There’s a thin line of red light separating the clouds on the horizon from the blue grey sky above. Coochiemudlo Island is still a dark lump in the ocean but the dinghies and sailing boats moored in the bay are already clearly visible. The tide is high and the water’s surface is patterned by areas of flat calm between the ripples.
The grass beneath my bare feet is cold and damp. I look down and see that my toes have turned red as my body tries to pump blood to keep them warm. I’m not concerned. It’s still over 10’C and the worst of the winter cold should be behind us. I’m running well, averaging 5:13 minutes per kilometre. That’s a lot faster than my marathon and ultra marathon race pace but I’m only running 5km today. I feel strong.
As I pass the 2km mark the sun starts to break free of the clouds. The big ball of orange rises quickly into the sky. By the time I turn for home at the 2.5km mark the sun is a large bright red sphere filling the sky just north of Coochiemudlo Island. It’s red rays reflect off the water and I feel it’s warmth fill the air. For the first few minutes of my return leg I turn around to watch the sun’s ascent. Then, it’s filling the eastern sky. No longer do I run in the dawn but it is fully day.
Total: 5.01km @ 5:13 pace full barefoot. Average temperature: 11.5’C. Elevation gain: 15m.