Yesterday evening saw over 2000 people gather down in the Claddagh for the start of The Streets of Galway 8K race. I have been so looking forward to this race as this is the one race from back before the thoughts of running had even entered my head that I had heard other people talk about. I've said before how cool it was on the two 10K's I've done in Ennis it was to pass my own house. Whats better than passing your own house than running through the streets of the city you love and have lived in for over 13 years.
Race Pack Collected - Ready for Road
This race however threw me off as I didn't have any set person to meet up with beside knowing a load of other people racing. I couldn't make plans to car pool with anyone as I knew I had to leave as soon as the race was over (to head home to celebrate my grandparents 54th wedding anniversary) so I made my own way into the city around 6.30pm and turned up at the wedged start line about 10 minutes before the race started.
Luckily I met Phil (or rather Phil saw me) so I joined him in the holding pen before the race started. I couldn't get over the amount of people there but was glad to be with Phil near the front of the pack. At 7pm on the nose the starting gun was fired and we were all let off to run the streets of Galway.
And we're off... (Pic taken from the Maree AC Facebook Page)
The route brought us around the Spanish Arch, up Merchants Road and through Eyre Square where it was lovely to see loads of people lining the route cheering on people passing by. From Eyre Square we ran down Eglington Street past the Court House and over the Salmon Weir bridge. We ran around the Cathedral and up to UCHG, before swinging a left and running straight out Mary's Road to Salthill.
The biggest surprise of the whole race was how far 1K really is?! When you know a place so well and are so used to it, I found it seemed to take ages before we would hit the next kilometre sign. The half way (4K) point was at the turn up to Devon Park where from there we ran along Dr Mannix Road, Leisureland and back down the Prom to the Claddagh Hall where I crossed the finish line at the 38m 30.
My official chip time was 38 minutes 15 seconds which I am delighted about. While not my best performance it certainly wasn't shabby. I just didn't have the energy to ramp up my pace at any point. The being said, I've started my 12 week Marathon Training so have been covering a lot of KMs this week (the most I've ever done in a single week), so like the Farmer at the end of Babe - today I'm lying on the couch with my feet up, looking down at them saying 'That'll do Pig... That'll do!'