And the tempest sucked the air in with its massive lungs and let loose the fury of its breath. It lined up the seaside hamlet of Bridport and unleashed the blast all the way to Scottsdale. No valley, no dip in the road between seaside and country was safe; there was no lee to shelter, no protection, no safe place. The blast of wind blew and blew all the way.
Saturday was the Launceston Running Club’s Scottsdale to Bridport Half Marathon, this is a handicapped race. My handicap was 20:10 after the start. This is the fourth time I’ve run this course and the toughest.
I’ve run many a windy run. Notably was Ross Marathon in September last year where the wind was strong and ferocious but with a few sheltered kms out of the 10.55km loop in which to regroup and have a break from the wind. A training run that Louie and I did one Friday about a year ago was so strong that when the wind was at our backs we seemed to fly!
Yes, windy runs of note. BUT nothing like yesterday. The wind simply did not stop. Wind is too polite a term. Let’s call it WIND with cyclonic ambition, a WIND that took delight in gusts and gales. A WIND on steroids doing HIIT training perhaps!
Scottsdale to Bridport is an undulating point to point run that includes three massive hills – the whole entire way was one big angry, enraged, furious head wind. It didn’t die down from start to finish in fact at times the gusts became so huge that if I happened to have air (as in both feet off the ground) I was blown off the road into the gravel verge.
But guess what? I was a minute faster than Run Melbourne two weeks ago which was calm and flat. Huh? How did that happen? I have no idea. I got angry with the wind. The desire to walk was huge but I remembered the encouragement that Janette has given me recently to keep on running and not to talk myself into walking so I kept running on. AND I am so proud of my 5km splits! I kept running in trying conditions and managed eight 1km laps under 6:00/km.
Everyone who ran on Saturday should be extremely proud of themselves. That wind was tough. Every single runner who finished looked as if they’d just spent a few hours in a tumble dryer machine. They looked pooped. Exhausted. Red in the face. Completely spent.
The winner managed a half marathon PB!!! How did she do that??? This little lady sped past me at the 17km mark. It was her first win with the club and she was incredibly happy, excited but also humble in victory. Her attitude to her running and winning is bench mark. Her humility is truly inspiring. Her time was 1:38:57! It was an absolute joy to congratulate her at the end and celebrate her success.
Pauly had a good run too 1:48:05 and my time was 2:12:48. Not a PB for either of us, but we both agreed that despite the conditions we did our absolute best and that in my book is a PB.
I was so pooped at the end that I only managed to get a shot of Pauly finishing.
This finish line felt so good. Just to be able to stop and shelter from the wind – heaven!
But let’s not think about time. It was tough out there. Anyone who finished that event is a winner. A big winner! Why? Because they didn’t give up even though honestly the weather was so bad that pulling out was a valid option. I looked at the trees bending and swaying in the wind, especially about 5kms out of Bridport. It was scary! Well done to all the runners. It was character building and showed us all how strong we are.
Next stop, Adelaide Marathon next weekend. I’ll be embracing the taper this week.
Happy running 🙂