Last Sunday, after weeks of hard training, the ORBIS Run For Sight team completed the Toronto Half Marathon. Below, I chronicle our experiences on race day, October 19, 2008.
5:30AM: The alarms start going off signaling that the day the ORBIS Run for Sight team has been anticipating for months is finally here. As the team steps out into the crisp 0°C air in our ORBIS running T-Shirts we reflect on our long journey to Toronto:
It all started one day when two ORBIS staff members discovered that ORBIS Canada was a beneficiary of the Toronto Marathon. After some convincing, they were able to create a list of names of potential runners. Little did those of us who signed up know how much this day would change us. We hired a running coach and started training in July. Barely able to run one mile without collapsing, nine of us jogged up and down Manhattan's west side highway every Monday and Wednesday after work. Our colleagues became used to seeing us in our shorts and sneakers, complaining about aches and pains, and talking incessantly about our training. We even lost three of our teammates along the way due to injuries, but the rest of us persevered. We were determined, despite being slightly skeptical, that we would run 13.1 miles on October 19th.
The ORBIS Run for Sight team at a rest stop in Niagara Falls