Sunday, September 22, 2013

City to Surf marathon 2013

About a month ago I ran the Perth City to Surf marathon. Its a tough marathon, with 21.1km of flat and then 21.1km of hills to finish on. Now before all you non-Perth-ites say, Perth's flat, I challenge you to come and run the course! Its tough and the hills are very challenging (and I like hills remember).

I generally had a pretty good race build up and I was feeling very confident.... until 2 weeks out a mystery virus hit me and I was out for the count... literally. For two days I did not get out of bed (which is very unlike me).  This shook me up a little but there was nothing I could do about it!

Here I am on race morning, its 5.30am, and I am looking a little nervous! Unfortunately we had to jog 2.5km from the assembly point to the race start! Not happy about that! I signed up for 42.2km not 44.7km hahaha!
I had a great first half, hitting all my targets, but then had a real low patch over the next 8 - 10km. Jason was supporting me on his bike and at one stage I wanted to push him off it, steal it, bike home, crawl into bed and forget all about the marathon. But as with all races these bad thoughts pass and soon I was back feeling strong and in control again.

Here I am after 30km and happy to be on my way out of Kings Park and on the home stretch!
I had a great last 12km, and was passing lots and lots of people. Its a nice feeling finishing strong and although the middle patch of my race meant that I wasn't going to achieve my time target I was really happy to have a strong finish.

Around 5km from the finish line a blister on my toe burst.... just as I started to think about it my coach popped up - talk about perfect timing! He gave me a pep talk and before I knew it I had forgotten all about the blister and was concentrating on the runner ahead of me.... who I caught about 200m later!

I managed to tick off km 37/38 and 39 in a very good times, but kms 40 and 41 were always going to be killers. Over these 2km you have to head over what is commonly known as the three sisters.... these hills are'n massive, or steep but they just keep on going and going and when you have been running over three hours and 40km they seem like mountains!!

At the top of the three sisters you can see the ocean and its all down hill from there! Here I am around 1km from the finish.....
I really picked up the speed over the last km or so (just to get it finished and this photo says a lot I think!
Finally, after 3 hours 24 minutes (and 4 mins slower than target time) I crossed the line (my GPS has the race distance as 42.5km so a 4.48 min/km average - not too bad for the course that it was).

Here I am over the line and still running hahaha! I think I was worried that if I stopped I would seize up and not be able to move! If you blow the photo up you can see Jason in the crowd just under the time clock on the right hand side of the photo, he is wearing a bike helmet.
Once I finished the race and found Jason I started cramping up a bit and I was getting cold so Jason rode the bike home and I caught the shuttle bus back to town then had to walk 2km back to the start for the car! By this stage I was really cold, shivering and tired! I just really wanted to be home!

All in all it was a good day! I am pleased that I pushed through the mental demons in the middle of the race and its always a massive achievement finishing a marathon! I was very lucky to have Jason on bike support, which was made possible with Jason's parents being here to look after Ethan! Otherwise it would have been a very lonely day out there all on my own!

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