Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Sunday, 13 April 2008

Spar Ladies Race 2008

I ran the Spar Ladies Challenge Race this morning. It's the 3rd time I have done this race now, and its still one of my favourites.

It used to always be in September, and in Newlands, but last year it clashed with the Twenty20 Cricket World Cup, so it was moved to Bellville Athletics Stadium, and then they decided to move the date to April.

I really like this race. It is fun, festive, and well organised and catered. The goodie bags are fab and there is always enough water and even coke and juice en route, and you get a 500ml flavoured water at the end.

My family decided to come along this year for the first time. Usually I attend my races alone. It was nice being able to hand over the car keys and not have to worry about any thing.

I wasn't feeling all that enthusiastic this morning though and would have quite happily just gone to sleep again rather than going out to run a race, but since everyone was coming along it wasn't an option, so off we went. I was in time to squeeze my way near to the front at the start again - starting near the back of this race SUCKS, as many people just want to walk, so the start gets very congested and it can be very hard to weave past the dawdlers - so I had a good starting position.

The route was changed from last year, a bit disappointingly, because although last year was quite tough, it was also quite a scenic suburban route. This year we suck to main dual-carriage roads, so it was less interesting.

I started quite strong, but tired quickly, and then by 2km in I already needed to pee!!! Damn. Bugger! I was scanning the side of the road for a suitable bush to duck behind, and then at 2.5km there was a water point with 2 porta-oos. YAY! I was loathe to stop and waste time, but I knew 'knuiping' for 7,5km wasn't a good option either. So I dashed in quickly.

Much relieved I got going again, and was doing ok till about 4.5km and then I just felt tired and a bit demotivated, and at the bottom of a long hill that's not a great feeling! I really just wanted to walk, but knowing the family was waiting gave me a bit of pressure to just push through. I grabbed a coke and drank it awkwardly while still running. Then I got immediate stomach cramps and had to walk for a short while burping all the gas out again. Embarassed Lovely. I carried on plodding up the hill just wanting to finish. The front runners were heading in on the other side of the road.

I kept going, rounding the top of the hill at 7.5km, and then it was a 2 km downhill stretch back to the stadium. I grabbed some Energade, and stopped to walk while I drank it, and then decided to give it my best shot and tried to speed up a little on the down hill.

I had no idea how I was doing time wize. I had just wanted to finish up till then. I always try to finish in under 60 min. This time I was thinking hoping to finish in under 55mins was probably a bit optimistic, what with a loo break AND 2 walking breaks along the way....

I finally got to the last corner and made my way back to the stadium and to the end where I finished at 52 mins 25secs! Wow my best time ever! (last year I did it in 54:16)I think I was feeling so drained during the race because I was unknowingly running faster than usual. (And also not knowing if the family were planted somewhere along the route checking me out Wink ) I was looking for the boys at the end, but they were no where to be seen. I finally found them about 10 mins later when they went to the end point thinking I might be coming in soon. PAH! Wink

The atmosphere afterwards is jovial and fun, and we stayed on to picnic for a bit and watch the prize giving. Also having a good giggle at the men in drag competition!


  1. Brilliant time!! i am scared to think what it would have been had you not stoppped to pee, drink water, cramp etc!!! I wait in anticipation for your next one!!!!

  2. Thanks guys.

    Lindy I don't think I can go much faster, I think the rests helped me to keep going though! I am enjoying running at the moment though and I am back at katabox with Norman on Wed, I think that boosts my cardio fitness. He is a speed-bunny that one! :)