This hasn’t happened to me for a while now so I’m very happy. Maybe it was the chocolate cake I had the night before that did the trick…?
The weather was perfect and it was never too cold and never too warm. There was quite a big field and also a lot of runners for the 10km race. We ran two laps and were joined by the 10km runners the first lap.
Waiting for the start.
The start was without incident even though we were a bit crowded for the first km or two. I turned 47 on Saturday and wondered up to what age I would be able to do this. I saw this guy running in the 75 – 80 years age group and I hope I can still run like that when I get to 75.
Age group 75 - 80...hope I'll do the same one day.
The route went through the suburbs of Randburg and followed some quiet and very pleasant roads. I was feeling very good and could feel the trail running is making me strong on the hills. I think if managed properly the trail and road running could form a very good balance. My plans include both road and trail for at least the next three years.
Perfect morning in the streets of Randburg.
Years ago when I was running at my best, I used to get into my rhythm after about 7km. Yesterday this happened at about 6km and this made me very happy. I could feel something of the runner I was 13 years ago somewhere inside. The hard work is starting to pay off. Somewhere I passed a lady wearing sandals that were basically the soles with some string to keep them on her feet. Probably someone that wants to run barefoot but don’t have the feet to run on tarmac…?
As I went along I saw my old friend Hazel. We were passing each other all the time. I passed her on the hills and she would pass me on the down hills. Hazel is a running legend in South Africa. Since I’ve known her she’s won numerous veteran, masters and now grand master categories in races of all distances up to 100 milers. I definitely consider her as one of my running gurus, as referred to by Meg in this post.
Hazel showing off her Comrades green (10) and double green (20) numbers. She completed her 23rd Comrades Marathon in 10 hours this year.
The route was undulating but never really difficult. Some hills were tougher than others, but I was feeling better and better all the time. I pushed a lot harder during the second half and knew the wheels wouldn’t come off before the finish. I was having a perfect run!
I was feeling great on the hills…
…on the down hills…
…and on the flats!
I reached 17km feeling like superman himself!
Just before 18km I waited for Hazel again and we continued together until the end. We chatted about recent races we’ve done and her great Comrades this year. I was happy. Running was good and I thought about how much this wonderful sport means to me.
Here comes Hazel!
The finish came soon and I couldn’t help to find it a bit ironic that KFC was the main sponsor of the race. Well, no matter how unhealthy just about all KFC might be, they sponsored a very nice race. I finished feeling fantastic and ready to take on the tough training I’ve got planned for the next few weeks.
Have a wonderful week everyone!