Knight charges toward the Surf Coast Century
JAN JUC local Annie Knight is one of many first-time runners to sign up for the 10th edition of the Surf Coast Century on September 11.
The incredible 100km course is no easy feat, however it’s enough to inspire Knight to push herself out of her comfort zone and commit to the journey of running her very first ultra marathon.
Knight grew up on the Surf Coast and has a background as a competitive open water swimmer, netball defender and casual jogger.
Currently working in the events industry with Rapid Ascent, she said it was time to ‘practise what you preach’.
“I want to experience what everyone else gets to experience on race days – the delirious buzz of pre-race banter, the highs and lows over the course; but most of all, the thrill at the finish line knowing that I’ve accomplished what was once an unattainable thought,” Knight said.
“Running greater distance in general has always lingered in the back of my mind, and the Surf Coast Century has been a somewhat lofty dream.”
With a stringent injury management plan and the tick of approval from race director Sam Maffett, Knight began her training back in March under the guidance of Hanny Allston’s training program which is available free to all competitors.
“I flew through the first six weeks of training and was feeling reasonably comfortable,” she said.
“I really enjoyed having a set regime and becoming more focused on strength training, which I’d never done before.”
But it hasn’t all been smooth sailing for Knight who has definitely encountered her challenges so far in the training from injury, through to mental battles.
But as the keen runner put it, a bit of old fashioned self-talk never goes astray to keep her determination fuelled, and end-goal in sight.
Competitors can enter the event either as a solo runner in the 50km or 100km courses, or in a relay team of between two and four runners over the 100km course covering approximately 25km each.
The course takes competitors from Anglesea to Torquay along the beach and then along the clifftop tracks and hinterland trails to Moggs Creek and Aireys Inlet, before returning back in Anglesea on the Surf Coast Walk, via Point Roadknight.
“I’m looking forward to the Currawong loop in Leg 3 which is my favourite section of the course,” Knight said.
“It feels strangely comforting to be running on home soil and this particular leg offers some kind, flat sections where you can just roll along in second gear along some stunning single track.”
The event is expected to attract more than 1,300 runners from around the state and nationally, with a number of local teams already in the mix.
To register or find out more head to the Surf Coast Century website.