Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Reasons to be cheerful

Cant stay sad for long, it's not in my DNA ;)

I fed up this morning after being back at work and managing full day without any aggro on ankle, for once i took regular breaks to get weight off, but i woke up this morning to even more pain and lump on ankle even after elevating it soon as i was home.

But... been doing paperwork most of day and *fingers crossed* I'm on mend again.

So, reasons to be cheerful

1. The Botanic Gardens 5k takes place today, this was my first ever race. 6 years ago.
2. Before the race and after training for it for 5weeks i said i was never running again.
3. Then i got a medal
4. And wanted to enter another race
5. So i entered Loch Ness 5k! lol
6. Then was persuaded to change it 10k, took lot of persuasion though.
7. I have a superb relationship.
8. I have fantastic friends
9. I'll run again, some people aren't so lucky.
10. The sun is Shining

Fed up.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Looking Back, moving Forward

One week on. This time last week I'm trying to remember where i was. I'm thinking it was probably around the Glen Bogle area, or Ben Fogle as my crew kept calling it!

My recovery is most odd. As i said in earlier ramblings my legs and feet in no way are affected my a silly 95mile run across Scotland , if only i could say the same about my ankles. The left one is the worst but the right one is also sore.I'm so used to recovering so well and so quickly after Ultras that i keep forgetting I've actually injured myself this time and it's not just fatigue or DOMS. My mind is saying, your'e fine, you can walk. My legs and feet are willing, my ankles doth protest!
 I've now run out of Tramadol and didn't manage to get to doctors, not great but Ian came back with drugs from pharmacist that has *can be addictive* slapped across box, so i hope they kick in soon!

I guess going a ball on Thursday night wasn't cleverest idea. I did wear heels until i got there otherwise I'd had tripped on my dress, but i kicked them off once i was sat down. Actually glad we went, i really needed to get out house. Shame we couldn't get room in Glasgow due to Take That concert though!

Before the WHW race I'd saw a great deal for Spa Day and booked not one but 2 of them, plan was to use one with Jem and one with Ian  It was for Norton House and I've mentioned before that so far it's Mine & Jemima's favourite Spa to date. So yesterday i took Ian along for his first Spa Day. This is the man who cant sit still for more than 10mins and thinks relaxing is going for 10mile *wee walk* So it was a bit of a culture shock for him and he look terrified as we arrived. lol. He actually ended up really enjoying it, we both did. Just what we needed and we left there totally chilled out and literally glowing.  Back there soon with Jemima.

So looking back, was there something i could've done differently? Nope, it's not something I've had issues with before and not something i can prevent. I've actually been very lucky regarding injuries and ever since my back problems 5yrs ago and looking at how i train/run I've managed to avoid picking up anything. My recovery after races is almost prompt which makes me think i do things correctly. I'm a big believer in listening to my body and if i feel tired/not quite right then i rest, end of.

Moving forward, no idea how long it'll be before i can resume training, or even get back to gym. Couldn't even swim yesterday at the Spa, we appear to need our ankles quite a lot! ;) Hoping to see doc on Monday so i can get physio referral and take it from there.

I've loved reading all the WHW blogs, from both sides of the coin, inspirational and funny spring to mind. Still few missing so get blogging folks!

Onwards and forwards (albeit a slow shuffle)

I'm off back to my peas, the frozen variety, not the black eyed ones......

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

The Aftermath

We were at finish for around 20mins, and after chatting to to Mags and few other we decided to head back to the cottage seeing as Gavin was lying on floor sleeping by this point hahahaIt was then Susan noticed her fleece was missing, it has car key in it, ooops. Minor hitch and disaster averted when we recovered it from runner who'd come in just before me and had picked it up in her dazed and confused state. ...

I headed to door and when the fresh air hit me i suddently started to feel room spinning. Next thing i remember is waking up on mat behind screen with worried faces staring over me and Sean talking to me, although i have no clue as to what he was saying. It would appear that i fainted. Crikey.

