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Mixed feelings

Ultra-running legend, Pat Farmer, running
with friend, Dina, near the end of the
"Round the Bay"
Today was Terrigal Trotters' "Round the Bay" run, which is traditionally held on the first Sunday in the New Year.  At just over 37km of roads and concrete bike paths, and usually in humid conditions, this a tough run.  Three weeks ago, I had been planning to use it as a long training run, but the Pulmonary Embolism diagnosis a week ago changed all that.

The event, which circumnavigates Brisbane Water, and is followed by a picnic breakfast, has become increasingly popular within the running club, and today was no exception.  Fifty-five people completed the circuit, including one group of walkers who began at 2:00am!  Some slower runners started at 4:00am while the main bunch set out at 5:00am.

Despite injury, Wayne nears the end of
his 13th consecutive "Round the Bay"
To get some exercise, I drove down to the start in Gosford and then walked 4km out and 4km back along the last section of the course with my camera, photographing the runners and walkers as I encountered them.  It was inspirational to see so many of my friends out testing themselves, including some suffering from injuries and/or a lack of preparation.  In just about every case, I managed to coax a smile out of them, despite their exhaustion.  My friend, Wayne, who is the only person to have run every one of the twelve editions so far, and has had a bad couple of years with various injuries, still found the determination to finish and preserve his record.  We have had a few good tussles on this course in past years.

Trotters gather for breakfast and a low-key presentation
after the "Round the Bay"
The inspiration provided by my friends this morning was, sadly, somewhat offset at frustration with my own situation.  It was only eighteen days ago that I ran the same course on my own without pressing the pace in quite a reasonable time.  I need to remind myself that eighteen days is not that long, and that I was still running up until a week ago.  Assuming next week's Echocardiogram is clear, I may be jogging in another week, and won't have lost much fitness.  Other people with my condition would just be thankful to still be vertical, and I need to remember that too.