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SINCE WE LAST TOUCHED BASE…..

July 26, 2013

First of all I apologise for the lack of an update in recent months. It certainly hasn’t been for lack of interest on my part, for blogging and documenting the journey is something I am committed to. A combination of factors including work and football duties have taken a strain on my time, but the good news is that I’ve found time to provide a little update.

The day before Run For A Reason in Perth, I decided to lodge an entry into my local event, the Rocky River Run based around the Fitzroy River in Rockhampton (where I have been based for some time). Thankfully my physical conditioning at the time was good enough to use the 10km event as a virtual training run for the City2South a fortnight later in Brisbane. The run itself was comfortable and utilised much of a training route that I tended to use. Of course there were some difficulties in terms of traffic, with the 10km runners on the course at the same time as many of the half marathon competitors were on the course (a group which I may end up joining next year, fingers and toes crossed!). It was also a mixed terrain run, with about a kilometre being conducted on grass which thankfully had recovered from flooding at the start of the year although a little rain during the week had softened the surface considerably. In the end, breaking 48 minutes was something I didn’t anticipate but certainly it’s a time I will take with happiness. Unfortunately there is now a date clash for 2014 between the local event and the run in Perth, but I’m sure there are other events in Perth such as their City2Surf that I can attend next year.

Fast forward a couple of weeks, and it was a short hop to Brisbane for the inaugural City2South. Conducted by the organisers of the City2Surf in Sydney and the City2Sea in Melbourne, this course has been positively received by the runners with multiple crossings of the Brisbane River, utilisation of part of the the 1982 Commonwealth Games Marathon and the ascent of Highgate Hill to commence the final section of the event. Parts of the campus of the University of Queensland were also included, with the finish coming after a rare downhill section.

Sadly whilst I finished the run in a time well under the goal that I had set for myself many months ago, the 1:16 it had taken to cover the course was outside shorter term expectations. Part of this was because of an upper leg injury suffered the previous day during a football match, an injury that I didn’t discover until hours before the start. Fortunately I was able to improvise and strap the part to an extent, but if this wasn’t the inaugural running of the event my participation would not eventuate. But having invested training time and finances to make the start line there was no point in withdrawing on the hours before the start.

The main positive from the run was that I was able to complete the course despite the ailments without stopping to walk. Finishing the course will give me the confidence that I will be able to comfortably cover the same journey in Sydney in a fortnight’s time. It also means that I can say I was just one of over 6600 that made history by completing the first event ever, and that I will definitely return in 2014 for the sequel. One thing is for certain; there will be more than 6600 in the throng next year based on the praise of the course and the organisation on social media.

A reminder of the inaugural finish.

A reminder of the inaugural finish.

And then there was seeing Kevin Michael Rudd in the flesh. Yes I can say that I well and truly beat him across the line, his journey I’m sure was punctuated by constantly pressing the flesh like many politicians do. With the press surrounding his appearance at the finish line, Mr Rudd mentioned something about a preference for fewer hills along the route. Whilst I initially disagreed with the sentiment, figuring he was just referring to the course, little did I know that this may have been a cryptic reference to his return to power in governing Australia which he did a matter of a few weeks later. Maybe I should have approached him claiming I was the former Governor General of the country, for my namesake filled that role during the Howard years.

It’s time to focus on the future rather than the past, and there are just 16 days at the time of writing before the City2Surf, which was the main reason why I wanted to take part in these runs in the first place. Everything thankfully has been booked well in advance, meaning I can plan beyond this run both in entering events and booking accommodation and travel for the opening Ashes test in Brisbane a week after my final planned event for the year. Just what event I will be running on the weekend of the 17th of November is yet to be determined, so stay tuned to find out whether I’m headed to Melbourne or further south to Hobart. As for now, it’s back out on the road to start wearing in my new running shoes.

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