...He said yes and managed to keep up with me for the next half mile and before I knew it we were at mile 10, completed in 10:44 which is pretty good considering the walking!
Another guy from my hometown/parents' club who was very speedy and finished the race a while back had jogged back to this point, and was looking for his team mate. He told us that we were nearly at the top of the b*****d hill and that we then had to find some energy in our legs for a massive steep downhill sprint finish.
I got to the top of the hill and despite feelings of camaraderie with the guy who had been running with me, I could see the finish line down below and knew I had to give it my all. The finish is a seriously steep downhill half mile and I ran as fast as I could for this (or 0.42 on my garmin) with my lungs bursting and my legs aching. I kept in front of the guy I had encouraged though I could hear him breathing on my neck.
Called over the line by an official in 1:30:42 and 8:45 min/mile average, with my last half mile run at 6:10 min/mile pace which I am now feeling in every muscle of my body.
From start to finish I passed 9 people and was passed by 0 which I'm really happy with. This was a well run race for me.
Awaiting official results, I think in my leg I was well below half way over all but just above half way in the ladies placings... will let you all know. 'Only' 10.5 miles, but this is officially the hardest race I've ever done in my life.
Wow what a day I have had at the Round Arran Relay Race.
Please bear with my long report. I was meant to be running a fairly hilly 9 mile leg of this relay race which takes runners round the Isle of Arran along the outer roads of the island with stunning views. My club had one male and one female team going. However I was asked just this morning to swap legs with another lady who had to leave the island earlier so wanted an earlier finishing leg. There were different reasons why other people didn't want her leg so I gladly said I'd do it. I first got scared when one of the male runners from the club who is very speedy said to me 'don't worry if you have to walk some of the hills.' I hadn't realised it was this tough...
Her leg was a 10.5 mile leg, and notoriously the hardest of the 6. It was also the leg our club usually gives to the 'strongest' runner of the team, which she definitely was. I was probably one of the weaker members of today's team and I'm not being over modest here.
So off I went, and the goal was for me to start slow and see if I could speed up. Until mile 7.5 where 'the climb' began.
Please ignore the red- the above is a graph I found online made by someone who previously did the race and the red is his heart rate. But the green is the elevation for the race. As you can see, from 7.5-10.something miles, there is a continual, and extremely steep climb.
Anyway, up till here is a mix of twisty turny roads with some short sharp climbs but on the whole fairly level. I started at the back of the field reasoning being this is a club only invitational event and loads of these runners had done this race many times and were quite strong. Also the tendency for stronger runners to be given this leg, last thing I wanted was to go off too fast trying to keep up with them and then die.
I reeled in people from miles 1-7 slowly but surely, and by mile 7 I had passed 3 ladies and 2 men. I focussed on keeping the pace feeling easy as I knew I had to save some of my legs to be wrecked later on.
8:18, 8:14, 8:25, 8:29, 8:19, 8:08, 8:01. I felt really strong even though I could tell I was getting a bit sunburnt already on Costa del Arran and was pretty dehydrated. Legs felt great.
But I knew the big one was coming. At about 7.5 the climb started suddenly and before I knew it I was passing another couple of men who'd given in to walking. I managed to run without walking myself for quite a bit, though it was the kind of steep that makes your thighs burn and your lungs ache. The views were stunning but after half a mile of climb I, along with everyone else, was feeling the pain.
Miles 8 and 9 went by and I was still running but only just. The hill was long, straight and steep, and you could see for miles ahead which just made it torture. Obviously I slowed down but not horrendously. 9:23, 10:08 for these miles.
However around 9.5 I had to concede to some walking as I was pretty much bent double, breathing rapidly, and in so much pain. I adopted a walk 20, run 20 paces strategy which I vowed to keep up until I reached the 10 mile mark. I did this and passed another man who was walking, and then reached a guy I had vaguely met as he is from my hometown and runs in my parents' club. He looked like he was seriously struggling. I caught up to him and told him I was doing run/walk and would he like to join me. He said yes and managed to keep up with me for the next half mile and before I knew it we were at
Carter- I tried to read your report but it takes me to a page asking me to login to wordpress which I can't do. I would love to read it! Have a look and see if you can fix at all...
Carl- a nightmare but hey ho it happened, what can you do. Your run sounds great. How's the weather in Ireland? All the family there with you I take it?
7.4 miles at 8:50 pace tonight with the club. A pack run but everyone running at different paces. This felt fairly easy which was good. Going to the Isle of Arran on Saturday as part of the club's female team for a round island relay race. I'm doing a 9 mile leg which is VERY hilly. Waaaah.
Robert- nice one on your prize. Great work. You should be proud.
I know there are lots of events where women take part in large numbers. What puzzles me is the types of events I was at on Monday. Slightly 'serious' club runner events where most people are in vests and maybe the distances are not so common as 5k, 10k etc... women seem to be put off coming to these. Despite the fact that most of them (certainly the one I was at on Monday) are super friendly, there is a big push on the 'no time is too slow' attitude, etc. Clubs like my own have a huge female cohort yet there were only 2 of us who went to the event. I am not quite sure what needs to be done but I do think that some running events still have a 'laddish' or 'macho' feel and it's a shame if women are put off.
Well I didn't get my 14 miles done yesterday. Left my house to go do these and saw my car had been wheel clamped and taped up making me look like a criminal. I hadn't paid my tax disc. Basically when I bought my car off my dad last year I thought he'd taxed it for a year but it was only 6 months.
So I go online and see what I need to do. Need to tax it but haven't had any tax reminders. Strange. Go to find my V5C registration doc but don't seem to have one. Strange. Phone the DVLA to see if I can tax it without the VC5 and the official answer is 'no' but I put on my best upset voice saying I can't wait the 2-4 weeks for a new one to come through as my car is clamped outside my flat and I will lose money from not being able to work etc.... very nice chap agrees to tax it for me over the phone. Yes. Takes my details and it turns out the reason I have not received any reminders and didn't get sent a V5C when I got my car was that my dad sent off the new owner document with the wrong address on it for me. Hahaha. So all the stuff was being sent to the building next door instead of me. You have to laugh.
Anyway, I pay the tax, plus arrears and a penalty charge, then call the pound, pay them 100 big ones, and bob's your uncle. Two hours and £200 later I have my car back. Some laugh... not.
I still got out and ran but it was a quick 3 miles before work, I did 8 short hill reps in Kelvingrove park and rather enjoyed the stress relief of it.
Lesson of the day, be more aware of your car stuff, not like me. 14 miles will wait until maybe Sunday.