On Saturday & Sunday, May 4 and 5, members of coach Jeff’s Team Over The Top running clinics competed in the 5 km, 1/2 marathon and marathon events of Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. Despite a heavy rain for Saturday’s 5 km event & a powerful, steady north wind on Sunday, all team members performed well. Also, in spite of numerous setbacks for many of the Team Over The Toppers, they got the job done and then some.
In the 5 km race:
- Samantha Candeloro-Wolter (a 13 year-old 1st year member of my Youth Running Clinic) set a personal record of 31:15, finishing with lots left in her tank. The next goal is sub-30 minutes in the MADD Strides For Change 5 km run on Sunday, June 8 in Port Credit). Knowing Sam, this will not be a problem.
In the 1/2 Marathon race:
- Annette Carter polished off a 2:03:52 – this with 2 rather long (and untimely) washroom breaks. She was on pace to go well under 2:00 but this will have to wait till her next 1/2
- Megan Leon (age 18) and the much older coach (age 61!) finished together in 1:51:41. Details as per my previous blog. Suffice it to say, just think if we had trained for the darn distance…:-))
In the Full Marathon race:
- Louise (the mother) and Patrick (the 14 year old son and youngest in the field) Jefferson finished together in 4:47. It was good enough for Patrick to finish 1st in the boys U19 division – this being his 1st ever marathon after doing a few 15 km, 21.1 km and 30 km (Around The Bay) races since 2011. He showed incredible mental fortitude and focus for someone so young. Great things will be accomplished by this young man. Mom Louise, being a veteran of a few marathons but coming off a broken toe from February, 2014, maintained a positive attitude, supported Patrick fully and still managed to tolerate the pain. It doesn’t get much better than a Mother-Son marathon finish 1 week prior to Mother’s Day.
- Michelle (barefoot) Bolhuis finished in 5:26. Yes, she ran the whole marathon barefoot – the only one to do so. This with something stuck in the outside sole of her left foot that caused her to inadvertently over-pronate for most of the distance. You might argue “then WHY in God’s name run barefoot?”. In Michelle’s case, this is the only way she can run pain-free (her right ACL is slightly torn and gets aggravated when she runs in ‘coffins’ – aka running shoes). She now moves on to a number of IMs between July and December
- David Harris gets the Team over The Top ‘guts over glory’ award. He finished in 5:26 – this with a severely torn medial meniscus in his left knee that was hooking up just beneath the knee cap (patella). Needless to say, this caused debilitating pain with every stride. David HAD to do the Mississauga Marathon – this is to fulfill a promise he made in memory of his son, Cameron, who died at age 19. David’s promise was to run the Mississauga Marathon for 19 consecutive years (1 for each year of Cam’s life), raising funds for his non-profit foundation – CameronHelps. Needless to say, I have nothing but respect for my dear friend…especially when I consider the fact that he usually finishes in under 4 hours
As you can gather, these are special people doing special things. They are difference-makers who will continue to make a positive impact on the world at large. A special congratulations to each and every one of you!!
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