Friday, August 12, 2005

The Legend's contagious enthusiasm

I first met Keith Mayhew when I joined the Pennant Hills group for a light run a week before the 1997 City to Surf. He was excited! He chatted away continuously about the upcoming race [he would run 53:34], rivals he was aiming to beat and the old days. For Keith, the 'old days' happened a long time ago. He ran in the first ever City to Surf and is one of a handful of people who have completed every run.

Keith is a very accomplished distance runner with a City to Surf PB under 44 minutes for the 14 kilometre run. This year I ran with Keith and the Pennant Hills group before the Gold Coast Half Marathon. He was his same enthusiastic self, full of beans and excited about his goal of the 'Big Triple' in 2005. The 'Big Triple' is a sub-90 half marathon, a sub-40 10k and a sub-60 City to Surf. These are very respectable times, especially for a bloke who is 64 years old.

He didn't make the sub-90 at the Gold Coast but he's in great form and a sub-60 on Sunday looks very likely. When we were running through the bush at Pennant Hills I asked him once again about the 'old days'. He told me many stories. Like how John Andrews, on a training run, blew everyone away up the last big hill at Pennant Hills. The time when he ran an 'A-grade' 3000m at Bruce Stadium with Andrew Lloyd and Rob de Castella in the field and battled with a Canberra runner for second last place in 8:57.

I asked Keith how he trained back in the old days. Did he run twice a day? "I tried that but it was too much time away from home. I usually ran 20 kilometres through the bush every morning before work. On Saturday there'd be a cross country or track race. On Sunday it would be a 20 miler with another 10k in the afternoon." Along with his very impressive City to Surf results Keith was also an excellent track runner with PBs of 8:28 for 3000 metres and 30:19 for 10,000 metres.

All the best on Sunday Keith! Your enthusiasm is contagious and your lifetime of running and racing is a great inspiration.


Blogger speedygeoff said...

Hey, Keith and I know each other from the old days. If you see him say hello from me and tell him I am enjoying my running more than ever! (Don't tell him that's because my runs are taking longer than ever!)

5:41 pm  

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