After skipping last year’s run, I was determined to take part again this year, and also did a good job of encouraging my fellow project team members to run too.
Despite the rain that was pouring down all afternoon, it finally cleared up just in time for us to run. It didn’t warm up much though, and we were all shivering at the start.
I’ve been excited and yet dreading the run all week. My memories of the first time round are that it was very tough, taking in a couple hills along the way, and finishing with a very evil run up the parking ramp to the roof top garden. It took everything I had on that occasion to complete the course, and I did have to walk up the first, and longest of the hills.
This time round was a rather more pleasant experience, though still hard work. My team mates, and most of the other participants, roared off into the distance, and I resisted the temptation to follow and held myself to a comfortable pace. After about 500m I caught up with Alice, and we ended up running together for the rest of the race.
I’m used to running on my own, but the time passed much more quickly with company, and was also good encouragement when tackling the dreaded hill. This time I made it up without walking, unlike most of the runners just ahead of us, which was possibly my biggest achievement of the whole day, though it took its toll on me by the end of the race.
Soon enough we were on the return leg, encouraged along by the drummers underneath the motorway bridge, and we made the turn back on the approach to the office, only to be hit by a blast of wind. The wind, coupled with the ramp looming up ahead made that last stretch the toughest part of the race for me, and the only point where I wanted to give up and walk. I resisted temptation though, and within a few minutes we were on the approach to the ramp, with Emily standing at the bottom and Trudy and Koen cheering us on at the top. With their encouragement I put my head down and made it up to the top… gasping for breath, I did my best to pull out every last bit of speed and make it to the finish.
I finished in 42:18 – hardly a stellar time, and far behind the rest of my team members, who were all in before 31 minutes were up. My final position – 9th from bottom, one place up from the last time! Next year I’m determined to get out of the bottom 10.