A little story for your Saturday…
Last year I was walking around my local bike store, Yellow Jersey, and came across a brochure for an event called Triathlon Pink. Triathlon Pink is an event in support of breast cancer. The distances are small compared to a normal triathlon; the short course being 100m swim, 3km bike, 1km run. I looked at the dates and saw there was an event on the Gold Coast in October. I sent around a group email to see who would be interested in trying out their triathlon skills. It would be the perfect event as the distances were manageable for beginners. It’s a ‘fun’ event.
As you all know, I started chemo in October. Back then I thought, “I can still do the short course.” As it turned out, I was advised it wasn’t a good idea as the event was ten days after my first round of chemo, and that would be when my WBC’s would be lowest. As I’m an obedient patient, I held off from doing the event; lucky because I ended up in hospital on that day (if you remember) from having zero WBC’s. Lucky… I looked again at the website and saw there was another event in January, and this one was in Brisbane. PERFECT! I was due to finish chemo in December. I’ll be fine for that event, so I thought… So again, around went the email trying to rope in a few friends to lock in January. Then, chemo was extended. Great. It seemed I was destined NOT to take part in this event. I made the promise to my friends that if anyone wanted to take part, I would be there to support them.
Fast-forward to a few weeks ago. A friend of mine, Melissa had mentioned that instead of doing the triathlon, she had registered to take part in the 5km Fun Run Pink, which was open to both genders. She had signed up her boyfriend, Adam, also.
“Well I can run 5km!”
Screw spectating, I’m going to register, also. They were awesome and started a team family ‘Go Team Rocky’. So then there was three…
Today was Triathlon Pink / Fun Run Pink day. We woke up to beautiful clear skies, donned as much pink gear as we could gather and made our way to the Chandler Centre. I absolutely love the atmosphere at race events: the music, the crowds, people stressing about their bikes (usually me). We registered and lined up for our free T-shirt. I was a bit of a geek and took my race belt to attach my number; I was so excited to put a number back around my waist!
It wasn’t long before we were underway. 5km is nothing new for me, I’ve set out on a few 5km runs lately, but usually after 3km I would incorporate a few ‘walks’. Today, my aim was to keep running, no matter how slow. The course was a 2x 2.5km loop… with a hill (x2). We made it around the first loop, no problem. As we saw the hill ahead of us, for the second time, we all grimaced – well I know I did. One foot in front of the other is all it takes, I reminded myself. I kept my eyes on the turn-around sign at the top of the hill, and knew that I just had to make it to that point. What goes up must come down… The hard part was nearly over. I couldn’t have done it without the support of Melissa and Adam. There is something very special about having people around you to keep you pushing on. Melissa charged ahead up the hill and Adam stayed by my side. It was perfect! We all caught up together on the downhill and continued to the finish line. The official times are yet to be posted, but I think we crossed the line between 26-28 minutes. Very happy!
I honestly didn’t think I would be feeling this good three-months in from starting chemo. I didn’t think I would even be able to walk 5km at this stage. As you can imagine, I was beside myself with excitement that I had run the 5km continuously… but I couldn’t have done it without Melissa and Adam.
The perfect run was finished with a perfect breakfast at South Bank. What a start to the weekend! Now it’s time for some Australian Open action, and a nap.
** Side note: I spotted the event directors from Augustine Heights parkrun. Congratulations to the guy (I wish I knew his name), he was one of the top finishers!