"I'd rather be seen on my bicycle than on a park run" - Quote from the dark side

Monday, 28 March 2011

2011 Jackie Gibson Half Marathon Race Report

Yesterday I ran the Jackie Gibson Half Marathon in the Southern parts of Johannesburg. This is a great race with a full marathon as well. It is known as one of the tougher races in Gauteng with lots of testing hills. Luckily most of the bad hills are in the first part of the race. Many runners use this race as hill training for the Comrades.

After my tough run at the Om Die Dam 50km the previous weekend I was sure to take things very easy at this race. Having said that, I still had it in my mind to maybe do the full marathon and not only the half. However, I woke up to the sound of rain and decided it was a good day for a half marathon.

The race venue is only about 10km from my home and I arrived with plenty of time to do the usual rituals. It was misty with some fine rain, but by the time we started (6:30) it was wet and misty only and we had no rain during the race.

As I mentioned above the first part of this race is tough and testing. Right from the start there are some long and steep hills and it is wise to take it easy for the first 13km of the half marathon.

Some tough hills right from the start…


The race goes through Mondeor, the suburb where I grew up and where my parents still live in the same house today.

In the 1980’s these roads were my training grounds…


The weather was great and I’m sure the runners in the full marathon was grateful for the cloudy and cool conditions. The hills did make me sweat though…


I ran very comfortably and was happy that I didn’t feel any discomfort or tiredness from the previous week’s 50km. I was very happy as I confirmed my strength on the hills. I also confirmed again that I suck at downhill running. Luckily this year is an up Comrades…J!

I took the photo below just for Sandal Girl (Staci). A barefoot runner just for you! The area on the right is part of the nature reserve where I do most of my trail training.


After a nice, long downhill there was another steep tester to take us to 14km. Then it is gradually down and even to just before 19km. The last 2km is up and many runners find this tough. This is not an easy finish for any race and the marathon runners didn’t enjoy this at all.

One last tester.

Gradual climb the last 2km

I ran comfortably the whole way and never pushed very hard. I finished in 02:19 which is good for me a week after a very difficult 50km race. I was still feeling strong at the end and recovered almost immediately. I feel this was a good hilly training run.

Some loot…


…and the medal.


A happy week to you all. Keep it going!

33 comments:

Kate said...

What a cool medal!

Nice job, Johann. That looks like a challenging race with all those hills. Your training is going so well. I bet it was pretty neat to run on your home territory. Glad this race went well.

Have a great week!

Laura said...

Nice job especially after last week's 50km. You are probably one of the few I have heard that is happy Comrades is UP this year. :)

Jennifer said...

Proud of you Johann for getting back at it so fast and with fine form! Nice baling for what looks and sounds like a hard race. I love your attitude! Cheers, have a great week!

HappyTrails said...

Very nice recovery from a tough one last week. Barefoot running on pavement - ouch! Hope you have a great week Johann!!

Lisa said...

Nice job on a tough course!

The Turtle said...

Great job on your run! I love the medal.

I think I need some hills like that to get me in shape.

Paige (Two Runners And A Brown Dog) said...

Congrats!!!! That is one beautiful medal!

Lauren said...

Nice medal. Congratulations. How fun to run through the town you grew up. I would love to do that. I so hate uphill finishes.
Really enjoyed the pics :)

misszippy said...

How fun to race in your old stomping grounds! Looked like a tough course. Great job one week post-ultra!

Christi said...

Congrats on a great training run/race!

The Runner said...

Nice medal!

tahoegirl said...

Yay for pharmacy sponsors. Cool medal. Those hills make me tired. :o)

Heather said...

Nice job! That's a great looking medal. Sounds like the course had lots of challenging hills, great for a training run! glad to hear you had a quick recovery.

Julie said...

ooooohhh...I like the medal! I never do good on hills...which is probably why our coach has so many hilly runs scheduled this year.

Great job!!

Marlene said...

Great job, Johann! Congrats on finishing a strong race and sticking to the plan. I love that you always take pictures during your races. I did that on Sunday for a change and it is easier said than done!

Big Daddy Diesel said...

You are a racing machine, congrats

Char said...

A 2k climb at the end of a marathon?!! Sometimes I think that route planners are non-runners. Congrats on finishing the half and I agree with everyone else - that medal is great.

Emz said...

seriously - who puts in a climb at the end?! ugggg.

awesome job!

awesome medal!!

lindsay said...

i am definitely better at downhills vs uphills! any uphill at the end of a race is not friendly to me :)

congrats on your race! love the medal. how is the friendship flag coming along?

ajh said...

I love the medal. It sounds like a tough half even though that is a short distance for you. Good job.

Anne said...

What a great medal! You did amazing...I can't believe you ran 50K last weekend and then attacked those hills :)

Why said...

Wow.. that is some great stuff. 50K then followed with this performance. Gritty work. I like the recap.

Gotta Run,
Mike
www.facebook.com/WhyMarathon
www.WhyMarathon.com

ultra collie said...

is that that tarmac stuff you're running on johann?? well done regardless!

Staci said...

Glad to see that you did the half. Well done on a good run. The weather definitely suited my friends that did the marathon. Nice medal and goodie bag. See you Sunday.

Amy said...

Nice medal! So glad to hear it went well for you after the tough time you had last week... although with that course it wasn't a walk in the park, either, was it?

Staci said...

I forgot to say Thanks for the picture of the barefoot runner - you're a great spotter. Glad to see that there are more of 'us' out there.

Abby @ Have Dental Floss, Will Travel said...

Nice work - sounds like you nailed the race. And I love the unique medal!

Molly said...

great job one week out from your last race! love the medal.

and I love your Foto Friday post! : ) have a great week!

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

Amazing! You definitely have built up some major stamina--gorgeous scenery--I don't think I would tire of running if I had all of that!!

Bethany + Ryan said...

nice job! You're an animal! btw, i've been using lip balm lately form trader joe's called "Trader Johann." It always makes me think of you. My sister and her family are leaving for SA in 10 days! They are staying for 1 month

Small Town Runner said...

Oh my!!! My feet would be CHEWED UP!! lol...I am so glad there are people crazier than I am out there =D

Nice work, Johann!

Black Knight said...

I would come to SA to get that springbok!!!
Great loot.
Please accept the usual "good job"!!!!

The Green Girl said...

I really like that medal a lot.

Congratulations on another successful race - in such a beautiful place.