The Sydney Trail Series hosted yet another fantastic carnival at the Kurnell National Park, Botany Bay. I decided to take the dive and do the 20k long course run. I feel like my preparation has been consistent despite doing many solo sessions due to my Teaching commitments. The race started off at a much slower pace to the 11k which was interesting as i am so use to attacking the first couple of km’s to maintain a lead. Instead, i sat back and ran with two other runners. The first 5k was ran on the beach and not surprisingly, my legs actually felt quite strained by the time i entered the single trail. The trails were pretty muddy after a weeks worth of rain which made the conditions quite slippery in areas. Once i reached the coast, it felt like i was doing resistance training as there was a massive head wind coming off the ocean. Thankfully the views of the endless ocean, juxtaposed the force of the wind. After the coastal track, i hit the dunes. This part was quite tough as my legs were already feeling a bit sore from the beach run however i was determined to tackle this run which i did and before i knew it, it was all downhill again leading up to the turnaround point. There was a fair bit of dodging, more coastal track and even some climbing over rocks but that is what makes trail running so interesting and diverse. On the way back in the second half of the race i managed to keep a pretty comfortable pace going staying in 3rd place virtually from start to finish. I found that my pace was steady however i dont think i would have been able to go much faster. Heading back along the single trail, i did take a wrong turn which did cost me a minute or so but thankfully i managed to hold my position. I felt quite good considering i didn’t hydrate throughout the race (my camel back straw was twisted!). I managed to hold the pace the entire way and when i saw i was almost at the end, i picked the pace up and gave the run everything i could all the way to the finish line. A few things i learnt from the race are 1. Ensure your laces are firmly tied- double knot. 2. Make sure your watch memory isn’t full before the run. 3. Make sure your camel pack straw is exposed so you can hydrate 4. Remember where you ran as getting lost wastes time!.
Overall i felt pretty good the entire way and at least i know i can run a half. If i can run a trail half, i’m sure a flat half will feel awesome!
Cheers to my coaches Ben St Lawrence and Gary Howard from Run Crew along with my sponsors Icebug Australia, TomTom Global, Chief Bar, H2COCO, LaceLocker, Pure Sports Hydration and BE Headwear.