15th out of 39, 11th male finisher.
Mentally challenging as much as anything else, today was a great experience and I've finished up the year on a reasonably high note. Was excited to be running with Big Robbie Downton, the biggest guy there, and dressed in pink too.
This was a great run, a good mix of fire trails and single track, and a run where I was able to actually keep running for the majority. There was one very steep "Woodford" type hill which was power walked up, and a couple of sections of single track that got congested and not great for running on anyway.
One of the guys behind me told us we hit 10km at 1:06 at which stage I was thinking I was doing ok, I felt pretty good. We were at the bottom of the valley at this point and I was thinking to myself about whether there was going to be any huge hills to come. Very shortly after we started climbing, and soon I was powerwalking, jogging, walking. I think i had a gel at about 1:15.
The HR just shoots up going uphill and it's really hard work. I passed a couple of people and they would then pass me. At the top of the single trail was an aid station that was really busy and I decided to keep going past, which may have been a bad idea because all those people who were getting drinks passed me not too long after.
I just remember this hill that went on and on, I really considered walking here - but the hill wasn't super steep, it just never seemed to end. Added to that I was getting passed continuously which was grinding me down. Eventually I got to another aid station where I sucked down one of the finest tasting gatorades I have ever had in my life, and thanked myself for not choosing to do the 34km. I took off downhill/flat whereas the 34km/42km guys had more of a hill to contend with.
|200m climb from 11km to 14km|
Again this was another grind where I just had to keep my legs turning over, my feet were really starting to feel hot, my big toes in particular. Another aid station and I asked how long I had to go; 4.5km, I said that that was about all I needed. At this stage I was running on my own, the guy in front had gotten away from me and I just had to keep the legs moving. About 35mins later I got to the clearing where we had started and had a huge feeling of relief. Coming down the hill there was a school/uni group tour thing who gave me a cheer as I came running past and I put my hands up all victorious. Crossed the finish line to a bit of a clap from the organisers and other people who were waiting. Looked at my watch and saw 2:41, grabbed a Fanta, looked up and saw Rob sitting there too! WTF? Turns out his calves were shot, damn Crossfitters think doing wod's the day before a long run is a good idea.
Good fun and will need to get up there for some training runs. Anyone else?
|When I was still smiling|