Sunday, July 17, 2005

Sandy Point Half Marathon

I tried to get an early night last night, but it was still 10.30pm before I put my book down and turned the light out. Hubby woke me up during the night when he came to bed. He'd been out to the movies with a mate and didn't get into till very late, so it took me a little while before I fell back to sleep. Managed to wake up about 10 minutes before the alarm went off, and tiptoed around the house trying not to make too much noise. As usual I'd allowed way too much time to get ready and eat some brekky, so messed around on the computer for a little while before leaving to pick Michelle up. I was also 15 minutes early to her place, but she was ready anyway, so we headed down to Sandringham. Roads were amazingly quiet (but what do you expect at 6.15 on a Sunday morning). Made it down there in about 15 minutes, so we sat in the car and chatted for about 40 minutes before venturing out into the cold. And boy was it cold. We were right on the beach and that wind was bitter. At least it wasn't raining. I could hardly put my number on as I was shivering so much!! We caught up with some of the Aus Run guys, grabbed our numbers then raced over to the holding area to drop off our bags. Had to queue for the toilets which took at least 10 minutes. Why do us women have to squat? Back over to the start and we see Eat Em right at the front of the race queue, give him a quick good luck, then me and Michelle trudge to the back of the line, which is where we said we wanted to start from as it was much less squashy than closer to the front, and we didn't want to get in the way of all the faster runners either. So the hooter goes and we race out of the reserve and onto the main road. The wind hits us as soon as we enter the road and continues to blow all the way up to the turn around point. As this is an out and back course, we see all the fast runners heading back as we're still on the first leg. A big shout and wave to Eat Em, Tony and Janice (Michelle's friend) as they pass us on their way back. We get to the turnaround point and it's back to the start line, this time with the wind behind us. The view running back is beautiful. We can see out to sea and also look over the marina. We actually get some sunshine and I almost feel warm!! Once we get back to the turnaround point, we walk through the water station and have a quick drink before going back out for the second leg. We're feeling pretty good at this stage, but the wind is a bit stronger and the gentle inclines on the first leg feel a bit more like hills on this leg. Because Michelle and I are nattering so much, I don't really notice the distance, so the turnaround point comes up quickly. We head for home, knowing exactly how far we have left to run. The marshalls are now starting to clear the bollards, so we're definitely at the back of the pack. At least there is no traffic on the road as they've closed it off to cars. We even manage to pass a few people in the last couple of kilometres. We finally head into the home straight, with Eat Em egging us on, making us run faster. We get to the reserve where the finish line is and think it is a straight run over the line, but instead the course includes a lap of the field before we enter the finish line area....thanks for that guys!!! We manage to do a fast lap (because everyone is watching!!) and do a sprint over the finish line. Ended up running 2hrs 10minutes, which we are really happy about. We thought we'd do it in about 2hr 15-20mins. Have a bit of a chat to Eat Em and Janice who were waiting at the finish line to cheer for us, then head over to the goody bag area (Power Bar, Fruit Bar and Fila Socks) and then we go and grab the coveted free T-Shirt. Because we were at the back of the pack there's not much choice in sizes, so it was either Large, Large or Large!! It was a great experience for both of us, and I'm so glad that I did this race. I've proved to myself that I can run these distances (and enjoy doing it). The next one is in 3 weeks time....can't wait!!