For those who keep an eye on the blog you might know that I had a long break from running this year, thanks to an Achilles injury and have only just gotten back to learn to run this time around. I haven’t done any sort of fun run since last year, and am slowly getting my running legs back.
The JP Morgan Corporate Challenge is a 5.6km run or walk held in 13 countries. Globally there are 270,000 participants which I found quite impressive. My company participates and kindly paid my entry fee – so what else did I have to do on a Wednesday night other than join 8,500 other corporate warriors for a run around Centennial Park.
In typical work fashion I was running late. Thankfully I am not an elite runner, as I got caught up in traffic and the race had started before I even got anywhere near where I needed to be. Anyway warm up taken care of as ran through the park and found where I needed to be, just it in time for my red group start.
I was fairly unimpressed by the first 700m or so as it was straight up a hill, not a massive one, but still.. ugh .. what a terrible way to start. I pushed myself up the hill and ended up with a stitch when I got to the top. I am still undecided about whether I like fun runs. I don’t find them that much fun! I am not an anxious person by nature, but I get quite anxious about running races. I put it down to the fact that I am not an excellent runner, but a slow one who likes to run for exercise. Something about running with a number strapped to my chest with thousands of other people freaks me out a bit.
So lots of negative thoughts began creeping into my head, while I alternated walking and running along. You are so slow, so many people are overtaking you, what are you even doing this for, all that kind of stuff. But 2 km mark I had started to feel differently , your time is okay, you have only been back at this for 5 weeks, don’t be so hard on yourself, just keep going, at least you are having a go. It also made me think a bit about running alone vs running with a friend or two, but maybe this is a topic for another day.
And with that attitude I went along the rest of the way, tunes blaring in my ears and instead of focusing on negative things, taking in the sights and enjoying a trot around the lake as the sun started to go down. I ended up finishing in 50 mins, which was 10 mins faster than I planned. All of my mates had well and truly finished, but the best thing about this event was the corporate hospitality tent also kindly supplied by my work, where I could grab a drink and a feed and no one cared how fast I did it, everyone was just happy to catch up and have a chat.
As far as running events go this one was very well organised and once I relaxed a bit it was a great place to run around, plus look a t-shirt just for finishing ! I am going to put my name down for next year. In the meantime I will keep running along and try to enjoy myself.