This year I ran my first ever Summerfast. It’s a 10k around Stanley Park. Before you start groaning and saying it’s just another Stanley Park seawall race, it’s actually a really good one. It’s run by one of the fastest clubs in the city, VFAC, and attracts a lot of very competitive athletes. It’s definitely an event to watch or race. Also, there are tons of delicious post-race baked goods.
The Summerfast 10K Route
The route starts along the bike path next to Ceperley Park and goes along the south side of Lost Lagoon. There is a little out and back just outside Stanley Park but soon you’re back on the seawall running counter-clockwise back to the finish at Ceperley Park. The race is flat, fast, and very scenic, perfect for PB’s.
How did I do?
It’s been a really long time since I last raced a 10k. After all, around this time, I was still in trail mode. I wasn’t sure how well I’d do since I had very little speed training. I decided to just do my best and spend time with good friends. The race started off quite fast with the first 3 km at 5:30/km. I finally evened out a little bit but I don’t know what happened at the 8 km mark.
If anything, I thought I sped up at that point since we were on the other side of the park where there was shade. I’m glad I managed to speed up a bit more for the last kilometre and finished with a chip time of 58:01. It was an unexpected PB for me, despite no speed training and no tapering. The trails seem to be working wonders for my fitness 🙂
Baked Goods and Friendly Competition
Another great thing about Summerfast is that it encourages friendly competition among local run clubs. Prizes are given out for largest club and fastest club. Mile2Marathon swept both categories & won cakes. This was not surprising, as they have so many speedy runners. The West Van Run Crew got 2nd largest club repped at the race and even better, M2M shared their prize cakes with us, so thank you!
The real prize for all finishers is the plethora of baked goods that the good folks at VFAC made for us. I had some chocolate crinkles which really hit the spot. Nuun Hydration was also on site so I was happy I didn’t need to bring my own hydration to this race.
Quick Recap of Summerfast
Organization – Very organized, the website was informative, I was able to pick up my bib on race morning and there was gear check on site. There were no issues.
Course – As I said, flat, fast and scenic. If you’ve never run Stanley Park seawall before, this is the race for you. If you’ve run the seawall before, well then you have an advantage since you know how far along you are at the race and can make strategic speed burst decisions.
Swag – No finisher medals but tons of finisher pastries, cookies, muffins, and more! There were also trivia/door prizes to be won and if you get many of your friends together, you could even win one of the run club prizes.
Would I Do it Again? Yes! I think this will be a new annual tradition race for me.