RUNNING 42km wouldn't be most people's idea of fun, but David Lovell enjoys the challenge.
The First National Yamba real estate principal was recovering from last weekend's marathon on Thursday and delighting in the fact he slashed 34 minutes off his personal best for the distance.
Despite punishing his body for more than three hours, Mr Lovell said the run around the city had some highlights.
"I enjoyed running through the botanical gardens, along near Circular Quay where there were people cheering us on, running along the Harbour Bridge and finishing at the Opera House.
"Running over the Harbour Bridge at the start when there was no traffic was amazing.
"Running up Oxford St around 8am when everyone was coming out of the clubs, the bouncers were out the front and the music pumping was funny."
He said the most difficult stretch was between the 30 and 40km mark, where you have to fight physical and mental battles.
"It's that real game between your head and your legs.
"You are saying to yourself 'I have still got an hour to go'."
Yamba mother Melinda O'Mahoney said getting fit was her motivation to do the half marathon.
"I'm just happy I finished it, because I started from scratch.
"Basically I said 'I am going to start running and I am going to do the Sydney Marathon'."
Having completed the 21.1km run, Ms O'Mahoney said she would have a tilt at longer distances. "My goal is to do a full marathon at some stage."
Mr Lovell finished the 42.2km in three hours 33 minutes and 24 seconds, coming 21 out of 228 runners in the 45-49 age division.
Ms O'Mahoney placed 238 out of 432 in the 40-44 age division in two hours 15 minutes and 44 seconds.