Friday, October 30, 2015

Gold Coast Half Marathon - race wrap up

How hard is it to write a race report - for an event that seems to have occupied my thoughts for over a year ...?

Apologies in advance. This one will be long.

My half marathon journey started a full year ago.  One year ago I was following my friend Sonja and her journey to her first half marathon at Gold Coast. And that day - as she finished - I decided I was going to run again. It wasn't so much knowing she ran it - and how epically she did. It was seeing the work that had gone in. The sacrifice and commitment she had made, and how running was so much a part of her life. And THAT is what I wanted. And so I made a promise I would run again. And secretly, I promised I would run that half in 2015.

So plans were quietly made, and supporters were gathered. I know the people in my life who truly "get"running, and who understand the journey - and they were the people who knew. And babysteps were taken - that led to this day.

In the few days before Gold Coast I was a basket case. Every bit of "what if"that my mind could think of was gone through. It wasn't until my final training run - that I felt I could do this. I ran and I felt strong. I ran and I went through every step of my journey in my head. I ran and realised what an epic journey the training had been. And at the end of that run - I was ready for race day.

Our day began crazy early. Like stupid o'clock. 4am wakeup, dress and breakfast. And then I met these two beautiful girls in the lobby of our hotel.

How amazing was I to have these two ladies to run with? Rell on the left is my running coach, supporter and cheer leader. She wrote the plan that got me to my half and supported me in daily text messages. Love her dearly and so grateful she came to run with me all the way from country Victoria! Ness on the right just adores running! Her smile is infectious and she radiated joy the whole day. Beautiful lady that gave me peace on race morning!

Initial plan was to walk from our hotel and catch the light rail to the start ... but the shuttle bus pulled up at the door just as we hit the street! Perfect! And can I just say runners are awesome - the second we walked on the very full bus several men stood up and gave us their seats. Chivalry is not dead!
Next step was a pre race photo with the five30runners! One of my favourite parts of the day was allt he cries of Go five30! on the course and all the high fives! Truly got me home! Love the power of red!
My first 10 k was fast. Some pbs in there. I ran with the crowd and the atmosphere and absolutely soaked it in.
Turnaround tho was hard and that was when the mental race began.
The training had been done though and I ran every step.
And when the finish line opened up before me it was all I could focus on.

I actually thought it would be more emotional - finishing my first half. But instead of tears ... it just felt complete. Big huge goal accomplished.

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