People who like running always make me jealous.
Staying fit and feeling good is not a chore, for them. It’s a pleasure.
They zip around parks in the early hours of the morning, waving around their arms and their health and for a brief moment I feel incredibly guilty.
But I promptly return to sipping a thick cappuccino. And remind myself ‘I wasn’t born to run’.
The City2Surf, on the other hand, is my arena. What the people who run the 14 kilometre course must not know is that EVERYONE receives a medal when they finish. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO COME FIRST.
One could roll the entire course over a three-day period, and be greeted at the finish line with the same prize as the bloke who finishes in 42 minutes.
While the term ‘fun run’ is an oxymoron, the City2Surf is certainly the world’s most brilliant.
Participants from across the country have become accustomed to a series of kooky traditions since the race’s humble birth in 1971.
Participants throw jumpers and hoodies into trees lining the road at the start of the race, for charity workers to come and collect afterwards; queues for port-a-loos dispersed along the route stretch for hundreds of metres.
Men in clunky gorilla suits begin to regret their decision to dress-up come the two kilometre mark. Plastic cups of gatorade and water found at drink stations are throw into the gutter when empty and heroes taking the course by wheelchair manage to beat absolutely everyone.
Running this Sunday? Listen to The Well’s tips on how not to give a single f*ck about anything or anyone. Post continues after audio.
For those who may not know, the City2Surf had 80,023 entrants last year. Of those, 67,654 completed the course, which stretches 14 kilometres from Sydney’s CBD to the world-famous Bondi Beach.
The most famous part of the course is ‘Heartbreak Hill’, a winding stretch of road linking the sea-level suburb of Rose Bay with the elevated, harbour-view suburb of Vaucluse. Runners/walkers/participants are divided into six groups depending on how fast they will finish the course, and how many times they’ve completed it before. The winner for men tends to finish the race in about 43 minutes, and the winner for women in about 47.
But no one really cares about any of that.
Because on City2Surf day, it’s all about the atmosphere. It’s all about the hilarious characters you meet and the ridiculous things people do along the way. Here are the five types of people you’re bound to come across on race day, whether you watch on tele or are there in the flesh.
Pushing a pram the entire 14 kilometre course is nothing short of awe-inspiring, but they will definitely run over the back of your foot.
Give all mums-with-prams a wide berth, especially on hills, unless giving them encouragement and/or high-fives.
Beware for their shift in mood halfway up Heartbreak Hill, when their enthusiasm and joy will undoubtedly give way to anger and regret.
DO: Words of encouragement, compliment their baby, offer food/water.
DO NOT: Deploy their pram-brakes ‘as a joke’.