Raced at Trail Rush. Enjoyed it. Brilliant event, well organised and very well marshalled. Big thanks go out to all involved.
As for the race itself and how I felt:
Felt tired from the off, but paced it almost perfectly in order to secure a 2hr 11min finish time. Not amazing, but 39th place wasn’t as far back as I’d feared. I’d actually worried about finishing at all.
Going up the first field, while still inside Graves Park, I considered the possibility of a DNF, but by the time I’d climbed to the first downhill into the Golf Course, I was chatting with fellow runners Graeme McCarthy and Kenny Turner, having a whale of a time. I kicked a tree root or stone early on and almost caused myself a mischief, which has become a trademark these days, but it was starting to prove beneficial having challenged myself and the cobwebs were definitely off.
As far as my course description was concerned(from my previous post), it was about right. I realised on running it again, that the bridge at the top of Porter Clough is in fact concrete, not wood(memory playing tricks). I went a bit too quick through the descent in Meersbrook Park, which I knew would hurt my quads, then felt the results soon after while trying to ‘saunter’ up Porter Clough, so I’m glad that for the most part I was able to maintain good form and a constant speed(slow).
The short stride length* and high cadence paid off, since the ‘push -push – push’ works and didn’t cause any undue fatigue in itself.
That said, by the time I reached Graves Park again I was spent. Legs were dead. I struggled to maintain a run of any kind, so it seemed strange when I happened upon Stu Hale inside the park – along with his son, Accelerate Photography’s Ben Hale. As I passed, Stu appeared to yell “fast time Chris!”, which I pondered for a moment, since he rarely throws compliments that freely and I hadn’t considered my efforts all that spectacular. Then it occurred to me, he’d yelled “last climb Chris!”. Ahhhh yes, that makes more sense. So I climbed half way and started walking, I was so knacked. Into the final field, with spectators and previous finishers watching, judging, it was impossible to walk any longer, but I did sort of crawl in what might be the slowest run I’ve ever managed. I had reached my limit.
Today I have stiff legs, but I’m satisfied to have finally tackled a good run in my only race so far of 2014. I’m taking positives from it.
Hope everybody had a good time, it certainly looked as if they did. Nice to see some familiar faces and meet some twitter regulars I’d never put faces to.
*short at the best of times, I know.