Toontjie 4km - 14 October 2017

Toontjie 4km - 14 October 2017
Alfie's first medal

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Outsurance Gun Run Half Marathon 2014 - 12 October 2014

Kilometre 5 - Still feeling good!

Steve's phone alarm clock got me out of bed at 4:45am in the dark to get ready for the Half Marathon.  It wasn't until it started getting light that I noticed how misty it was.

Standing in the start enclosure at about 6:10am, I looked up to see not a lot of the Green Point Stadium in front of me.  "Oh well, it will soon clear," I thought, as I stood with several thousands of other runners waiting for the 6:30 start.

The Gun Run is always started by the firing of a cannon, and this year was no exception.  It made the air around us vibrate before we even heard it go off!  Then we jumped - and were off!

Kilometre 8

We all had chips, which were started with the gun but it took a while to get over the starting line.

Then, I discovered that my Garmin hadn't yet picked up my location, no doubt due to the heavy mist as much as to the thousands of other runners tightly packed around me.  I did get it started eventually, but by that time I had decided not to worry about it and run by feel. I would be given a chip time anyway, and I could work out the adjustment necessary to get an accurate actual time later.

There were over 5000 half marathon runners (5394 actually) taking part, and the route was very congested for the first 4 or 5 kilometres.

It didn't help, either, that there was the first turn-around point just 3km out and the lead runners were struggling to run back through the crowds.  Mmm, think that part of the route needs to be improved next year!

The Home Straight!
I had warmed up now and was starting to speed up just very slightly with each kilometre - ideal really, as I had decided I wanted to run the first third slow, the second third on pace (ha ha, get real!) and the last third fast (now, that is a joke!) I had already decided it wasn't really worth checking my time but just checked the pace every ten minutes or so, and I could see that I was definitely speeding up naturally with each kilometre I was running.

We carried on running around the Waterfront, around Dock Road and up back into Sea Point, where I saw Steve again, having passed near where we had started!  Then, off up the Main Road of Sea Point where I discovered I was catching up with the 2:30 pacers.  Wow!  I couldn't believe it.  I was running at a nice, comfortable pace now, but wasn't looking forward to the hill that was to come at around 12k.  I actually passed the 2:30 pacers then, and gradually pulled away from them.

100 more metres to go!
We turned off the Main Road and ran up Kloof Road, which went on and on.  I am so glad I had been practising hills by running up the huge B'bos hill every few weeks!  I jogged and walked up it, but it really didn't feel as bad as I had thought it would, and we ran over the top of the hill and levelled out for a while alongside the mountain.  It had been very misty all the way, but now we were up in the clouds proper!  When you run a long run, sometimes your mind plays tricks on you, and I couldn't remember from that point on whether the 2:30 pacers had passed me or whether I was still in front of them.  I really didn't know.

Eventually, we started to come back down again but the kilometres were starting to feel rather more difficult now.  It certainly didn't help not being able to see much.  But I kept going at quite a pace now as we were on the descent at this point and I needed to make up some time.  Only a few more kilometres!  Only!  Ha!  I still wasn't checking my time because I was working too hard and it didn't seem that important.  "It would be what it would be," as Steve was always saying to me!

Eventually, we reached the 21km marker, although I still couldn't see the Finish!  It was that misty!  I was struggling now and sneaking in tiny walks now and again, but there it was - at last - the Finish. I hadn't any idea of what time I passed over the line at but when I finally stopped running I checked my watch it was so annoying because it told me first of all that I had run a 5k PB, then it told me that I had run a 10k PB, and then it told me I had run the furthest I had run (with that watch) and I still didn't know how long it had taken me!

Focussed on finishing!

 When I was able to check my chip time later, it told me my time was 2:20 something.  Later, when I worked out my time properly, I ran 2:18:12 -  my best half marathon time ever!  Real pleased with that.

Good weather to run in, as not too windy, and quite cool, but the mist was rather damp!  And it was hard not being able to see much!  Scenery?  What scenery?  I'm sure there was some out there somewhere but I didn't see it!

Just waiting for the official pics to come out now!  And, no, I didn't care what I looked like at that time!

Overall position: 3908/5394
Gender position: 1372/2287
Age Category Position: 77/201
Age Position: 4/13

A very enjoyable run.  One which I had worked hard for, and the training, weather, conditions, etc. all came right for once!

Thank you to my lovely Hubs, who got me there on time, and supported me!

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