Bega runners do the dash in Canberra

A DOZEN Bega runners travelled to Canberra on the weekend to take part in the Australia running festival. 

In excellent conditions to run 21 kilometres - or 42 - the squad took to the Canberra road course where many ran their personal bests. 

Cafe Evolve owner Anna Leamon said she enjoyed the event and it has pushed the group to sign on for more events. 

“There is quite a few things going on and everyone is keen to do more,” Leamon said. 

“A few of us are going to the Blackmores half marathon event in September.

“Some are going to the City to Surf in Sydney and I know a couple of people are looking to the King of the Mountain up in Nowra,” she said. 

Co-owner Peter Haggar broke his personal marathon best, running the full 42 kilometres in three hours and 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, Sonia Alexander did the quickest half marathon of the group, in one hour, 40 minutes. 

Leamon said the group had been training strenusouly in the lead up to make their best times. 

“Everyone trained really hard.

“For the last three months we’ve all been training with morning runs, interval training and sessions in the gym.

“You gradually build up the amount of kilometres you run, then just before the run you taper off so you’re nice and fresh,” she said. 

Leamon said the event was “small” when compared to some Sydney events, but could be daunting when you’re packed in with 2500 other competitors. 

“Everybody is sort of vying to get out and get in to their own personal space – you do want to get out fast and get going.

“You’re in this kind of chute and it can be a bit frustrating, people tend to do some silly things.”

However, the Canberra course ran smoothly she said. 

“The field did disperse quite quickly.

“You’re running on the roads, but all the traffic is obviously blocked off so you just concentrate on what you’re doing.

“There’s drink stations, officials to tell you which way to go and St John Ambulance and things like that, so there is always people watching what’s going on.

“Everyone watches out for each other, too,” she said. 

Leamon said she loved running and hoped it could inspire younger people to get active. 

“We all sort of do it for a health and fitness point of view.

“We want to inspire people to get out – it doesn’t have to be running, but just to stay active,” Leamon said. 

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