Monday, June 30, 2008

Woodford 2 Glenbrook - 2 years in a row!

I wasn't going to do this race. I was going to pike. But someone asked me what kind of 'streak' it was to only do it once. So I put in a last second entry and turned up, underprepared and tired.

The start was gorgeous. A sunny day, fabulous organisation and good friends to while away the time with while waiting for the start. I met some new people and chatted to old friends.

It was warm enough to run in a singlet and shorts right from the start and I wore my VFF flows again, as they have served me well lately. My trusty handheld waterbottle, with a gel and couple of lollies, and I was good to go. Trotted along nicely for about 1km before my first mishap....

I managed to drop my gel. Right in the centre of the road. I considered leaving it, but I know that this course has only water for competitors and I don't go well for 3 odd hours on water only.

Waiting for the entire field to run by before I could go to collect it was frustrating, but thankfully, no one stepped on it.

I had to put in a decent downhill 'sprint' to catch up to where I was previously and ran for quite a while with Carmen, who was looking strong. Carmen ran ahead at one point, and I didn't see her again, she was good on the hills.

Today seemed to be the day for kicking my toes. Normally I don't do this often, as I've learned to be more careful when only wearing a thin piece of rubber on my feet. Today I was hopeless! I must have kicked rocks twice every km! This is extremely painful and means I'm not paying attention. Hindsight tells me I was just too tired for those shoes on that course on that day.

However, I began chatting with a local who was doing her first trail run and we were talking kids, work and running when suddenly a large rock jumped up out of the trail and bit me hard. I stumbled, hoping to right myself, but alas.... I went down hard.

My left knee smashed into the rocks, as did my right hand. It hurt enough to shock me and I couldn't get up. The lady I was running eventually ran on, after I assured her I'd be ok with a little sit down. I sat for a while, inspected the damage and let out a little whimper when I thought of the Gold Coast marathon in a weeks time. Not to mention the rip in my favourite tights!

Another runner stopped shortly after and offered to help me up, for which I was grateful. I started walking, realising that the notion of negative split, even in this downhill race, was out of the question.

I walked to the next aid station, where I put a bit of water on my hand and cleaned up a little and resumed jogging. I managed to catch up to quite a few people for a few km, but then the stiffness set in and I went back to walk/jog for the last 5-6km.

Crossing the line at the end was disappointing. Last year I ran 2.55 and this year though I could do about 2.45. My finish time was 3.10. I went to the first aid tent and got my knee and hand seen to before hobbling out to get a coffee.

The end of the day was lovely, sharing lunch with a good friend and some new faces, before heading home to the kids.

Not a great day for running, but a great day to just tough it out and finish what I started.

Some Bling

Saturday night was the Sydney Marathon Clinic presentation dinner. I took all the kids along for the ride and they enjoyed the night. The food was terrific and the MC Mike O'Mara kept the night rolling along with his funny stories and jokes.

I had a blast. For the first time ever, I actually picked up some awards. I have always been the 'slow, unco kid' who didn't get picked for anything. Tonight I got picked for a couple of things :)

First in my age group (30-39) for the Long Series runs. Second overall in the Long Series handicap competition. I also received a nice medallion for running my first marathon, and another for running my first ultra marathon. And the coveted prize..... the "I did the flamin' lot" tshirt.

It was worth the work, the effort and the getting up early to run long races when I wanted to quit.

I should point out too that both my daughters did very well.

Alana was 2nd in her age group (under 15's) for the 5km run series and also 2nd overall for the handicap competition for that distance. Sara (who is only 13) scored a 1st place trophy in her age group (under 20's) for the 10k series. She also holds the race record for this distance for junior female runners.

Monday, June 16, 2008


The whole universe revolves around seasons. Animals and plants follow the cycles of life. Your body knows that everything has its time and place.

The spirit has its seasons too. Spring for rebirth, Summer for exploration and growth, Autumn for harvesting, and Winter for introspection and rest.

Live in the season today.

Friday, June 13, 2008

The Journey

A student goes to a sensei to learn Running Barefoot.

She asks, "Sensei, how long will it take for me to master Running Barefoot?"

The sensei replies "It will take 5 years."

The student counters "What if I work twice as hard?"

"Then it will take 10 years", The sensei says, "because your focus is on the end, not on the process of learning."