Getting up at before 5.00am on a Sunday morning is never a good thing, but when it’s to start your journey to the start line of a long run it’s even worse. We had managed to get a team of nine together to take part in the Auckland Half Marathon which is a hilly and challenging course, mingled with some stunning scenery in places. Jake decided that being so young and fit he would run his first full marathon (the exuberance of youth!) with only a few training runs under his belt. Even though it was still dark when we all met at the ferry terminal, we were starting to feel part of the thousands of runners who were making their way to the start line in Devenport on the north shore.
Above you can see the masses up people at the CBD ferry terminal just after 5am, we even got to talk to quite a few party people who hadn’t gone to bed yet.
Below the importance of pre-race carbo-loading and hydration can be seen in the Devenport ferry terminal.
Finally the sun rose and it was a perfect running day. The start was very crowded and we had to wait quite near the back of all the waiting runners and 7 minutes after the official start gun, we all crossed the start line and headed off towards Takapuna.
Most of us had run the half marathon once or twice before, but we all found that the course was slightly longer and harder than we remembered, and much more hilly. The run up onto the harbour bridge at the 16km mark was particularly punishing. A big thanks to Craig who had obviously decided not to run his fastest and spent his race running forwards and backwards between us, telling us to breathe, shake our arms and lift our knees up. He also captured some very unflattering photos as well which are not to seen anywhere here.
We all finished despite the heat and the times are below. A particular “well done” goes out to Jake for his marathon time of 4 hours……a top effort.
Obviously the first thing we all did after finishing a grueling 21km run was form a circle and see how many push-ups we could do. Which, as it turned out, wasn’t many at all. Then it was off to the Steinlager tent at 9.30am for a bit of welcome re-hydration with bean bags also provided.
Well done all those who took part and abstained from late nights and Sauvignon blanc for the week leading up to the race, it was worth it…….I think.
See you all again at the start line next year.