Yesterday, I got up before the crack of dawn to run my third 10k fun run.
After finishing the City2Surf in August, I didn’t run regularly for a good couple of months, so I knew I needed to sign up for a new race to stay motivated. And since I’ve been living in Sydney for barely a year and a half, I’m always keen to check out new little areas.
I found the Sun Run race and it looked perfect: 10k and the course meandered along the coast. I also managed to convince a friend from mothers group to join me. And by convince I mean, I asked her if she was keen to run it with me (and she immediately said yes).
The race started at 6.45am, and we needed to be there 30 minutes before. We live on the other side of the Harbour, so I ordered an uber at 5.15am and we collected my friend along the way. It was still dark (with a hint of first light) when we arrived at the race start in Dee Why. Despite the early rise (and admittedly not much sleep), we both were able to laugh when we asked ourselves, “Dee Whyyy was this such a great idea?!”
We checked in a bag at bag drop and ended up queuing for 20 minutes to use the toilets before the race. We scrambled to the start line with 5 minutes to go and joined the heard of people waiting for the starting gun. The race started by the beach, and the sun was rising over the ocean as we waited. Now I remember Dee Why we signed up.
It was already 23C (and 80% humidity) at 6.45am so I knew it was going to be a stinker. Sydney hasn’t slept well for a good week, and there’s no relief in sight (temperatures aren’t forecast to dip below the the early 20s at night in the next week).
I ran with my friend for the first hill before we agreed to meet at the end and went our separate ways. I ran the first 3 kilometres comfortably, even though I was already too hot after the first kilometre.
I’m not too sure if it’s because I had so little sleep, or because it was so hot, but the middle of the race kind of past in a blur. I passed the 5k mark at 32mins 30secs, and I was making great time. I realised that I had half a chance to finish under 65 minutes.
I kept pushing, however by the 7k mark I was pretty exhausted and the run was starting to feel like a chore. I looked at the scenery and the sandstone cliffs jutting out into the ocean. And then I made a conscience decision to not worry about the time, and to just enjoy the run and the scenery.
And with that, I enjoyed the final 3 kilometres and soaked up the support of spectators who were out the front of their houses with hoses. I even imagined my son in a few years time as I passed a couple of young brothers who had taken guard with a hose (and were wearing nothing but their boxer shorts and gum boots).
I ended up crossing the finish line with a new Personal Best! 1:06:23. Not too sure how I managed it in the heat, but the last 10k I ran was nearly 2 years ago so it’s nice to know that I’m getting faster.
I feel like I’ve tasted blood now, I’m so close to running 10k in under 65mins. Hopefully it won’t take me another 2 years to have another shot 🙂