Well I hope you have all had a fab Christmas and New Year – get me – like there are millions of you reading this! I combined a lot of eating with a very little training and that showed in Ely on New Year’s Eve
To be fair, even before I started I was worried as it turned out the Ely Runners race was in Little Downham…. bit more of that later
Firstly the journey – pretty much a standard horrid journey that was supposed to be around 3 and a half hours and turned itself into nearer 5. This was due to a bridge flood near to where I was staying. I had diverted from the sat nav route to visit the house my mam and dad lived in for over 20 years in St Ives. I have no idea why I did that but for some reason my conscience said I couldn’t come this far in case mam asked if I had seen the house (why would she?) and then I would have to feel bad that I didn’t (not because of my mam but some weird brain wiring of my own).
Anyway, saw the house – looked the same!, but then had come off main route and got to 7 minutes from my bed and breakfast the the road was closed due to flooding. I had no idea where I was in relation to where I was going and so spent 45 mins turning corners that my sat nav then redirected me back to the flooded bridge from. I contemplated ignoring the signs for around 10 seconds but the conscience stepped in again (which was a good thing in hindsight as the lady at the B and B said someone last year had done that and had died – how awful is that?)
Anyway, eventually I worked out if I pressed “avoid roadblock” (yep, I really am that stupid!) that the sat nav would find me another route (it didn’t mention that it would add another hour on the journey though)
I had a lovely B and B but it was on a farm on really flat land and the weather was atrocious. I honestly thought we were going to take off during the night so my sleep was not the best.
Anyway, the race. Got there (had the usual freak about all the “proper” runners (standard) but then more pressingly became very disturbed by where I actually was. I was in Little Downham. 2.8 miles from Ely City Centre. My heart dropped as I was (and am still a little bit) convinced that I wasn’t in a race that was going to count for Ely and so not only was I going to have to run as I was already there, but also I was going to have to come back and run in Ely itself. Anyway, a straw poll on facebook (of all the lovely people who are actually supporting my running and me, so whom are a little bit biased) and some frantic questioning of any race organisers I could find (yep, they thought I was more than a little odd – no change there then) meant that as the village is in the Parish of Ely it could be counted. I still am wrestling with my conscience so the minute someone questions that, I know that I will make myself go back again to Ely and run randomly throught the City Centre. I hate having a conscience sometimes…
The race itself would have been fab if 1) I was allowed to wear earphones (I hate running without music – my own negative self commentary is really, really tiring) 2) I didn’t comment all the way through to myself about negative things (see point 1) 3) the wind had not been hurricane force – oh yes it was (oops – sorry that was the panto me, mam, dad and jorja grace went to still being on my mind!)
When the wind was behind me (for around 30 seconds of the race) I was on fire! I was Mo Farah and Usain Bolt and beyond. For the rest of the race I was me – slightly less fit that 10 days previously, slightly more heavy for those 10 days of eating and relative inactivity, taking negative self talk to a whole new level and fighting a headwind that at times had me running on the spot or shooting off the side of the road rather than progressing forward.
Anyway, I finished in 65 mins which wasn’t bad considering I walked a significant amount and I really over did the “what are you doing? you can’t do this” talk. I am very thankful to Smiffy – the guy in front who was only fractionally faster than me and became my unknowing pacer (name on T shirt – didn’t actually talk to him) – although he ended up significantly further up than me in the finishing line – not sure how that happened! I also liked the guy who was really encouraging his girlfriend as we came round the corner and getting very enthusiastic about the cheering crowds chanting names, as he let me run with him thinking the big support was all for me and I was somehow important ….never did find out who the Julie was that they were actually cheering (but graciously accepted his admiration anyway!)
So, finished race and got home 5 hours later – didn’t notice sat nav taking me back to the flooded bridge again – doh! got diverted – again. Added an hour to journey – again. Cross – again
Came home and washed all kit and saw in the New Year. My resolution is to give 2013 to Luca. I am running for him pretty much every week now until December and I will raise this bloody money if it kills me.
Off to Durham and Newcastle on Thursday in a manic double header – my hamstring is really looking forward to this. Oh, will feed back on the participation of my mam who is accompanying me. We are doing Park Runs on days when there are none so there is only the map reading issue (me) and the balance issue (mam) and the fact that she is walking and I am running, to overcome. Should be a breeze!
Blwyddyn Newydd Dda !!!