APOLLO BAY P-12 College teachers Darren Gill and Brian Humphries had different reasons to celebrate completing a south-west marathon.
Gill, 43, is a seasoned long-distance runner and crossed the line fifth at the Portland 3 Bays Marathon, while Humphries finished his first 42.2-kilometre epic.
Humphries, Apollo Bay school’s assistant principal, had prepared earlier in the year to compete in the Great Ocean Road Marathon, but had to withdraw due to injury.
The 41-year-old father of two, Lucas and Madison, said getting through his first marathon motivated him to enter next year’s Great Ocean Road event and significantly cut his 4.49.08 time.
“It was one of those things where it was a lot harder than I anticipated, never having ran a marathon, I’d ran a couple of half marathons in the past,” Humphries said.
“At about that 30-kilometre mark my left leg decided it had enough, but I had a banana and a couple of Gatorades and I was good again, but there was about 15 minutes where I really struggled.
“I think the best part of it was meeting lots of people, there were a lot of friendly people and when you see 60-70-year-old blokes running out in front, you know there’s a bit more to do.
“I definitely hope to do the Great Ocean marathon next year, I think knowing what is needed to do, I’ll do a bit more training and I’d like to go under four hours.”
Humphries was also recognised for his sportsmanship at the Portland run, when he put his race on hold to help a competitor cross the line.
“I was pretty knackered as well, but there was basically an old bloke doing his 40th marathon and he lagged out with about 1800 metres to go and was going to stop,” Humphries said.
“So I walked about a kilometre with him and we ran the last 800 metres, so he’d done his 40th marathon.”
Humphries said Gill suffered hamstring soreness in the lead-up to the run, which impacted his run, despite finishing the race in 3.14.16 to earn a top-five finish.
“He had a sore hamstring a couple of weeks out, so if he had of been fitter he would have pushed the winner,” he said.