Tag Archives: Brisbane Marathon

Back into the running

It’s been a while since I did much running but yesterday I made the bold move of entering the Brisbane Marathon on 4 August. There’s nothing like a crazy goal to kick me into gear.

I have been wanting to get back into running for some time now but wanted to give myself time to rebuild my fitness and endurance after last year’s forced break. I always knew that, when the time was right, I would re-enter the running arena. Suddenly, the time feels right. Sure, I could have done the sensible thing and taken a staged approach of entering a 10km, half marathon (or two) and then a marathon. But regular readers of my blog will have worked out that the sensible thing isn’t something I do.

The City to Surf Marathon in Perth last August was my first marathon. I ran it in 4:17 but didn’t prepare properly so paid a heft price. For the Brisbane Marathon, I’m taking a different approach. I have a training program that only requires me to run three days a week, which is about the most I am willing to run because I need to leave space in my life for the various forms of cycling that I love. Especially now that I’ve scored a steel frame and forks, and a few other bits and pieces with which to build a single speed road racer.

But back to the running. My goal for the Brisbane Marathon is to run a 5:00 – 5:30 time. That’s right. I don’t want to run fast. My goal for the marathon is to soak up the experience of running in a massive crowd of runners in my home city. I want to come home with loads of photos. And, most of all, I want to remain injury free both pre- and post-race.

So today, I kicked off my return to running with an easy 5km trot through my neighbourhood. I didn’t wear a watch or carry a GPS device with me. I just went for a nice easy relaxing run. And that’s how I hope to continue my marathon training. I know I have the base fitness to keep moving for 42.2km so now I just have to build the confidence that I can run most of the distance comfortably enough to make the most of the day. My training won’t be about building speed or running hills. I gave that type of training up when I quit triathlon. Nope, I hope my running training will be an extension of the pleasure I am getting from my other “training”.

Total: 5km run

Brisbane Running Festival

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My right hand is numb and my fingers no longer move. I’ve been standing out in the cold since 5am and, despite the cold I’m having a blast.

It’s about 7am, and the marathon and half marathon runners are passing me in a steady stream. My hand is so cold because I’ve been holding it up to show the runners which way to go.

I never realised there were so many runners in Brisbane. And I know there are even more coming later in the 10km event and still more who haven’t entered the Brisbane Running Festival.

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I’m volunteering as a course marshal down at Kangaroo Point near the Brisbane Jazz Club not far from the Story Bridge. I am here to support my running club mates from Brisbane Bayside Runners and Walkers.

It’s a brilliant event and wonderful to share this experience with my club mates. I film each of them as they pass through. There are so many of them that the clip ends up being over 3 mins long after I put all the little sections together.

At about 7:15am I look up and see the silhouette bodies of thousands of 10km runners streaming across the Story Bridge. The sight is magical. I feel intimately connected with humanity and intensely proud to call Brisbane home. We must live in a brilliant city to have an event like this. All these thousands of people coming together with a shared goal: to enjoy a running race.

My club mates all run well. We are represented across all the events and throughout the field. We have runners who win their categories and one who came top 3 (maybe he won, I haven’t checked the results yet). We have a lady who just finished her first marathon and a few who finished their first 10km.

But most importantly, we have runners who just got out and gave it a go for the pure joy of participation. It wasn’t all about winning and, to me, that’s how sport should be enjoyed.

I’m glad I gave up a few hours to help with the event. It was time well spent.