Ross Half Marathon – highs and lows

What a tough race! But what a great race too!  Ross Marathons half marathon 2014.  A wonderfully organised event that is streamlined, professional and laid back all at the same time.  I recommend this event to all runners everywhere.  Such a beautiful part of Tasmania to run in.

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There were a mix of highs and lows yesterday as we ran this half marathon, my third for the year and Pauly’s fourth.

Still feeling not quite fighting fit Pauly decided that he would run with me. We have never ran a whole race together, in fact we’ve never really done anything race-wise together apart from line up at the start line. It was so lovely to have the company of my best friend for what was going to turn out to be the toughest half marathon I’ve participated in and the third slowest (I found it harder than Point to Pinnacle and that’s known as the World’s Toughest Half Marathon!).

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The course is two laps of 10.55kms. Part of the course is a 4km stretch which on the way out is hot hot hot but on the way back the head wind is so uncomfortable and persistent that the heat of the way out starts to seem not so bad after all.

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The course is so pretty; I concentrated on the scenery and cheering running friends on. Since the start of Launceston parkrun nearly two years ago and joining the Launceston Running Club we now know lots of runners. It was really great over the two laps to cheer on so many running friends. While I was finding it tough they all looked like they were taking it in their stride.

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But let’s not concentrate on the tough things. What were the highs?

  • Being there at the right time with words of encouragement and some magic jelly beans from my magic jelly bean bag to help out a young lady doing her first half marathon. That was a special moment. She told me at the end that they really did the trick.
  • Cheering on members from You & Me PT (where we attend our Outside Fit class on a Tuesday). There were about a dozen runners most of whom were doing the team half marathon that involved one lap of the 10.55km course – for most their longest distance! And several who were doing the half marathon distance for the first time. What a wonderful bunch of fitness people having a go at running longer than they ever have. It was fun to cheer them on.
  • The lovely Tina who handed me a gel at the halfway mark complete with top removed. So good! Thank you Tina xxx
  • Helping out a little lady who was really struggling with cramps. She fell in with Pauly and I as we battled that head wind for the second time. Pauly’s slipstream helped her a lot! We rhythmically paced it out step by step together.
  • Knowing that when the going gets tough by putting a smile on my face and singing a song in my head or saying a mantra, that I can keep running on. You can do it, you can do it, go unsporty girl! Was my favourite yesterday hehe
  • Meeting a blog follower (why does this always make me cry when it’s just so happy???). I had noticed this runner at the start because she had the cutest plaits and had a little frill on her running top – gotta love a bit of cute running fashion and this young lady was looking wonderful! She said the nicest things to me about how I’ve encouraged her and inspired her. I was so humbled. I might have encouraged her but to know my ramblings are helping another runner on to meet their goals has in turn encouraged and inspired me (thank you Amanda xxx).

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But THE biggest high of the day was crossing the finish line with my gorgeous husband, my best friend Paul. My Pauly is why I started running in the first place. For him to slow his pace way way way down to match mine on the day and then to cross the finish line holding hands? It was so good. And my beautiful running friend Fiona managed to get a photo. Just the memory of the way we finished together brings a tear to my eye but to have the photo is priceless to me. (Thanks Fiona xxx).

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nearly half way

And what can I say about my beautiful friend Janette who stood by me at the end when I had another huge coughing fit and thought I was going to be sick… thank you Janette, you’re an angel xxx

Not a good race in many many ways but the best, most perfect race in so many more. In the ways that count it was the best race ever. And a new medal! This is the first time that the Ross Marathon Festival has given Finisher’s Medals. Sweet!

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just about to round the corner at the half way mark…I love how we are in step ❤

There were some amazing runners out there yesterday who really deserved their finishers medals. I was talking to one of the elites and he said how very tough he’d found the course and that he was 10 minutes slower than last year… if it was tough for the elites then it’s ok that it was tough for some us ordinary runners too.

Next half marathon? The Melbourne Marathon Festival half marathon in a month. Goal? To have fun, cheer and encourage as many runners as I can and to run all the way and finish, a bit like yesterday 🙂

Happy running 🙂

Crossing the line holding hands <3

Crossing the line holding hands ❤  a finish line has NEVER felt so good.  We ran together for 2:13:23

PS photos shamelessly taken from You & Me PT and The Running Group facebook pages and two by the lovely Fiona 🙂  I wish I could take such good photos.

