Our own Cliona Mooney set her alarm clock early to run the Tara Dawn Run in the hope of seeing a promised golden sun-rise. But would the rain clouds part in time?
So, whose idea was it for me to sign up for the Tara Dawn Run?
Four kilometers at 4am … it sounded like a good idea at the time.
“By the time the first runners cross the finish line the sun is rising and bathing the Hill in a warm golden glow. It’s an amazing feeling and one that needs to be experienced,” the organisers said.
Sign me up.
I didn’t think it through. I was not a happy camper when my alarm started beeping in my ear at 2am this morning, and even less happy as I drove to Tara in torrential rain.
Before I even got out of the car park, my feet were soaked through. Reaching the start line, I was soaked from the knees down. The organiser on the mic proclaimed that “at least the rain had stopped”. Never a good idea to say that out loud. A couple of seconds later, the rain came back – bucketing down.
It was more than a drizzle. It certainly wasn’t a gentle summer shower. This was the type of rain that fills your eyes up with puddles!
Then came the hill.
Early start: Sleep-deprived runners gather near the hill of Tara
I usually love a nice downward hill on a run, to help pick up a bit of pace. On this occasion though, the hill was a virtual mudslide. It was actually impossible to stop. We just had to focus hard on staying upright on two feet. One poor girl slipped and was undoubtedly covered in mud, as people around her swerved to avoid a domino effect. Thank god it wasn’t me – I’d never live it down – that’s surely footage that would end up on YouTube.
At least I had my music in my ear to keep me motivated and keep up the pace. But I hadn’t considered that iPhones and torrential rain don’t mix well. Turns out, if water gets in to the earphone jack, the speakers stop working. I don’t run as well when the only sound I can hear is my own heavy breathing!
I have never been so happy to see the finish line of a race.
It was all worth it for the sausage sambos at the end! (Even if I didn’t follow the advice in this post about healthy eating)
Who needs medals? Sausage sambos were on offer for all the finishers
Full credit is due to the organisers of the Tara Dawn Run – for getting everyone warmed up and in good spirits at the start of the race, for organising plenty of stewards to look after parking at the event, for the endless supplies of water and bananas, and of course the sausage rolls after the race!
Will I be back to do it again next year? Of course. I have a very short memory. I’ll fall for it all over again when I read that “at dawn, the sun will be rising and bathing the Hill of Tara in a warm golden glow.”
Sounds like fun.
Sign me up!
The rest of the weekend, meanwhile, will be spent cleaning the muck off my runners in time for the 8k Dublin Docklands Run on Tuesday – have you guessed how fast we’ll finish?