Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Sydney Rocks!

City2Surf - What a Day!!

Mr B, CJ and Mr CJ decided to make a real weekend of this run. We had a ball. We booked the Avillion Hotel in Pitt Street into a special "Winter Warmer" package which included a room upgrade, valet parking, a late check-out and a full breakfast each day. It was also situated in a very convenient location near the shops and very near the start of the run.

Sunday dawned bright and sunny - cool to start but very pleasant. More than 63,000 people competed in the run and the atmosphere was amazing. Mr B and I ran in the Green Group which was the second start. We were fairly near the back of the group as we didn't want to be standing round waiting for the start for too long. This way we avoided the loo queue as we could leave it to the last minute before walking from the hotel. CJ started from the red group which started on the starters' gun at the correct time. Our start was about 10 minutes later.

To start with it was a shuffle and very difficult to weave through the crowds. It took a while before it was possible to break into a jog and finally a run. There were bands playing and the usual cry of "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, oy oy oy" echoing through the tunnel. There were also quite a few people dressed in fancy dress. One lady I passed was sporting a large hat covered completely in flowers matched up with flowers hung round her neck and on her top. There were quite a few interesting sights on the way and many interesting t-shirts to read!

The best part of the City2Surf is the atmosphere and the discovery of so many happy chatty people and the amazing CR community including a great cheer squad calling our names during that last tough kilometre which seems to go on forever. It certainly helped push me on hearing the encouraging cheers of our CR cheer squads. Thanks guys. It really is appreciated.

I really enjoyed the race and felt very strong - must be all that hill training. Gandalf told me my time was 78:16. However the official results in the paper state that my time was 79:47. I was placed 9638th out of over 63,000 starters. At least I came in under 80minutes which pleased me! I felt comfortable throughout the entire run stopping for water at nearly all the drink stations on the way. I didn't find Heartbreak Hill difficult but I was frustrated trying to weave my way through all the crowds. I did find this year that there seemed to be more people than usual and it was more difficult to find a space to run my own race. However, the people are what make this particular race so special. It may be difficult to achieve a great time in these groups but it is amazing fun. I loved every minute of it. I also passed a number of people I knew from Canberra. I saw Marco, Roy and Marg on the way which was exciting.

After running through the finishing chute and receiving my finishers' medal I found PRB (or he found me) walking to our meeting place. This was his last run before major surgery and he was very happy with his time. We came in virtually together. It was so good to see him and be able to wish him well. We walked to the meeting spot and sure enough there were so many people there we knew. I had seen The Owl on the run and called out to her where we were meeting afterwards and several CRs turned up there including Jen, Lulu and Tuggeranong Don who came over to talk to us while we were waiting for others. It was great to chat with all these lovely CRs and yummo to Owl who had made the most beautiful apricot slice which I did not resist after buring all those calories. We also caught up with Roy, Graeme and JS from Canberra - lots of Canberra friends turned up at the City2Surf. It really is a great day.

My stats according to Gandalf:
Distance: 14:31
Calories burned: 812
Average pace per km: 5:28
Fastest km: 4:18 (must have been a downhill!)

We were joined by Barb, Mark and Marg and we all took the free bus back to the city where we found a nice spot for lunch and coffee. After a quick shower back at the hotel we went to Darling Harbour where the boys visited a Ferrari display while CJ and I managed some retail therapy and also managed to bump into Ewen and Gordon who were "loitering with intent"! In the evening we enjoyed a beautiful meal back at the hotel before finally going to bed tired but still on a high from the wonderful day we had all enjoyed.

Monday 14 August
Today Mr B and I have been married 35 years! We're celebrating the occasion in style at the end of August when we're flying to the Whitsundays for 5 nights and staying on Daydream Island which sounds pretty idyllic. It sounds like heaven to me! CJ and I managed some very satisfactory retail therapy this morning. We both bought gorgeous shoes. Mine are red, pointy, high heeled and just beautiful. I also bought a flat pair to wear with jeans. They are Italian and were half price and are soooo comfortable - green, navy and white and soft soft leather.

We took advantage of the late check-out and finally left Sydney in the early afternoon stopping at our favourite spot in Berrima on the way home. Then straight to visit our son with pressies as he turned 29 on Saturday. We also detoured to the CISAC gym in Belconnen where I had organised to collect a special membership which includes both gyms and the pool. I'm starting it on 5 September and having an assessment and program done for me that morning. This will be a very different experience from my current gym. Club Pink is the ladies' part of the gym and it's just so pretty and looks fabulous with lots of classes and great modern equipment, treadmills, bikes, weights, breakfast every day etc. Club Blue is for the pool and includes the solarium, sauna and spa pool. Club Lime is the main gym with lots more classes and weights etc. My membership covers all three gym memberships - should be fantastic.

This morning I went for a run and oh boy, my calves hurt, my hamstrings hurt and I ran slowly in the freezing cold with long sleeves, ear warmers, leggings - very different from Sydney. However although the nights and mornings are so cold I have to add that we are experiencing delightful Spring weather right now with today's temps reaching 18deg.

Stats as follows:
Distance: 6km
Calories: 350
Time taken: 36:18
Pace per km: 6:04

Oh dear, this was a tad slow - I think my legs are suffering!!

This morning I went to the gym and did my chest/shoulders/back program. It felt hard and I felt tired. However I managed to cover all the appropriate program including my abs. However I was a bit late for work!

Today was another stunner once the fog cleared in the morning. Tonight I went to yoga. There were fewer people in the class this evening so a bit more personal attention. CJ was caught up in meetings at work so couldn't make it tonight. As it turned out I was very glad I had attended as I will miss one session when we're in the Whitsundays.

Something else I have noticed lately is that the days are starting to get longer. It's becoming light earlier in the mornings and staying light later in the evening. Spring is just around the corner!


  1. So lovely to see you on Sunday Strewth. I'm soooo glad the cheersquad helped you along that tough last kms!

    Congrats on your wedding anniversary!

  2. Great to meet you on Sunday Strewth. Many congratulations on your 35 years of marriage.

  3. I have to agree - those red shoes are simply gorgeous!

  4. As always, I really enjoyed catching up with you and CJ at Bondi. It really was such a special day as you beautifully told it. This one was my third C2S and the most enjoyable, especially because of the great friends I caught up - including you. It was great to meet Mr B, too. He is a very impressive looking man.

    And 35 years of marriage is something also very special indeed. You show so much zest in your posts. They are a delight to read.

  5. What a great way to celebrate an Anniversary with a holiday together.

    Enjoy the Anniversary and the holiday.

  6. What?! We weren't "loitering with intent"; we were just checking out the lovely ladies one often sees down at Darling Harbour on such a spectacular sunny day!