Round the Bays 2018 - lessons learnt

20 February 2018 by Jess Freeman

I'll be honest, enrolling and organising a fun run for colleagues, sounded like anything but 'fun'. How does the words fun and run even go together? I suspect using the tag “Dumb Run” wouldn’t have attracted as many people, nor would it have been a very good marketing campaign ... so, I put my happy face on and rounded up some enthusiastic colleagues.

Here are some things I learnt when I organised the 2018 Catalyst team for the Wellington Cigna Round the Bays.

  • Company branded gear looks awesome – but order early! The women’s sizes were out of stock when we ordered, so we had to settle for the unisex option. This resulted in us wearing goofy tent like tee's with a tiny neck hole. At least we stood out and all in all, it didn't matter in the grand scheme of things.
  • When ordering food and drink, people tend to want to be able to sit somewhere – so hire some chairs (a table wouldn’t go amiss either!) Everyone coped sitting on the ground without blankets or pillows, but after a run it would have been nice to act civilised and eat food off a table.
  • Chocolate melts in the sun, keep it in the chilly bin. No-one eats the apples.
  • Round the Bays official staff give out bananas and water for free, so don’t spend valuable dollars from your own pocket on bananas and water.
  • It’s hot – really hot. Most people brought their own sunscreen and hats but a team supply would have been handy, or even just an email reminder to the team the day before the event. Also, have extra safety pins for attaching race bibs to shirts.
  • People REALLY do not like Powerade Zero. Avoid at all costs.
  • There’s about 15,000 people milling about before the race, and just because your company
  • t-shirt is a bright colour (and looks like a tent) does not mean you’ll just “bump into each other”. Have a plan and exchange phone numbers in the lead up to event day.
  • Having only ever done the walk before, this was my first year registering for the run. I registered for 10k but later changed to 6.5k because, well, let’s face it – Christmas/holiday eating was not kind to my body or fitness regime. Commit, but don’t punish yourself for changing plans either.
  • Always set a time goal! ... even if it is to “simply cross the finish line”

All in all, it was a great day! It was awesome to see employees turn up on their day off to exercise in the heat and wind and still have a giant smile plastered on their face as they crossed the finish line.

It was nice to see a team of Catalystas made up from the different teams we have here, congratulating each other, talking about their race times and having a good time despite being absolutely exhausted and having no where to sit but the ground! Thanks to all of you who participated and gave up your Sunday morning to come and push yourself over the finish line.

Catalyst round the bay teamTeam


Well done to the Cigna Round the Bays team for organising a really successful event. Who's in for 2019? I've heard there is a half marathon option...