April Fools Half Marathon

I ran a half marathon last weekend on the Sunshine Coast. I hadn’t ran the race before, but it will be on my race calendar next year.

Maybe it’s in my head, but I get the feeling every time I get off the ferry to the Sunshine Coast that everything slows down. The cars drive slower, the days last longer and most importantly, my mind stops racing. After less than 48 hours I felt like I’d had a week of R&R.

We stayed at an absolutely amazing place, and normally I would tell you about it, but I want to keep it all for myself…it’s that good. In fact, we already booked it for next year’s race!

Richele and I road over and met Allison for lunch at The Gumboot Restaurant in Roberts Creek. It was delicious and I highly recommend a visit. The restaurant staff moved slow but efficiently and had a permanent smile on their faces. You can’t beat the service you get from happy people. The food was fresh, plentiful and exactly what I needed after the hilly morning ride.

We had a relaxing hot tub once we got to our place…I was in heaven. I love hot tubs! My parents got a hot tub halfway through high school and I have some great memories…thanks Mom & Dad!

Some friends came over for a relaxing dinner filled with talk of running and triathlon (did you expect anything else?) and everyone was gone before 9pm to get a good night of rest in before the race. I didn’t even have to kick them out:).

My goals going into the race were ambitious, but based on a realistic assessment of what I thought possible after my recent 5k. My “A” goal was a sub 1:20, “B” goal sub 1:22 and “C” goal finish. My B goal would give me a personal best. My A goal seemed fast to me, but I committed to it and started telling people about it…this helps build commitment!

As the whistle went off and 400 competitors started the sun came out between the clouds and it started to turn into a beautiful day. Finally, the Sunshine Coast was living up to its name!

After a short uphill, it was was a quick downhill in the beginning and I clocked through the first 3km with a 3:35/avg. My goal pace for the race was a 3:45/avg, but I knew I needed some time in the bank because of the hills later on.

I came through 10km at 37:20 for a PB and well on pace. There were 4 runners ahead and I committed to passing them before the hills began at 14km.  I passed them at 13km and committed to not letting them pass me. This may sound competitive (and I am!) but I do it during races as a form of mental commitment to push to my max.

I saw one more guy in front of me that I thought I could pass before the finish. I worked hard up the hills from 14-17 kms and caught him at the crest of the hill. We ran together for 100m before I upped the cadence going down and again committed to not letting him pass me. His footsteps were close behind so I kept the intensity high all the way down the hill and trashed my legs. I was prepared to bring out some of the Andrew animality that I’ve seen him pull out at the end of races that impresses me, but thankfully didn’t need to.

As I made the final turn I saw the clock hit 1:20 and I knew I’d missed my A goal…but I was still very happy with my performance…a 2 min PB!

Stats: 1:20:09, 11th overall, 5th age group.

Thanks everyone for a memory filled weekend!

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