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BMO Marathon Weekend: Look who came to lunch!

Posted May 07 2013 4:59pm
Friday was a great way to start off BMO Vancouver Marathon weekend and the festivities continued on Saturday.  For me, this weekend was also a special treat because my husband was awesome for taking care of the boys and not giving me a hard time for being busy nearly the entire weekend.  I love my kids but had been looking so forward to Saturday's time away with just good girl friends.  Kinda like getting a day-pass from motherhood!  Ha ha.

Krista and I decided to head downtown and get there for when the expo opened at 10:00 am.  We picked Solana up along the way and continued on our way.  Solana was pretty excited to tell us she had received a direct message from Bart Yasso the night before wishing her the best of luck on her race.  When she told us she was thinking of inviting him to join us for lunch we all agreed and said, sure, the worst he can do is say no!

Our spring in Vancouver has been decent but this weekend was turning out to be downright unbelievable weather-wise.  It was such a gorgeous day to walk around downtown by the waterfront and Olympic torch.

And it wouldn't have been a proper girl's day out without a group selfie, right?
Sorry about my finger in the top corner ladies!
And finally, who could resist having a shot in front of this geeky bus?  More about that "bliss in blisters" thing to come during my actual race report!

Krista and I - I'm the one with the toothpaste coloured legs!
After our tourist photo ops, we headed into the expo and jumped straight to the front of the line thanks to our special VIP status from having been event volunteers the day before.  And thank goodness because the Saturday morning line was HUGE!  It didn't take very long for Krista to grab her package and double check her bib chip was working and then we headed off into the expo to check things out.

BMO marathon doesn't typically have the greatest shopping at the expo and that's one things that kind of surprises me.  At your typical American race you've pretty much got every big name in running and tons of new ones too.  I would have thought BMO had enough international pull to draw more of these guys to the expo and hopefully they can work on that for the future.  We looked around and visited lots but it didn't take long to cover the floor.  Just as we were leaving Solana got the reply that we'd be having a special guest join us at lunch.

We decided to eat at the new Cactus Club Coal Harbour which is right beside the convention centre on the waterfront.


This was the first time I'd been there and our table was in a great spot.  The view was amazing and the entire wall of windows actually opened up, so nice...

Would you believe that everyone in the restaurant started clapping
when the waiters opened the windows?  Too funny.
Our lunch had been planned as a little bit of a blogger/Twitter meetup for those who could make it.  It was a small group but I was so happy that we could have Leana , Krista , Solana , Alanna and Alex all meet up for a pre-race bite.  We were wrist deep into a yummy bowl of yam fries and a round of waters when our last guest, Bart Yasso arrived.  It was kind of fun because Krista, Solana and I knew he'd be coming but we hadn't told the others so the surprise on their faces was kind of fun.

So what do you do when a running heavyweight like Bart Yasso joins you and your friends for lunch? You be yourself, that's what!  The great thing about Bart (and probably part of why he accepted the lunch invitation) is that he is a fantastic people person.  He has a very easy-going personality, loves to chat and get to know people and in general is a very laid back guy.  Admittedly I was a bit nervous knowing he'd be there but our conversation as a group was so natural and easy, it was a really enjoyable visit.

It was a real treat to get to spend some time chatting with someone who has so many great stories and is such an inspiration to so many runners.  Thanks Bart!

Borrowed from Solana's Instagram feed, from left to rightNeil (Leana's Hubs), Leana, Alex, Alanna, Me, Krista
Solana and her new BFF Bart
Anyhow, so lunch was definitely a high point of the day to say the least.  Afterwards we spent a bit more time in the sun and snapped a couple extra pictures before we each had to head in different directions...


Krista, Solana and I had some things to deliver to another friend Jillian (yes, Jillian Walker of Runcouver fame) so we headed off to meet up with her.  I don't get to see Jillian very often so it was great to get in an impromptu catch up with her before heading back home.

It had been a great day and as I headed home I was getting really excited about the next day's race.  I was nervous of course.  With my whole calf injury debacle in the last couple months I really didn't know how well trained I was, had I done enough?  I didn't know if it would hold up over the full distance or if I'd be in pain soon after starting.  I was excited and pumped bit didn't know if it would all be for naught if I ended up having trouble during the race.  Oh and did I mention that my thighs were still pretty tender from crossfit a couple days earlier?  Oops.

I decided I'd spend the rest of the afternoon and evening just being chill.  I couldn't do anything more at that point so I wanted to just be relaxed and calm.  The boys were playing in the backyard with Daddy when I got home so I set about getting all of my race stuff organized.

Here's my haul from the expo, mostly our package stuff
I wasn't totally decided on what I'd wear but knew I'd be wearing my magic compression pants, some combination of my standard Lululemon tanks and my newest Mizuno Wave Riders (LOVE them!).  I was more concerned about the extras: did I need a throwaway? Should I start with gloves? Did I need a visor?

We had a nice dinner and I had a good long soak in the bath to relax a bit more before bed.  For past races i've often had trouble sleeping the night before but it was truly awesome to crawl into bed around 9:15 and drift easily to sleep shortly thereafter.  I am so enjoying my improved sleep since doing Whole30 and keeping much of it up.

My alarm was set super early for 3:45 the next morning so my next post will be my actual race report!
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