How Twilight helped begin my running journey …by Leah Belson
Twilight 2015 at University of Queensland was actually my first ever running event!
Never ever in my wildest dreams had I thought that doing a running event was for me. That was until it was suggested maybe I might be helped along with my very new foray into running (which meant 1 or 2kms in the local park – or 5 minutes on the treadmill) by going to a beginner’s session with intraining.
I was very nervous…but it was wonderful. It was usually just me and one or two others with Dan the coach at Indooroopilly.
The hills did me in. I could hardly run 3km without stopping. Dan was so patient. One of the other runners, Fleur (who went on to become a fantastic friend of mine) mentioned that intraining had a marathon school – for half and full marathon training.
By this point I had given parkrun a go and was getting better at the 5km distance due the training from Dan. I knew I needed a big goal to keep going with my running – so half marathon it was and I signed up.
Part of the intraining half-marathon training plan included getting race ready – by racing.
Twilight at UQ was key to the plan. The thought of fronting up to an actual event was quite scary but the training leading into the event was spot on.
The day of the race I was ready to give it a crack. This would be my longest run so far – without stopping.
I still remember that apprehension and waiting for the gun to go off. I had been told that you get carried along with the crowd and that it makes you run faster – and that was true. It was a tough run, with all the rain, but I got it done. The volunteers were out in force – cheering us on. That blew me away – strangers cheering you all the way through – what a buzz! Where else in life, as an adult, do people line the streets and applaud your efforts? It’s amazing!
Twilight is such a wonderfully welcoming event. It is catered to runners of all abilities and you can’t help but enjoy yourself in that atmosphere! It set me up beautifully for my first half marathon on the Gold Coast later that year! I was pushed gently out of my comfort zone and this gave me the confidence to take on bigger goals during the next 2 years. I’ve run a 5k and a 10k at UQ Twilight and a 10k at Twilight Bay. This year will be my first Twilight Bay half-marathon! Looking forward to running under the moon and stars!