Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Run for the Kids

On Sunday morning I set my alarm for 6.30am so I would have plenty of time to get to the Botanical Gardens for the start of the 'Run for the Kids' at 9am. I forgot one important detail - the end of daylight savings which meant I was an hour earlier than I needed to be!!! So I went back to bed for an hour and then made my way to the Botanical Gardens by 8am.

At the starting line I caught up with a few other runners I knew and patiently (okay not so patiently) waited for the start of the race. With 20,000 runners competing in the 14.1km run it took some time to actually make it across the starting line. I enjoyed running through the tunnel and saw the kilometer markers for 1 and 2km but strangely enough I somehow missed the 3-5km markers and finally saw the 6km marker just before the Bolte Bridge. It was about this point that I realised I had forgotten another important detail - to recharge my MP3 player! So I then spent the rest of the run listening to the sound of my ragged breathing and the gentle slap, slap of the footfall of the 100s of other runners around me.

I was very pleased to make it to the top of the Bolte Bridge, where I was greeted with the sight of two multi-colored cows playing the sax and the drums. No I wasn't hallucinating, two guys had trekked up the bridge in cow costumes with their instruments and played to entertain the masses - it brought a smile to my face and briefly made me forget about the pain! It was great to see the 7km marker (half-way) and then the 8km marker and then strangely enough I never saw another marker till 14km!!!

I finally made it to Flinders Street station with only an easy 1.5km left to run. I crossed the finish line in 71min 44sec exactly 5 minutes slower than last year. I was actually quite disappointed with my time but had to accept that the 100km run the week before had probably tired me out more than I knew and hence accounted for my slower time.

So what did I learn from this run 1) this was the first large scale race I had competed in since Melbourne Marathon last year (October) and it was nice to be running amongst a whole heap of like minded people and to see people of all descriptions out there giving it a go 2) this also meant there were lots of people running ahead of me that I could target to try and catch - and overtake - this really helped me pushing on even when it was tough 3) I can't always run a PB (Personal Best) for every race and when I don't there is usually a pretty good reason - like not recovering from a huge running event the week before!