So today I did the City2South 14km run in Brisbane.
I was always going to do it - it was such an enjoyable event last year that as soon as it finished, I said out loud that I'd be doing it again in 2014. Because of this, it was always on my actual 2014 run list 'The List' (why haven't I burnt that thing yet??)
As you can probably imagine, if you've been following my story, I've lost a bit of my runners mojo. I'm in the middle of another post about that, all about the Gold Coast Marathon. So much more to say on that. But in a nutshell, I have lost it, as well as now being so under confident with running. My last few runs haven't gone great, and the latest one (#trainwreckrun) managed to
destroy almost the last iota of self confidence I had left.
Usually I'd have the course map picture on my desk at work leading up to an event, I'd be preparing for it and obviously have signed up. But it got to yesterday morning, and I'd done none of the above. I still wasn't sure whether I should do it. I was beside myself nervous about the prospect, and I
knew that it was such a risk to run - it could make or completely break my runners confidence.
At the very last minute yesterday, (as in at 11:59am when registrations closed at 12:00pm!), I signed up.
I realised I did want to do it. I was terrified but sometimes you have to push through the fear and just be brave, otherwise you won't move forward.
|Picking up my race pack|
Over the course of yesterday, I worked some things out. It's like I was starting to remember why I ran. Because amidst the runners stress of late, I forgot.
I went to pick up my race pack, and walking through the mini health and fitness expo they had set up, I started getting excited. I also had some good friends give good advice. And then one of them sent me this:
It blew my mind. This is just part of a longer message that has such insight into me at the moment. I have permission to publish it :) I realised she was right. If I had any chance of
getting through this little runner lull I've been in, I needed to enjoy today. Ignore times, ignore everyone around me, and just REMEMBER WHY I RUN.
I decided to go out and have fun. Relax, breathe, take it as it came, and avoid all police. ;)
I had a bit of stress when I hopped in the car and thought I'd better check where the start line was, and realised I had it completely wrong! That's what happens when you only sign up the day before, Kate! You'd think it would be obvious, and that "City 2 South" would probably start in the city, right? Uh, yeah I thought it started at West End where the finish line was. My little blonde moment made me a bit worried about making it on time, but I got into the city and parked.
I started walking to the start line, and about 5 cars in front of me, I noticed something on the road, in between 2 other parked cars. There was a pair of what I thought were running knife. Like a large chopping knife.
|Collecting discarded jumpers for the homeless!|
Our cars (and this weird little scene) were alongside a bit of a dodgy park. One of those parks that you would never walk through at night. (For those locals, it was Wickham Park). It just seemed really odd, and I felt I needed to report it. There was no obvious blood on the knife, but I didn't stop to check it out properly either. The whole thing just seemed weird. You never know what information can help. I've had two friends in the past year who saw stuff that looked out of place, didn't want to be over the top but ended up speaking up, and one of the clues ended up being a part of a murder and one a suicide, so I realise it's worth saying something, just in case.
So while I walked to the start line, I rang Crimestoppers to report it - besides, the knife needed to be removed! I didn't realise the phone call would be so lengthy though! They were still asking questions and information from me as I was in the start chute, while I was warming up! As the group shuffled forward, I told them I was about to start running and they let me go.. ;)
And we went through the start banner, and it was on! I wrote 'Enjoy' on my hand to remind me of my intentions at all times.
And my aim worked :)
I stopped caring about those around me, about my pace or my time, and just ran because I enjoyed the experience. Despite where I am with things, I knew it was more important today to focus on my mind rather than on my actual running. I'll be honest, it did help that this was also an encouraged walking event, so there were hundreds of people behind me and I didn't have that pressure of bringing up the rear. As an extra comfort, the 5km event joined in with ours for the last few km's, and because they started about 1.5 hours after we did, I had most of that event behind me too. So I blended in. This was a huge comfort. That's all I ever want. I don't want to be surrounded by flashing lights and gawked at.
|The start line|
My O pain and back pain was pretty bad today. My O pain was stabbing me last night... :( which wasn't a good start. Around 2km's in, the pain started and started spreading. I decided that if it got too bad, that I would stop. It was such an amazing thought, for me to give myself permission to do that and to be ok with it. As much as the #trainwreckrun was awful, the fact that I've now stopped running once has sort of given me permission to actually listen to my running body, for the first time ever.
