – 2:17:52, Full – 5:12:05

Favourite Race: Another tough choice. We have some great races in Nova Scotia but I would have to say that my favourite is Maritime Race Weekend in September. It’s a pirate themed Friday night / Saturday morning race weekend. Friday night is a 5k race at sunset along the coast. Saturday morning is a distance of your choice (5k, 10k, Half or Full). I’ve only done the 10k. If you run both days, you get 3 medals. A couple of years ago, they added fireworks after the run on Friday night. It’s a great weekend that my friends and I enjoy.

Favourite piece of running gear: I’m going to have to say my Asics GT2000. They are the only sneaker I have worn. I have to add my Garmin as well. I don’t always pay attention to it while I’m running but I like to look at the run afterward. It also documents my running streak.

Favourite running memory: Finishing my first marathon last year. It is a great accomplishment to finish any race but your first marathon is extra special, especially after the horrible winter we had. My goal was to finish upright and smiling. I did both of those as well as exceeded any time goal I may have hoped for. I was able to finish with my training partner. We crossed the finish line at the same time. We then met up with 12 other people who trained and travelled to Ottawa together. 11 of us were first time marathoners!

Best running advice you’ve picked up along the way: Trust your training. If you are following your training plan, you will make it to the end of the race.

Favourite quote or mantra: “It doesn’t get easier, you get stronger” I have a medal rack with this saying. I remind myself of this when the runs are hard. I remember that the things I have done around the run that may have made the run tough or that I ran it faster than in the past. Every run makes you stronger.

Goals: I would like to break 5 hours in Ottawa…weather depending. Ottawa tends to heat up faster than Halifax so we’ll see what happens. I try not to focus too much on new PBs as it can play with my mind during the race but I am always happy to get one.

Next race: Bluenose 10k on May 22nd. It will be a run, not a race since I’ll be running the full in Ottawa the following weekend.

Favourite songs to run to: Unless I’m running by myself (which rarely happens) or I’m doing speedwork, I don’t listen to music. Footloose tends to perk me up and make me run faster.

Favourite podcasts and/or books: I’m a big reader of fiction. I’m currently on a James Patterson kick. I think I’ve read 7 of his books in a row.

Maritime Race Weekend 2015

Runner profile: Rebecca Wemyss

For this week's runner profile, I'm so happy to introduce you to a fellow Ottawa Marathon Team Awesome member, Rebecca Wemyss! I first started to follow Rebecca's training journey via her blog. As a fellow Ottawa run blogger, I love reading her updates. She posts about her training, race tips and daily life. She has an impressive race resume, with a range of race distances. Rebecca is also a teacher and a proud cross country and track & field coach. Without further ado, I'm so pleased to introduce Rebecca!

Name: Rebecca Wemyss
Location: Orleans, Ontario
Years Running: 6 years
Why you run: I started running 6 years ago when I first moved to Ottawa and was underemployed and bored at home. I felt like I needed to get in better shape and thought running was a good idea. I started off running with some random sneakers and a cotton t-shirt! Now I run because I've realized that I'm not bad at it and enjoy the challenge. 
Race distance of choice: 5K - not because it is short, but because it is fast and can be challenging. I used to be a sprinter, so I still like to go fast.
PRs: 24:52 for the 5K, 54:54 for the 10K, 2:12 for the half marathon and 5:40 for the marathon (which I am desperate to update).
Favourite Race: Although Ottawa Race Weekend has a special place in my heart - NYC Marathon was one of the best race experiences I've ever had. Who knew that 42.2K plus a large amount of travel time would be so much fun.
Favourite piece of running gear: Brooks Glycerins and my Garmin Forerunner 15 watch.
Favourite running memory: Running with Lanni Marchant! During the Pan Am Games, Lanni asked her social media followers if we wanted to go out for a run and some beers after her 10,000m race. A smallish group of about 30 people ran 4K around the Canadian National Exhibition grounds and then went for beers after. Not only did I get to run with Lanni, but it was fun meeting other runners, including some who I knew from Twitter. The whole Pan Am Experience was amazing. I attended two days of Athletics events and had a great couple of days. 
Best running advice you’ve picked up along the way: Long runs are meant to be run super slow and cross training/strength training is your friend!
Favourite quote or mantra: You can do hard things.
Goals: My big goal for the next year or two will be to qualify for the Canadian 5K Championships.
Next race: Ottawa Race Weekend's Marathon - hopefully. Having some ongoing issues with my legs and might change my race. But I really want to run the marathon.
Favourite songs to run to: Letterbomb by Green Day (Broadway edition), any music from The Dark Knight soundtrack, anything upbeat by Our Lady Peace. Basically anything that has a fast tempo and lots of guitars. 
Favourite podcasts and/or books:  Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson, My Life in France by Julia Child, Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures by Vincent Lam.
You can find Rebecca on Instagram, Twitter and check out her blog.

Back at it

After two weeks of vacation, this past week was all about getting back into the groove of things. All in all I’m feeling refreshed and recharged. I started training for my spring marathon last Monday - nothing like starting a new training cycle to get you amped up. It also helped that I’m in the midst of a run streak. As I mentioned, Run Ottawa has challenged its members to run at least 1.5km every day for the month of January. I’m pleased to say I’ve successfully made 12 days :) I’m using a 21 week training plan for the Ottawa Marathon, similar to what I did for Hamilton. I've used shorter plans in the past and found that I respond better to the longer cycle, as it allows for a solid base building and ramp up. I’m also thrilled to be working with Lindsey from Out for a Run Training again.

My runs this week went well and were all in my easy pace range. Normally I run 4-5 days a week, with two days of rest  (before and after the long run). With the run streak, I’ve been doing 2km easy on my rest days. I read somewhere that a run that lasts less than 30 minutes doesn't require much recovery, so I'm not too worried about over dong it.



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My long run was 20km on Saturday. I woke up that morning and noticed fresh snow on the ground (it is winter, after all). The temperatures were warm enough that I knew it wouldn’t be too icy, so I decided to go out as planned. I’m so glad I did. While it was tough to run on the snow (basically the whole route had not been plowed), it was a beautiful morning. I took an espresso Hammer gel around 10km and had some water in hand.

Quickly after the long run, we hopped in the car and travelled to Montreal. My sister and bother-in-law had been taking care of our kitty while we were out East for New Years. Happy to have Saxby back! We also had dinner at Steak Frites. Highly recommend this place if you're in Montreal! Basically you pick your meat, and they bring unlimited fries and sauces to go with. Yum.


In other news, my parents completed an 8 hour ultra this weekend. THEY ARE AMAZING. I highly recommend checking out the race recap on my Mom's blog.

What spring races are you training for?   


Just a quick post to say hello! Welcome to The Pacing Life, my little corner of the internets. I've decided to write a blog to chronicle training and life events along the way. While this will mostly be a running blog, I'll likely end up covering a smattering of things. I live in Ottawa and I'm currently training for the Hamilton Road2Hope Marathon on November 1, 2015. Thanks for stopping by.