The month of November has been a stunner! Central Otago has bought out the 25+ degree days, a bustling active community, knocked of two running events and I’ve been preparing to head up to Auckland next week for my final 12th run for 2018 – the Speights West Coaster Trail Run at Bethells Beach – where I’ll be running the half marathon distance.
With event #10 being the Coastal Classic half marathon trail run at Taieri Mouth in early November, it was a mixed bag of different terrain, lots of hills across farm lands, roads, cattle holes, through to running along the sandy coastline to finish, even with a heel blister and hail storm to finish with – I absolutely loved it and I guess it showed in my result coming third in my category for the race. Definitely did not make a personal best in regards to time however for the run it was great and yes! I did camp out in my car again for this trip – you have to do what you have to do, to get to where you wanna be! However, I’m hoping that was the last time. I’ve learnt how important rest is before a race. I could tell the huge difference in energy levels and stamina I felt running after a good comfortable sleep compared to one where I had driven for hours after a long work shift through the night then camped out in my car for the few hours, a big difference.
My first marathon was also this month! and I LOVED it. I think I’m going to become one of those people who travel the world to run marathons, and explore incredible trails. Look at this.. could you imagine running next to Elephant, Rhino, Buffalo, Lion and Leopard in the Savannah of Africa.. I don’t think there’ll ever be another time I’d run so fast in my life!
The Queenstown International Marathon was personally my highlighted event for 2017. I’ve always wanted to run a marathon and this happened to be the best run I’d done throughout the whole year, pacing at 5 minute 40 second km’s throughout the majority of the race I didn’t stop at all, I had an abundance of energy and it was all thanks to my friend Paul who lent me a waist (we call ‘fanny pack’ here in NZ) that had Sports Beans, a Clif Blok, and Powerade. Call me crazy all you wish but I was running past hundreds of people cheering them on, as I started from the back of the pack, really.. I was late for the event due to traffic stops along the way so luckily my time started when I had started running however it gave me a huge boost to be encouraging everyone from the back end through to the middle and through to the first couple of hundred of runners. I even had enough energy to go out for lunch with Maddy (who had also just completed the half marathon with an awesome time of 1 hour 38 minutes!) and a couple of others – to then come home soon after, take some magnesium pills and crash completely with quite possibly one of the best rested sleeps ever.
Unfortunately, since this race I’ve had to take a week off to rest due to injury, as I have slight stress fractures down the left side of my left foot and they stunted my plans to run the 12th event in Canterbury last week. I have turned this into a blessing as I’ve organised a trip to Auckland to visit the charities I’ve raised money for next week, to donate and compete in my 12th event there, too! This will be The Speights West Coaster half marathon. This final race was going to be a full marathon but with the injury, it’s best to look after #1 and do something a little less heavy, I’ll still give it my all but only competing in a half marathon for this event.
Queenstown Resort College – If you’re wanting to study in a beautiful place, with outdoor adventure literally at your doorstep, you have it studying with them. They’ve become one of our first supporters and sponsors for 2017 along with Brandland another to be later announced however last week I met with Cheyden and Brent to do an interview for the student newsletter in regards to ‘Life After QRC’ and ‘RunThe12’ they also did a mufti day with funds raised being donated to our Give A Little page which then go to our children’s charities, KidsCan, Make A Wish and Variety.
Pretty excited on a personal level to visit my best friend Nefertiti who I haven’t seen in a couple of years who is hitting the music scene solo and with her band TLA at music festivals this year. And also I’d like to say a massive thank you to those who have donated this year, my Family, my Freedom Church Family here in Queenstown, and my lovely friends Jessie, Melissa and Katelyn and Maddy who are in these photos – for being the greatest supporters throughout this whole year! Katelyn completed her first 10KM running event and through following RunThe12 – has been inspired to compete in the Half Marathon next year, and Maddy who as I mentioned above, ran the half marathon! Support from your closest friends mean more than the world, thank you, I love you guys!
I hope through reading this – you become inspired to enter a running event in your community too! Or even on holiday, it’s one of my favorite ways to explore new places.
I am so excited to write the final blog post for 2017 in a couple of weeks and update you on the mission to Auckland and plans for 2018.
You can donate to support our New Zealand children’s charities here!