The weather wasn’t the greatest. It was overcast and there was a slight wind coming in from the lake. But at least it didn’t rain (not till later anyway). I started in the back of the 5th wave and tried to settle into a steady pace within the first 3km. That was hard to do with that downhill bit right off the start line. But I think I managed to stay disciplined and keep to my pace.
My first 5km split was slower than I would have liked it to be, but picking up the pace after the 10km marker wasn’t really an alternative either. I did put in a few short surges, overtaking a few people on the narrow footpath as we headed back into Taupo, but would settle back into a steady pace until the last 2km when I tried to sprint it. I passed as many people as I could on that last hill and through into the finish line. It was strong finish which I was happy with, but when I noted my time, it left me wondering if I didn’t give it as much as I could have throughout the earlier parts of the race. My legs felt like they didn’t quite belong to me towards the end (they seemed to have a mind of their own), and at the finish my left knee was so sore I was walking with a limp. But that cleared up quickly enough after I walked around a bit more.
Overall, I think it was a good course. It was fairly flat, and I was already anticipating that last hill – which really wasn’t too hard to do when you know the finish line is only 500m away. I did push through some pain towards the end, but I guess for my first official half marathon, I did an OK job.