Now for my Games Vis­it­ing ath­letes a big in­spi­ra­tion 10 weeks out from marathon

Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin - - NEWS - ALISTER THOM­SON alister.thom­son@news.com.au

YES­TER­DAY I went down to South­port’s Broad­wa­ter Park­lands – where the Com­mon­wealth Games marathon starts and ends – in the hope of in­spi­ra­tion for the Gold Coast Marathon on July 1.

With just 10 weeks to go be­fore the big day, it is per­haps for­tu­itous that the Games race comes at this point in time.

To­mor­row some of the best long-dis­tance run­ners in the (Com­mon­wealth) world will bat­tle it out for the gold medal.

The course runs north to the aptly-named Run­away Bay be­fore com­peti­tors turn around at 4.4km to race all the way up, past Hedges Ave, to Burleigh Heads and turn around again, to come back to the fin­ish line by Broad­wa­ter Park­lands.

At 42.195km, a marathon is enough to faze any mere mor­tal. I’d be ly­ing if I said I wasn’t strug­gling with the train­ing.

Cut­ting down on booze is one thing, but choco­late as well! It is al­most too much to take.

I’m 80 per cent sure I have blis­ters on my feet (hey, I’m not a doc­tor OK) and my back aches at the end of my runs.

Also I am haunted by past demons (dra­matic!) in­clud­ing when I told work­mates I had food poi­son­ing and so couldn’t com­plete the half-marathon 10 years back.

In­stead, I lay in bed with a hang­over. Thank you Orion you damn de­li­cious Ja­panese beer.

So what was I do­ing yes­ter­day, you ask?

I was vi­su­al­is­ing the race. Visu­al­i­sa­tion is a highly ef­fec­tive tool in any run­ner’s ar­moury.

Af­ter all, it helps enor­mously to pic­ture your­self pass the fin­ish line and the tremen­dous sense of ac­com­plish­ment you will un­doubt­edly feel.

It is all part of build­ing self­be­lief.

How­ever, to­mor­row I will not only be pic­tur­ing my­self run­ning be­side the Kenyans (yes, yes I can fan­ta­sise), but I will also be watch­ing care­fully the dif­fer­ent run­ners and their run­ning styles.

If you’re run­ning in the Gold Coast Marathon I’d sug­gest you head down to­mor­row too.

Af­ter all, it is a free event, and be­lieve me, these day, that is a rare thing in­deed.

Pic­ture: JERAD WILLIAMS

Gold Coast Bul­letin jour­nal­ist Alister Thom­son get­ting ready for the Gold Coast Marathon by run­ning part of the Com­mon­wealth Games marathon course.

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