NOT many punters would think a quick jog around Gosling Creek would be the ideal way to prepare for a marathon in Nagano, Japan.
Canberra distance runner Brad Croker does.
Croker took out this year’s Orange Colour City Running Festival half marathon, completing the 21.1 kilometre circuit in a time of 71 minutes and 30 seconds.
But yesterday’s win was just the first step in a much bigger running plan.
Using the “nice running conditions” on a wet Orange day better than most, Croker is banking on using his rich vein of form to his advantage when he tackles the Nagano Marathon in Japan in a little under two months’ time.
“The head wind at the turn around was a bit rough, but I guess, for me, it was all about preparation for the Nagano Marathon, which is eight weeks,” Croker said.
“The plan was to run the half marathon at marathon effort.
“It felt reasonably comfortable the whole way.”
Croker said he was eying off a time two hours 20 minutes in Nagano.
“It’s good preparation anyway,” he said after yesterday’s run.
“A bit of rain takes your mind of the running. As I said before, the head wind was the only issue at the turn around until you got back on the dirt.”
A seasoned long distance runner, this year’s running festival was Croker’s first in Orange.
He said the spectacle on show was something to savour.
“I’ve done a few half marathons before in Melbourne and that sort of thing. I love the country fun runs. I love the atmosphere, there’s so much encouragement on the course,” he enthused.
“Coming from a track running background, you don’t get that.”