Pleased With Myself

I’ve been freaking myself out ever so slightly, because the annual City to Surf 14km (8.6 miles) road race takes place in 5 weeks and I haven’t trained. I mean, okay, yes, I’ve been going out a couple of times a week for a run after work but I’m running with a colleague who’s just a beginner so we’ve been going R-E-A-L-L-Y-S-L-O-W-L-Y and taking walk/stretch breaks more frequently than I would otherwise have done had I not had her as an excuse to be lazy.

The problem is that as soon as I run on ahead at my normal pace she stops, so I’ve been trying to encourage her to improve by staying by her side. And she has made real progress. But now I need to push myself, which means leaving her behind.

Last year I did pretty well and managed to get round in under the ‘green’ qualifying time, which means I get to start in a smaller, less packed group this year. Ideally I’d like to improve my time, obviously, but I may have to get realistic about that, given how easy I’ve been on my training.

Anyway, it was another gloriously sunny Winter’s day here in Sydney on Saturday so I decided to make the most of it with a longish run – mainly to see how desperate my situation really is.

I got my lycra and Asics trainers on, put my iPhone and keys in my ISP belt*, slapped on some sunscreen and a cap, grabbed a bottle of Gatorade, and trotted off, intending to run to the Opera House and back – a distance of about 3.5kms (a little over 2 miles) each way.

When I got to the Opera House I ran up the steps (yes, exactly like Rocky) and walked around for a minute or two, enjoying the sunshine and the view, and getting my breath back. Then I decided I felt okay and could carry on, so off I plodded into the Botanical Gardens. I made it around the gardens, along the path by the water’s edge, past Mrs Macquarie’s Chair and Andrew Boy Charlton pool, through Woolloomooloo and all the way past Harry’s Cafe De Wheels to HMAS Kuttabul, the Navy station.

And if you think I’ve made up those place names, just look at the map:

Then I finished my Gatorade, did a bit of stretching and started back. Apparently, according to Google Earth maps, the total distance was approximately 12kms (7.5 miles).

I felt a little sleepy for the rest of the afternoon when I got home, but the yoga and Cod Liver Oil capsules must really be helping: my leg muscles and joints don’t ache at all.

Although my left bicep does, for some reason. Go figure.

Anyway, it was a really good day.

*Yeah, when people tell you that you don’t need any special gear for running, except trainers, they’re lying.

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16 Responses to Pleased With Myself

  1. modestypress says:

    Spectators will be even more impressed when you complete the race with your colleague chained to you, or perhaps carrying her in your arms.

  2. so, were you carrying your gatorade bottle in your left hand? That could account for the bicep.

    Congratulations on your run. Sometimes that long slow sort of training can really put a great base under you. I’ll bet you do even better in the City to Surf.

  3. azahar says:

    Yay! Well done! 🙂

  4. Rocky ran up the steps of the Sydney Opera House? And to think, I’ve avoided seeing that film all these years.

    • Norwichrocks says:

      See what you’re missing out on? ‘Out of Africa’ was filmed in the Botanical Gardens, too.

      Sort of.

  5. Running right past my old work place in the Botanic Gardens. I had fun going through that Google map 🙂

  6. doctordi says:

    Well done, Woo. I love the C2S, but am out this year for obvious reasons… and walking it with the bump would just ENRAGE me in the crowds. I think in the interests of your own training needs, you’ll have to leave your friend eating your dust and hope it inspires her to pick it up, otherwise neither of you is getting the most out of running together in the first place. This is why I run by myself.

    • Norwichrocks says:

      agreed, on both counts (running/walking in crowds with bump, and leaving friend for dust)… although, having said all this, I then went for a run with one of the guys on Monday and he left me for dust… so that deflated my pretensions again nicely 😉

  7. sledpress says:

    When people say you don’t need special gear for any sport, they’re blowing smoke.

    Well, we could cup water in our bare hands and garden with sharp rocks too. But I prefer the gizmos of human ingenuity.

    • Norwichrocks says:

      Ha! “cup water in our bare hands and garden with sharp rocks” *chortle*

      Yep, I’m with you – bring on the comfort-enhancing, effort-lessening gear!

  8. OmbudsBen says:

    Back in the pleistocene era of distance running, I knew people who preferred what they called LSD. No no, no tripping on their trips, They went for Long Slow Distances.

    So taking it easy might be good for the stamina. Unfortunately for me, my cross-country coach preferred interval training. The SOB. A mixed medley of quarter mile dashes, half miles, and 3/4 miles. And him with a stopwatch in his hands.

    I tried to do it in college once, to get ready for a race. After a few quarter mile runs I stopped, panting and red-faced, and asked myself, WTF am I doing this for?

    I’ve just gone for runs ever since, relying on hill work for that little extra effort.

    I’ll bet you do great!

  9. Norwichrocks says:

    You know, I think there are basically two types of runners, the ones who can just keep on going and the ones who can go fast. I’m the former. Definitely.

    But yes, hill work is certainly something I need to add in to the mix over the next few weeks because there are a couple of killers on the actual route.

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