Anyway.....! I kept going and really there's not much to write home about, as it was just good! No issues, no panic, no police fixated on me. Brisbane's version of Heartbreak Hill was pretty tough going but I pushed up it. I did the event alone but saw friends before, during (like Sarie!) and after and had an Awesome Runner call out to me to cheer me on. It was such a lovely crowd. I enjoyed everything I ran past, I even went through the mist tent! I've been too scared to try it out before, in case it mucks
up my breathing. But I relaxed myself and ran through, and it was fun!
As much as today was about relaxing and enjoying and looking after myself, I also used the opportunity to test out a few things before the big Gold Coast event. I now know for sure that I need to change shoes for the GCM - I worked a lot of things out today. I also thought I had my GCM food picked out but I got some new stuff from the expo yesterday and tried it out today. It was actually really good! I'll talk more about my run nutrition plan in another post. But the food went well. I also tried out Gatorade while running. I usually stick to water, but Marathon School have encouraged us to use the Endura that they'll have at the GCM, so I thought I should test this out...it wasn't Endura, but it was a sports drink. I've done it before during a run and for memory it didn't sit well with me. I couldn't remember why...I had maybe 2 small cups on the run and downed a full one when I finished, as an experiment. More on that soon...
The whole run was so well organised and I remember this now from last year. I am sure it's the most organised event I've been a part of, and I've heard others say the same. Fairfax Events (I believe it is), take a bow! Absolutely tops - this event should be a benchmark for
|One of the Westpac zones. So impressed.|
Anyway enough about corporate stuff! Back to the end
|Tanya, me and Mel|
The last 500m was so much fun...I was coming down that hill and running towards this awesome scene of the finish line, the finish site with heaps of activity, people lining the street and just this cool atmosphere. As I got closer I saw 2 friends on the side of the road and they started cheering. I high 5'd them and got some speed up, then another guy near them was holding a sign saying "free high 5's" :) So I high 5'd him. People were cheering and it was just so much fun and motivating that I went nuts (nuts for me!) and sprinted to the end. I started getting breathing anxiety so it is very lucky that it was the end of the run!
I went through the finish line and got my medal. And suddenly I realised what I had just done - it just hit me. I'd found my 'happy run' again. I haven't had it for a very long time. And I signed up and showed up despite my no confidence. I enjoyed the whole thing and did it well. What I felt today was why I like running! I actually started to cry a bit! I don't know that I've ever done that at a finish line before :) (#trainwreckrun doesn't count). :)
I chatted to some friends I saw and then wandered over to the Westpac tent to hang out before my friends Mel and Tanya finished their 5km. I wanted to cheer them over the line.
because of this!) :( And the lovely thing was waiting outside the portaloos as soon as I got out.
We went back to the Westpac tent and I lay in a beanbag for a while - my pain was back, post race seizing DOMS type pain was there, and I was still not feeling 100%. I accepted Mel and David's offer of a lift to my car whereas usually I would have said I was fine. I really needed that lift!
I've spent the rest of the day lying down (and in the bathroom!) and I now feel a lot better. I'm off to investigate things a bit further this week. But the sick part, I believe that was the Gatorade - I remember now that that's what happened to me last time! I'm so glad I tested it today on this event. I might test out Endura but I think I am just going to stick to water. There's no way I want to feel like I did today at the GCM or ever again for that matter.
So yes! That is my little run report! I'm so glad I did it. It reminded of what I'm capable of
and about how much positive thinking influences what we do. I got caught up in so much stress and worry and it's been clouding my judgement.
I found my lost running mojo today :)