Aged nineteen, on 22 August 1970, I ran my first marathon in 2:44, followed five weeks later with a 2:41. I was hooked, and in the 43 years since, have run more than 50 marathons. In my 20s I ran a 2:19, in my 30s another 2:19, and in my 40s a 2:38. As I slowed, the love affair began to wane and I only ran two in my 50s, the best of which was a 3:04. Now in my 60s, with an ageing body and chronic injuries, I plan to deploy all of my experience in pursuit of one last sub-3 marathon.
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Some of my fellow Trotters ready for this morning's run
Terrigal Trotters held its first official Halloween Run this morning and it was a great success for the club. A good number of members made the effort, and some made heroic efforts, to dress up for the occasion and we all had plenty of laughs. It's rewarding to belong to a club with the critical mass of committed members sufficient to make such a social event a success. Just another aspect of a club that plays a very large part in my life these days. The friendly running rivalries that make runs competitive enough to be good training, and the collegial support offered by club mates have helped prolong my running career. I have always belonged to running clubs, and most have provided a good blend of social and athletic opportunities, but Terrigal Trotters has come along at just the right time with its range of ages, genders, backgrounds, interests, abilities and inclusive culture to provide continuing motivation as my athletic capability declines.
After the run....that's me in the middle
Fortunately, the weather wasn't too warm, because running the whole 10km in my skeleton suit, including the full head covering, was a very warm affair. I had resolved before running that I would run as fast as I felt comfortable, without worrying if I was further back in the Trotters field than usual, and that was how it worked out. I could feel some pain in my troublesome heel, but it was hard to work out whether or not it was affecting my running efficiency, given I was running in the skeleton suit. I've decided to go ahead with my scheduled 42km trail run tomorrow, hoping that it doesn't set me back. If I get through it without the heel getting worse, I will gain confidence that I'm back on track. Fingers crossed!