Monday of the June bank holiday weekend again and it was scorcher. A little overcast in the morning but it just got better from there. A perfect day for sitting down enjoying the sun with a cold glass of something, watching the world go by. It was not a perfect day for a 10km run, although 50,000 women turned out and took part in this year. As you walk through the city in the morning, the place is slow to wake up but as the women start to file in off buses, trains, darts and the Luas there is a sense of atmosphere that only goes with the Women’s Mini-Marathon every year. The city is so different, almost no men anywhere and those you can see are cleverly disguised which I can only assume is for their own safety. The colours of all the t-shirts which would brighten up any day. The laughing by small groups of people waiting on the streets to go to the starting area. As usual, the I.H.S. contingent, 32 in total this year, met at Buswell’s hotel before the race to drop off bags, get their t-shirts and most importantly on the day to hydrate. With 2 p.m. fast approaching, everyone headed to their respective starting points. The warm-ups were done, a few bars of ‘Molly Malone\’ were sung and they were off. There were people still crossing the starting line 30 minutes after the race was started.
Sometimes when people describe a race, it’s usually by distance markers like the 5km mark, the 7km mark or by where the ups and downs are that either help or hinder you getting home. When you talk about this race afterwards it’s usually by a set of events from along the way. So here is a quick synopsis of the race. Approaching the starting line, there was a small section with banana peels from runners who were making sure they had energy for the race. I don’t know about you but from everything I learned from cartoons, banana peels on the road in front of so many runners, doesn’t sound like a great idea. There were bands and people cheering runners the whole way. Around the half way mark there is a point where you come on to the N11 see the people in front coming back on the other side of the road, you look up and see the ramp up and the bridge and there is a dilemma, do you push on up the ramp or do you pop across to the other side. It’s not really a dilemma but there is a second in the heat where it does cross your mind. Shortly after this, there was a band asking runners to raise their hands if they were tired. With full commitment to the fun of the day, the runners raised both hands and as a result of the tiredness, heat, dehydration and the required hand foot co-ordination needed to run with their hands in the air there were quite a few speed wobbles. Then around the 7km mark the Dublin fire brigade gave thousands of people a few moments of cooling bliss. This did depend on your timing as some runners were very disappointed as they were gone past when the fire brigade arrived. The heat was starting to take its toll but all carried on to the finish line. When everyone arrived back to Buswell’s, they were tired, thirsty, hungry but best of all in a great mood and looking forward to next year.
There were so many new faces this year running for the I.H.S. as well as those who have done it year after year consistently. There were runners, joggers, walkers and some of the youngest participants we have had in a few years. To all of you from all of us THANK YOU!!! Thank you for the getting involved in fundraising, thank you for doing the race, thank you for bearing the heat and finishing and thank you for your continued support. The I.H.S. calendar would be a lot worse off each year without this event and without you.