Today has been a long day, this morning at 6am I ran the Gold Coast Half Marathon 🙂
My husband and I drove up to the Gold Coast yesterday, caught up with friends for lunch, who also kindly looked after Polly (our dog) whilst we stayed in a hotel ready for the race today. I always get a bit nervous before races and yesterday was no different, I was quite jumpy all day and very conscious of what I was eating, how much I was drinking and how much I was on my feet.
Our hotel was an experience I would not wish to repeat! It was right in the heart of Surfers Paradise and resulted in my not getting hardly any sleep – I think 3 hours at the most which was awful! It sounded like a disco in our room thanks to the guy next door – security had to intervene at 12.15am this morning as I was very very tired and needed at least a couple of hours sleep! (one rule of racing broken – no sleep!)
So not the best start, and then I broke another rule – I had to wear pretty much brand new trainers as the last time I ran my feet hurt because my older trainers basically had died slightly too soon and there was no way I would have got round in them. They told me at Athletes Foot that if you can bend your trainers front to back then they need to be replaced…mine were well down that route.
So anyway I met the girls at 4.30am this morning and staggered to the shuttle bus.
So on the start line this morning having had hardly any sleep and wearing new trainers, I hardly felt prepared…..
I then have my toilet ritual…For some reason my brain psychologically tells me that I need to go to the toilet twice before training or racing…if I don’t go I end up feeling like I need to go half way round – generally I don’t but it’s a ‘all in the head thing’ I think. So I went for my usual two trots to the toilet and the gun went off. On went the iPod and I stuck to my guns with my Garmin 405 cx guiding me around the race keeping me aware of my pace, enabling me to pull back or push on as necessary and I felt strong.
I got depressed as I saw the 2 hour balloons go by but was told later that they stick to the gun time not the time your chip passed over the start and I was a couple of mins behind the gun. So when i looked at my faithful Garmin I realised I was still on track and should ignore the black balloon sailing off into the distance.
I sometimes find when I am bored in a race or needing to push on that I latch onto a runner in front whose pace is similar to mine and I chase them making sure I keep up with them. I did this a few times this morning to keep going and it really helped, although I was chasing a guy and he stepped up his speed in the end so I had to let him go…
So i had about 3k left and started to feel tired but pushed on and got over the finish line at approx 2hr and 6 seconds according to my watch which I was really pleased with, as the last week or so I hadn’t trained at all so I was worried I wouldn’t do under 2 and pretty much hit the target. I staggered over the line and felt a bit disorientated as I sprinted to the finish and used up my last bit of energy.
Finishing the race though more importantly meant that I raised $410 for World Vision which I am so pleased about.
The girls I trained with all finished and all did really well. I think apart from me there is only one of them that had ever done that distance in a race so I am really proud of them all for the effort they have put in and the times they achieved.
So all in all it has been a good day. I have 4 weeks until my next half marathon so I will keep you posted how training goes….