Here comes the muffin man

I don't normally post every run... but I think this is worth a few notes (if only for myself)

Cara and me are up early and off for the final G3 Series race of the season, this one has 10k and 15k so *obviously* we're in for the 15k. We ran the first in the series (5k and 10k) but missed out on the second one being over in Wendover for the WW50 that weekend.

We've done these races for several years now and they're great fun and brilliantly organised with a real mix of runners of all abilities. The weather can be rather unpredictable which just adds to the fun. Unfortunately no Hugo with us this year, being off at University now, so thankfully I'll be one place higher in the results.

Bad boy bad boy, whatcha gonna do.

Before the start we all hang around near to the starting mats... (although Cara has insisted she's not staying with me and goes back off into the pack to find some peace)
I hang back a bit and leave a gap assuming a group will form in front, but everyone seems to want to stay behind, oh well... ok I'll ease into it and assume a bunch of speedsters will nip past once the "gun" goes.

Hmmmm again, still no, although another runner comes alongside we run together to the first turn, OK I turn and brake to get some runners to go in front. That's better, although there should be a few more up front here (this won't be an issue later once we go uphill)

I'm sure I'm not overdoing it, but perhaps I have started very slightly too hot.

We hit the first hill... aaaand there we go as runners trot past.

At 2k in we hit the first patch of sludge (in some years parts of the course have been mud baths), that'll be fun as more runners come through churning it up, and hilarious for those out in their road trainers.

First downhill... and past I go, like a breeze-block dropped into a river, sigh, here we go.


OK, so I'm feeling slow and heavy again (mentioned this before in my WW50 write up) this *might* be related to the return to the office.

My first day back in the office, I calculated, had entailed 5 tall lattes, one sausage bap, one morning muffin, one lunchtime curry and one afternoon cake. 😊
Managing to get that back under control now, but the ability to simply walk up to a counter and get cake on demand is too enjoyable and rewarding.

But the collateral damage is really noticeable when racing as these skinny whippets effortlessly tap past  me once the gradient increases... and then I rocket back past once gravity kicks in again (although it's not a zero sum game).

I'd joked about this with the runners I'd passed on the descent, who'd taken me on the 30ish percent incline up the south side of St Martha's. Once we're onto the climb through the woods on the other side they repass me and one of them cheerily says "all right muffins" as he passes by again. Bastard.

We've got a winding route through some nice woodland now, and I see the 10k sign. Just a "parkrun" to go. Fuck.

How many times can we do St Martha's?

Next I see a bright pink arrow in front but I can't see if it's pointing left or right yet... (there may be tears in my eyes at this point, I blame the cold air) the sign is on a hill, i.e. I can see the ground climbing steeply to the right and dropping down to the left but can't see which is the direction on the sign yet. I say a silent prayer then see the sign is pointing downwards as it comes into focus. Thank god for that.

The pattern is still repeating. Each slight incline we hit and someone glides past.

Onto the final drag back through the sand and I'm keeping pace with the runner who just passed me up on the last climb, we hit a left arrow and he runs on. I yell left, the runners around me (we've just merged with the 10k runners) all yell left, but he keeps running on. I realise I've stopped to shout. What the hell am I doing? I'm racing, he seems to still be running on even though we've all just screamed our lungs at him, so, mentally I shrug and push on back up towards Newlands. I assume he'll trot past me any second anyway once he rejoins so slog on....

Yess... 14k sign... thank whoever... finally onto the FLAT long drag to the line, I peg it, I'm still worried I'll be caught, but I'm pretty sure no-one will be able to close on me at this pace.

and finish. 14th place. and slower than my previous run (2017? I think) on this course. 

I feel rather sick and move down to the bench to clap in the runners coming and wait for Cara... but also to avoid the attention of the first-aiders on duty who'd been worried about me and hovered about asking if I was ok just after the last race.

I keep clapping, retching and making friends with any dogs that come over to investigate. When Cara comes in I struggle to keep up the pace as she runs up to the line! Apparently I look "a funny colour".

I moan about the lack of flapjacks now, they've been hoovered up by the other runners and console myself with an apple. yay. but also.. perhaps for the best really.

a few hours later and I'm starting to feel human again.

Probably need to get some decent cross country running practice in, or just stick to the long stuff...

and fewer muffins perhaps.

The Strava link

Relive animation


Popular posts from this blog

seven month update

Tracking running Part #2

back from the brink