Runners warm up for 10th Rocky River Run
RUNNING: It's time to get running, Rockhampton.
The 7 Rocky River Run is just two days away but it is not too late to take part in the popular annual charity event, which this year celebrates its 10th anniversary.
Nearly 1400 people have already registered and organisers are hoping for 2000 by the time the starter's gun fires on Sunday.
The course has been changed this year, with the start line moved to Quay St, but the event still caters for participants of all levels, with distances of 2km, 5km, 10km and 21km.
Rockhampton's Craig McCormack has previously run in the half-marathon at the Rocky River Run but has changed stride this year, involved on the organisational front.
He said the run had multi-pronged appeal - as a physical challenge for participants, as a great community event, an innovative fundraiser and as a wonderful showpiece for the Rockhampton region.
In its nine years, it has raised more than $250,000 for youth mental health issues and the prevention of youth suicide, as well as for families that need to travel to Brisbane for life-saving surgery and treatment.
"It's a worthwhile cause so it's nice for people to not only do something for themselves but also do something for other people in the community who need some help,” Craig said.
The variety of distances in the Rocky River Run ensures that runners (and walkers) of all ability levels can get involved.
”We've got a lot of very good runners in Rocky who often travel away to events. It's nice to have something like this in their own back yard,” Craig said.
"The 21km is a fantastic distance because it challenges the competent runner but also entices those that are curious. It's an honest distance not out of reach for the generally fit person.
"The 5km and 10km are both tidy little distances. A lot of participants will be doing it for the first time. They should have a realistic target in mind and try not to get carried away with the excitement of the start line.
"We will have pace runners on the course to give them some appreciation of where they are in relation to time and provide the encouragement they need just to stay on track.”
Craig said the Rocky River Run invited people to challenge themselves and set a personal best, and they often achieved it because of the race atmosphere.
"It's very satisfying to be part of something bigger,” he said. "There's something nice about turning up at a start line, and feeling the butterflies and experiencing a sense of occasion.
"An event like this really does help you get a kilometre or two under you belt before you know it.
"That's why I think a lot of people tend to do a PB when they're in a crowd. They get swept along with the emotion and they're listening to other people's footsteps or they've got the advantage of having a pace runner that you know is on your heels keeping you honest.
"That's what's good about an event like this - people step up to the mark.”
Craig said while he was out doing course measurements, he had noticed a large number of runners out pounding the pavement in preparation for Sunday's run.
And he urged those who were thinking about taking part to do it.
"You don't have to become a runner overnight, you just need to enjoy being part of an event.
”Even if you don't think you're ready, enter the 5km and enjoy the occasion. Shortly after you cross the finish line, you will be planning for RRR 2018.”
Details and registration are available on-line at 7rockyriverrun.com.au. Registration is also open at the 7RRR admin desk on Saturday at Quest Rockhampton, Victoria Pde, between 8am and 5pm.
The 7 Rocky River Run is on Sunday
6.15am: Channel 7 Half Marathon
7am: McDonald's 10km
8.30am: CTC Labour Hire 5km
8.45am: Rockhampton Regional Council 2km