Sunday saw me up at 4.30am in time to stuff some porridge into my mouth and get ready to catch the ferry over to Devonport where my race was starting from. I was feeling okay, with a surprising lack of nerves, which was interesting for me. I don’t know if it’s because I am still tired from all the different stressors over the past few months or if my mojo has somewhat dwindled for races. I must admit to being a bit niggly in my head about the pulled hamstring and whether it would hold up.
I didn’t really have time to warm up. It was a coolish morning so me and a friend (who had come up to Auckland to run the same race) sat in the ferry terminal for a while so we wouldn’t get too cold while waiting for our start time. When we finally made our way to the start area we had about half an hour to go which I figured was plenty time to go to the loo and leave my gear bag at the bag drop. How wrong I was! Whether it was because there were not enough port-a-loos or whether it was because everyone was taking longer than usual, it took 20 mins for me to even reach the front of the queue! So what transpired was a rushed me trying to get to the start line. Perhaps the fact that I only made it to the sign that said “HELP” should have been a warning.
The horn went off and we didn’t move, and when we finally did we shuffled along to the start line. I then spent the first 8kms trying to get into a rhythm. This is what happens when you start at the back of a 7000 strong field! On top of that, things started hurting, first the back of my knee, then my shin, then my glute, then my shin…..
I forced myself to enjoy the view when we reached the top of the harbour bridge, but it was bittersweet. I was not enjoying myself….
The last 3kms felt like a bad session at the dentist. In my mind I may as well have been running the marathon. I had no energy left, I felt like walking, I couldn’t even summon up my classic sprint (for me) finish. When the official photos came out today, you can see my miserable face loud and clear. I have no idea why it went like this, something needs fixing and that something is my head.
However there were some positives…I ran the half in 2:02:55 which I thought was quite good considering the pulled hamstring a short while back. And it made me realise that I was not enjoying the races as much as just running which led me to the decision that next long race I do here in NZ, I will do for a worthy cause or charity. Now to decide what, who or which 🙂