First things first, it was off to the Village Green to sign on. I was surprised to see that over 30 people had come out to take part. Mainly families but some more serious looking athletes too. It was then time to walk up to the start. Yes up! The start was at the top of a steep hill. Me and Mum stood near the back of the pack, as we knew we'd be among the slowest, as we are still only used to doing interval training - our longest run to date is only 9 minutes.
After a quick briefing the Mayor blew his whistle and we were off. Mikey had to weave through the kids and families but by the time he was at the bottom of the hill I could see he was in 2nd position (that was the last I saw of him till the end). Me and Mum were still near the back with about 10 people behind us.
Down into the village and the crowds and our neighbours were out in force. Heckling already. Then it was up through the village and down the next dip back out. Things so far were feeling OK but I realised I had forgot to start the Garmin. Oops!
The next bit was a very steep climb. It's not long but its steep so me and Mum had decided (pre race) that we would walk it. Whilst walking we were overtaken by a man and his young lad. At the top we started to run again but I soon started feeling slightly breathless and my legs were already empty. I couldn't maintain the jog. I had to stop. I told Mum to carry on and I walked behind her. I glanced at my Garmin. It was stopped. Noooooo! It was all going horribly wrong!
When I felt more composed I chased her back down, putting on a sprint to catch her. Thankfully by the time I caught her she was ready for a breather. We had now overtaken the chap and his son. We walked for a little while, being heckled by the marshalls - one of whom even tried to send us the wrong way!
A glance at my Garmin.... again it had stopped! Grrrr!
Another little jog and again we were spent. This was far from fun, my chest felt tight and I was really struggling. I really hadn't prepared myself for this. My lungs have never really been a problem so far in my running adventures, but I was gasping for breath. I guess we don't usually have people to chat to along the way so I wasn't getting adequate oxygen. (I had a chat to all the spectators, marshalls and any other people we passed.)
Right! Now we were back on our usual running patch. I could do this! A concerted effort was made to keep running. But this time my Mum was ready to stop. A brief stop and then it was all downhill to the last field. The marshalls were now doing a great job at encouraging.
The finish line was on the field of the Village Hall - but first we had to do a lap of the field. I have never run offroad before.... but apart from it being long grass with a slight climb, it wasn't too bad. People were cheering. Mikey was waiting and he ran alongside egging me on to sprint but I didn't have any sprint in me. My Mum was now about 30 secs behind me. (She had stopped but I had spurred her on telling her we had never run this far).
Just before the line everyone was cheering for me to sprint. I couldn't. My lungs were in serious pain. I could taste blood in the back of my throat. I could only just muster the energy to continue my plod.
I made it though!
|Our Medals. (Mikeys shoulda been silver though!)|
At least there is room for improvement next year. ;-)