24 thoughts on “Ross Half Marathon – highs and lows

  1. Well done on finishing a tough run, being ill can take it out of us more than we realise. I love the photos of the two of you running together especially the last one 🙂
    Make sure you take time to recover this week, especially with another half coming up so soon, you have run amazingly well this year, the year of the half!
    PS, I ran (legs covered in rock tape) and had a big smile for most of it as was just so happy to be able to run after a difficult week with legs again. Bit sore today but less than before the run so definitely was the right decision 🙂

    • Hello Sam 🙂 I did look out for you! Well done on running and finishing. So glad to hear that your legs aren’t as sore as before the run, that’s really good news. Thanks for your lovely comments about the photos and I promise to take care of myself. An easy week is planned for this week and then Monday next week back into being prepared for the Melbourne half. Yes, the year of the half marathon…I still think about running all these 21.1kms and have to pinch myself…unbelievable!

      • I looked for you too! Only a few seconds faster than last year but after 4 months off and a very slow intro back into it, I’m happy. I also liked the posters, I knew they were probably for a loved one rather than all of us but they made me smile still 🙂
        Your fitness and enthusiasm are inspiring, as always xx

      • Thanks Sam 🙂 the next run we’ll have to find each other! I had a sneaky look at your time. After coming off a major injury you managed that time? I’m impressed!!! Thank goodness for the posters and all the people who cheered on perfect strangers…I so appreciated them 🙂

  2. Aww that’s very cute! LOVE the pics xxx well done your Annietude is infectious!!!! Love you!!!! This has made an otherwise uninspired Monday morning so much better!! Thanks for sharing and shoto girl for finishing in style and with such kindness and kharma! Xxx

    • Oh thanks CeeJay 🙂 you’re making me have a little tear. Glad I brightened up your Monday morning. My Annietude got a bit of a flogging yesterday! There was a young lady with a ‘You Can Do It’ sign and I read it, looked at her happy face and ran on with more determination…love the cheer squads during races! And the blogosphere cheer squad too xxx

  3. Running in the heat? And then with a strong cross wind? Ooohh, I’m hearing you- that is tough! You’ve some great fruit there though, for your labours. Including some fab pics! Gotta frame at least one of then Annie for your hall of fame!

    • Thanks Red Hen 🙂 the bling was pretty awesome. And the first time the race has had medals, very nice indeed. I think I will get a photo framed – I seriously doubt the man will slum it back of pack with me again. He was off like an antelope tonight with The Running Group and it was supposed to be a recovery run!

    • Thanks 🙂 it was so nice to have company. He often paces running friends, in fact he’s usually pacing someone. I’m looking forward to him getting back to peak fitness and having a good old crack just for himself 🙂

  4. Wow, Annie! I just love your positive attitude. You will always remember this race as the one Pauly ran with you, what a sweetheart. I love your finish photo. Look, matching outfits even 🙂 There’s so much more to running than getting a good time. Good for you for doing the race and finishing!! That’s perseverance!

    • Thanks Cynthia 🙂 He is a sweetheart…doubt that he’ll go so slow again but it was just so nice! Totally agree that there is more to running than getting a good time – just finishing makes it a good time really I think. I really appreciate your lovely comment Cynthia 🙂 it’s made my day xxx

  5. You are very fortunate to have a friend who is both your husband and running partner. Helps make life much easier. You both look great in perfect stride!

  6. Great job Annie and good for you to look at all o the positives in a tough race. I very well know the strength of running with one’s best friend. Lovely photos of the two of you together.

  7. As always a brilliantly written blog it always feels like I’m running the races with ye;) Your descriptions of the races you’ve been to and the fun runs you’ve been on paint a lovely picture and Pauly is a good man hold on to him 😉

    • Thank you 🙂 Pauly is a good man but honestly I doubt he’ll do it again unless I get faster and faster…and I don’t think that’s going to happen. I like being at the back too much. Glad you enjoy my ramblings, I am so fortunate that I get to run is so many wonderful events in so many lovely places. It’s nice to be able to write about them.

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