Monday, 27 August 2012

Karen writes the morning of the event

We arrived in the sunshine coast on Friday afternoon, funny how familiar it seemed, that long road up the coast from Brisbane looked like all the other roads in our limited Australian experience.

We have stayed in a tiny unit in a ‘resort’ at Alexandra Headlands, and looking at the lineup of port-a-loo’s on the other side of the road we realised that Kate had again struck the perfect place, we were right over the road from the startline for the marathon.

I ate too much on Friday, combined with a horribly early start to get to the airport I was feeling sluggish and “oh no, who had this insane idea”.   Saturday wasn’t much better, perhaps I was about to be afflicted with some nasty lurgy, is that a twinge in my sciatic nerve, ah, my Achilles tendons are tender?  The only real advantage about having something like a marathon to worry about, I haven’t been in the least bit worried about the presentation I have to give next week at the Australian diabetes conference.

But it is now nearly 5am on Sunday morning, it is dark and quiet outside.  We had breakfast a couple of hours ago, and we are wondering what the temperature will be like, it was pretty warm yesterday, very unlike the kiwi winter we have done our training in.  Kate has just suggested that the ‘slight rise’ at one end of the course (I would describe it as a steady incline requiring some degree of respect since we have to do the dratted thing 5 times) is “hill repeats” and she has said “you know what happens with hill repeats, you get faster”.   Yep.

The place we are staying is funny, the wall between the minute bathroom and the room which has the beds/kitchenette is frosted glass.  Very disconcerting.

Anyway, I am in my bed looking over at the tiny table which appears carelessly heaped with stuff, it is actually my running gear laid out in the order which I want to put it on.  I doubt I will need a jacket, will paranoia make me grab one as I walk out the door?   My new fuel-belt has little tabs on it for the race number so I didn’t have to worry about pinning it to my top, I had had a slight panic last night because I couldn’t find my socks but they are there ready in the shoes, I need to roughly pack so we can head off when we get back which will hopefully be in less than 5 hours from when we walk across the road.
Oh, given this is an ’inaugural’ event, all the competitor names are listed in a booklet, we saw only 3 participants who came from New Zealand addresses, and the man we spoke to over the road setting up the barriers was pleased to meet up with ‘international runners’.   How cool is that, we are ‘international’ athletes.   Hmmm, perhaps we can blame jetlag as the rest of the field leaves us spinning in their Australian dust?