Here’s to the crazy one… #IM703SA

I’ll be running the Johnson Crane half marathon on Sunday. This particular race holds a special place in my heart. It was my very first 21.1km race. It’s also the race where I ‘hit the wall’ for the first time and had no energy to continue when two friends assisted me in that last stretch of the race (thanks Piet & Rita). Great running memories.

This Sunday will be no different. It’s special but for another reason.

One of my friends @Bohoparadox will be competing in her first Half Iron Man triathlon happening in East London on Sunday. When she first signed up, I thought “OMG, she’s crazy!” But I’ve watched the many months of training, of small victories won and seen her grow from strength to strength.

The bike riding, the laps in the pool and the running. She just hasn’t stopped. She hasn’t given up. It’s a big race and I’m hoping she soaks up each and every second she’s out there! That race belongs to you Bennii!

I know Johnson Crane will be tough on me. I am under-trained and quite nervous about the distance even though I’ve run the race twice before. But my thinking is that in those moments that I doubt myself, in those dark patches of the race where I struggle, I will be thinking of the strength of Bennii and I’ll tell myself that “if she can do it, then so can I.”

But I’m also hoping that when she has any moments of pain or struggle on those up hills and long stretches, that she knows I’m thinking of her and hopefully it pulls her through.

All the best Bennii!

Taking a picture in my head

The kennels where my dogs board when we go away happens to be on the same route of the Johnson Crane running race in Benoni. In fact, we run right passed the kennels as we head up to the 17 km mark of the half marathon.

So when I happened to be in the area recently dropping the girls off at the kennels, I pulled over, stopped the car and got out. There was nothing in sight. The hot sun beat down on the empty road, creating a mirage.

As the silence engulfed me, I was flooded with memories of previous Johnson Crane races. My very first half marathon was Johnson Crane. It was also where I hit the wall on that very road where I was standing. But the route where I managed to cut 20 minutes off my previous PB. I realised that out of all the races on the calendar, Johnson Crane is really close to my heart and one of my favourites.

As I stood looking down the road, I was unsure if it was the memories of the runs, or the light breeze that have me *goosies*, but I promised myself that in 2013 I would once again be back to challenge myself on that road, running that race.

The image of that long, lonely road is etched into my memory until then…