The Terenure 5 Mile – what a race!! It was a beautiful sunny day, and the kind people in the Terenure 5 Mile camp had warned everyone to have the sunscreen on and the water in. Summer was here and what better way to spend a Sunday morning than in the lovely suburb of Terenure.
Of course, I’m biased. I’m from Terenure originally and my parents still live there. This time two years ago I saw the ads for the Terenure 5 Mile and was dismayed that I couldn’t run it. I had been running for eighteen months and had long ago decided that 5k was my max distance. Twice a week I would run two and a half or three k, then my 5k parkrun on Saturday morning was my long run. However, when I saw those ads, I thought I just might be able to do it the following year if I set my mind to it. I followed a 5-10k training plan (thank you, Mary Jennings) and, sure enough, I got myself to run the Terenure 5 Mile in 2015. It was very special to run past Bushy Park, where I spent many a day on the swings, playing tennis and rolling down the hill to the bandstand. (We even had free, open-air concerts in those days). The race also brought me past my primary school and many familiar landmarks. It was a privilege and my very first 5 Miler, my very first race beyond 5k. I was buzzing.
This year, the Terenure 5 Mile brought every bit as much fun and excitement. It was sold out online the week before the race, bringing a great crowd of runners and walkers to the start line. There was a lovely T-shirt handed out with the race numbers – a long-sleeved one because Terenure 5 Mile had very kindly asked their followers which they would prefer. Long-sleeved won out, though I reckon some people may have been second-guessing their vote as the day turned out to be a bit of a scorcher!
I had a notion this year to invite my siblings to join me. They have varying levels of running capability (some don’t run at all, one has run a marathon) but the Terenure 5 Mile welcomes everyone, whether walker, jogger or runner. Yesterday, 10 family members lined out to participate, and everyone had a great time. My parents walked the short distance to the bottom of the Templeogue Road to cheer them on and they were so proud to see them running past. Afterwards, they gathered in my brother’s house to compare race notes. Today, they are equally proud and embarrassed at the race photos that are appearing on Facebook. There are so many photographers on the course and at the finish line – another credit to the Terenure 5 Mile crew. I must say, there were a few people obviously training on the QT, because they ran excellent times and surprised everyone.
Of course, having persuaded so many family members to sign up, I had to withdraw due to illness. However, I was lucky to be well enough to go and watch. My current motto is “If you can’t run, volunteer and if you can’t volunteer, cheer”. So I stood myself on a low wall at the bottom of the Templeogue Road. It was a perfect vantage point to spot my family and lots of familiar faces. I saw many parkrun friends, fellow Le Cheile club members, fellow 5 Alivers and the great Waterstown Warriors. Yes, I’d much prefer to be running, especially as my plan was to run the whole way with my youngest sister. She was doing exactly the same as I did, following Mary Jennings’ plan to get to 8k, having been stuck at 5k. I’m so proud that she ran the race entirely on her own.
I have to say, I’m rightly chuffed to see my brothers and sisters, sisters-in-law and nephew running the Terenure 5 Mile yesterday. And they are all talking about making it an annual event. I’m delighted that I went to cheer them on and I look forward to joining them next year at the start line.