Event and Race Reviews
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Melissa's 10k and 22k
Author: mike runs
It's a great race and a fun day.
The start and finish are at the Banff recreation grounds, just across the river from downtown. There's music, food, and fun all day. It's one of those rare events where you can bring the family and they can stay entertained while you're out on the course. Beer tent!
As an alternative, if timing doesn't work or whatever, there is a teriffic half in Canmore about two weeks prior to Melissa's. Up until this year the ran it from the Nordic centre, out towards three sisters parkway, then back into the townsite along the river. It changed somewhat this year because of construction at the nordic centre (I missed it with an injury). It's a much hillier course but with great views and some very rewarding climbs.
Wow. This race is incredible. I ran it as a LSD for the Toronto half, but even at a slow pace and easy HR training zone, I was drained by the end. Not sure if it was the hilly course or the altitude or both. But, as a LSD I really got to take my time, and forced myself to remain unfocused and enjoy my surroundings. AND what surroundings they were! AT one point we ran up to the foot of one of the big mountains. And if you looked up it filled your whole field of vision. Simply amazing. The views were outstanding in every direction. WIth some beautiful bodies of water, a nice golf course, and more snow capped mountains than yoiu can experience almsot anywhere else in the world.
My Pet Peeve in races the aid stations, were plentiful and well stocked. Unfortunately no gatorade on the course which is always upseting.
For a 22km race in Banff most of the course was relatively flattish (rolling hills) until about 16k. Then you spend the rest of the race going up, and then down, down, down, and then up, up, up until you turnaround and do it back in reverse. It's a tough ending, but very memorable.
Finally they used a comapny called FleetFeetPhotos.com for photography, and I urge all runners to mention these guys to other race directors. They were fabulous and most importantly value priced! I got 5 digital prints of the best race pictures I've ever seen for a total price of $12. Every other race I've done wants $40 for 1 lousy picture.
This is one of the hottest races in Calgary and suspect almost anywhere. The Melissa's 10 and 22 K races. This year the 22K race could have been sold out in 5 minutes - 1,500 limit but so many people overwhelmed the internet they had to restrict access so it sold out in a little over one day. I got lucky and will be running the 22k. Ran the 10 K last year.
Surrounded by mountains, the 10 K has one big killer hill and several smaller killers. Not that it matters much because what other race follows a hiking/walking trail that goes past the Banff Springs Hot pool and until the trees. About the last K is downhill and allowed me one hell of the sprint.
Broke the one absolute rule - tired something new and had to disappear into bushes ... so much for breaking the 40 minute barrier. The t-shirts are collectors items.