Why spend hundreds of hours of demanding physical labour through the fall and winter to gain just over one-half second in the spring?
That’s a trade off Nova Scotia 800-metres runner Celia Peters has enthusiastically made in her quest for the provincial record of 2:04.19 that she would love to best at the 2015 Aileen Meagher International Track Classic on June 2 in Halifax. Her personal best of 2:04.73 in 2014 puts her just .55 of a second from a new record.
To close that gap Celia trained twice a day, six days a week throughout an icy, cold winter, rising before dawn for a short “shake-out” run in the south end of Halifax before heading off to work.
Then in the evening it was off to the Canada Games Centre for an hour and a half of warm-up, stretches, exercise drills, a lung-searing interval run series, and warm down.
“One of this winter's workouts I am most proud of is three sets of 4x400-metres with one minute rest. My week also includes weight sessions, yoga, several "medium" runs and one long run of typically an hour and 20 minutes, my favourite is along the boardwalk by the Harbour.
Celia was fortunate to briefly escape part of the winter traveling to Florida for a short training camp but otherwise her commitment to training and working in Halifax meant she braved the icy roads and sidewalks, diverting to the treadmill when necessary.
More recently she began the process of final preparation for the racing season.
“Currently I am getting my racing season started in California while the East Coast warms up. Due to the intense travel required I must leave my job and focus on track for this portion of the racing season. This leaves more time to focus on the little, but very important things, foam rolling, stretching, sleep, investigating sponsorship opportunities and proper nutrition.”
Even while in California she has the race of June 2 in Halifax in mind.
“The Aileen Meagher is always an important mid-season race that allows me to show my friends and family at home why I have dedicated so much time and effort to. It slots in directly after the first race of the National Track League in Guelph (May 30). It will be so great to sleep in my own bed and literally walk down the street for the race. My fingers are crossed for a nice, warm, calm night!”
A nice, warm night, just over a half second or more improvement on her personal best and those hundreds of hours of hard work will have all been worth it. It will be a race worth watching.