My mum is currently in New Zealand visiting family and when she heard about the local Botany Town Centre Summer Fun Run she thought she might as well take part. As I’ve never run outside the UK before I asked her write a review. So take it away Anne….
Botany Town Centre Summer fun run and walk (5 and 10k), Auckland, New Zealand
14th February 2016
Thank you Nicola for asking me to write this guest post, it was not only the first time I have run a race without Nicola next to me encouraging me on, but also the first time running a race overseas.
I arrived in Auckland in the early hours of Friday night/Saturday morning, the run was at 9am on Sunday 14th Feb, so there was not much time to acclimatise to the time difference or the change in temperature. The last time I ran was in London, a 5 mile run in 6 degrees, the temperature at the start of this race was 22 degrees, so quite a difference.
Nicola’s Dad had arrived in Auckland the week before me, so had picked up my race pack in advance, so I already had my number and timing chip when I got to the start line on the morning of the race. From what I could see, the organisation of the run was really good. The runners and walkers started at the same time, with the walkers being asked to start at the back, there were about 450 entrants, so quite a small race, but I really like running races of this size.
The run started on time at 9am, the race course was on tarmac around an Auckland suburb and shopping area. The roads were not closed and we were running alongside lanes of cars on main roads and side roads, however, our running lanes were for the most part cordoned off from the car lanes and before we started, we had been asked to run on the pavements where possible. The course was quite flat and as I was running the 10k, it was a 2 circuit run.
I usually really enjoy running in warm temperatures, but this time I found it really hard going, and had to have some walking breaks, consequently, I ran my slowest 10k, I think this was due to the fact of only being here for a day before the race and having a 30 hour plane journey without any sleep, but as I wasn’t expecting to get a PB, I wasn’t disappointed.
I was surprised, especially give that it was already quite warm, that there was only one water station and that was about 2.5k from the start, so too soon for me to need a drink on the first circuit but I really could have done with some water around the 5k mark, but had to wait another 2.5k before I could get a drink. The other thing I wasn’t so happy about was that I really like having kilometre markers so I can gauge how far there is left to run, and on this run, there weren’t any which was a real shame.
The thing I was disappointed about though, was that there was no medal or souvenir at the end, I crossed the finish line and that was it, a bit of an anti climax. I will just have to make do with some photos. All in all, I enjoyed this run and the experience of running internationally and now feel confident to enter races on my own and overseas, which is great as it will open a whole new world of running.
Thanks to my mum for writing this review and my dad for taking photos!
Have you ever ran a race abroad? What differences did you find?
What races outside of your country would you like to run?