Run 709: Unbearable 5K

Today’s run didn’t go at all as planned, but it almost didn’t happen at all, so in the end it went surprisingly well, all things considered.

First, the bug bites from Saturday (of which there were many–at least 18 on my right leg, eight on my left) were flaring up again this morning, all red and itchy as heck. So walking and running would make this even worse, probably, and for that reason I thought it might be nice to just spend the day in the bathtub instead.

But I did get changed and used cheap motivational tricks to get myself heading out.

Right around the 1 km mark of the walk, when I was traversing down the stairs into Lower Hume Park I suddenly remembered my pasties. My nipple guards. If I was doing a 10K and sweated copiously, there was a distinct possibility that both nipples would bleed like they were extras in a Saw outtake. Going back would mean adding 18+ minutes to the whole thing. I just kept heading to the lake, mulling a potential Plan B.

Potential Plan B’s:

  • Don’t run at all, just do an epic 18 km walk around the lake and back
  • Do a 5K run instead, so less overall sweating
  • Do a 10K and hope that the cooler temperatures would offset the humidity and result in less sweating

As it was, I ended up going with Plan C:

  • Do a crazy back-and-forth combo of main and side trails for a total of 5K after three different people warned me about a mother bear and two cubs “ten minutes” up the way I was heading

A man and a couple (walking in close proximity of each other) flagged me down as I set off clockwise down the Avalon Trail, where four fresh new culverts have been installed. As expected, the man warned me he had seen a mother bear and two cubs wander off the trail and into the woods about ten minutes back (roughly a km or about six minutes for me at normal running pace). He seemed somewhat confident that the bears would be gone if I continued on, but when it comes to a mother bear and the potential to see me as a threat to her cubs, then mauling me to death, I am good with giving the bears an extremely wide berth, and switched to counter-clockwise and made the call to do only 5K by looping around the side trail and out, which I did.

Because the run was relatively short, I had no issues and felt very springy, finishing with a pace of 5:57/km and a BPM of exactly 150 (it got as high as 157 on the last km as I stepped on the gas a little).

The hip didn’t actually make its presence known at all until I was walking back on the river trail, but it was no big deal. I ran a fair bit there, too, since I had energy to spare. Funny how 5K almost feels short now.

Overall, a decent, if shorter than expected, start to the week.

I look forward to the bears hibernating.

And here’s the map of my route (I have no idea why Apple uses a dark map, it looks terrible, but Apple gonna Apple). The leg on the right was my expected route, before I doubled back and did a couple loops over on the north side of the lake (oh, and so it doesn’t drive you crazy, the cut-off text says Warner Loat Park):


Run 709
Average pace: 5:57/km
Location: Burnaby Lake (a little of every direction)
Start: 10:11 a.m.
Distance: 5.02 km
Time: 29:54
Weather: Sun with high cloud
Temp: 21-22ºC
Humidity: 67-54%
Wind: light
BPM: 150
Weight: 160.9
Total distance to date: 5202 km
Devices: Apple Watch Series 5, iPhone 12, AirPods (3rd generation)
Shoes: Brooks Caldera 5 (310 km)

Leave a Comment