I had to stay there for around 30mins i think an

d had to persuade Sean to let me go as i was starting to fall asleep and wouldve preferred to be in my bed instead of mat on floor. Ian took me home and put me to bed and i think i went out like a light. He was back and forth from seeing people in to coming and checking on me, poor Ian, he mustve been bloody exhausted.

I got up at 10am and hobbled downstairs, Nick had gone out for breakfast

supplies so i went for shower. Felt much better after that and was managing to get around at least. What i've forgotten to mentioned is that it was Gavin's Birthday on Saturday.For someone to give up thier weekend like that on thier birthday is something special. I'd thought ahead though and we'd got him a birthday cake and some happyG candles. I also got thank cards for all my crew. (jules,

i've still got yours) I wish i hadnt written them before i left for race but i cant put into words just how how wonderful they all were. I couldn't have wished for a better crew and thank them from bottom of my heart. You all are just bloody brilliant.

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So after singing Happy Birthday and getting Gav to make a wish we tucked into some cake for breakfast.Nick had bought an array of goodies from shops but i couldnt eat anything, my throat was rea

lly sore, weird. I had a crabbies instead. We headed off to prizegiving fairly early as i wanted to get seat near front so i didnt have to hobble far.  It was great to see everyone and to watch everyone in the various degrees of *walking*

Again i thought i'd be more emotional picking up my goblet, i was Happy, dont get me wrong. But i still couldnt shake off the sense of disapointment, crazy i know! I came 59th out of 113 finishers. Think there were around 40 DNF's  This makes me feel guilty about feeling disapointed, god knows it's a brave decision to pull out when you've worked so damn hard for something.

I spent a full year concentrating and training for this race, i guess it just a whole comedown thing?

My crew were all heading off after the ceremony and i was very sad to see them go, maybe celebrating with them wouldve brough out my inner happiness, which IS there. It was great to catch up with everyone though, as soon as Marco saw my leg he said "you've got Marcoitis!" He said that it looked exactly same as injury he has and to not let hospital or doctor confuse it with cellulitis. Good advice. Was so happy For Debs coming 3rd Lady, she is my inspiration,
 we headed back to cottage soon after. Ian was completely exhausted having been up since start of race practically, at least i'd had a nights sleep. Alarm was set for 6pm so we could head along and meet everyone for drinkies.

I came out shower and sat down to check a few of the many messages id got during the race. Suddenly i was overcome with emotion and just broke down. Ian was outside on phone at time and looked in window alarmed. He came in and i sobbed my heart out on his shoulder for about 10mins. Then i had to try and make myself look presentable to go meet everyone!

We got there about 8 only to find long wait for food so we headed off with Sean and his OH for a chinese, hadnt realised how hungry i was til then. Back to pub and i managed to get round and talk to everyone i think, it was lovely night and we were there til throwing out time.Muriel had given me strict instructions to keep leg elevated and Julie (of watching the trails fame) kindly kept my feet on her knees to ease the pain a bit.
 Few hardcore folk headed to station bar but Ian was knackered so we headed home. It was here i had my first champagne, out of my goblet of course.

We heaed off to bed soon after but a few hours later i was awake and in severe pain, i'd slept with pillows under my feet but i woke up in agony. I hobbled to toilet to look for painkillers but realised they were downstairs. So i went back to bed. I was up several times after that crying and hobbling around. Ian said he's call Doctor Chris for advice as soon as it was a half decent time. After speaking to Chris he advised me to go to to A&E and he'd call them to expect me.

I got seen pretty much straight away, once consultant saw me he said i was staying in. My heart sank. They wanted to rule out compartment syndrome which is quite serious as you can lose limbs, ok, very serious... they gave me 5 different tablets to take and about 20mins later i was seeing stars and talking rubbish. I wasn;t in pain though, so all was good in the world

I was taken down to ward a wee while later, still spaced out my head. Ian had to go buy jammies for me (i dont own any!) and go collect my washbag, get me magazines etc We had planned to go out with Karen & George for dinner and i was gutted!  I slept on and off for most off day and was delighted to get visit from Karen & George(&Ian) later on in afternoon.Doctor Chris also popped in to see me, he took some pics of me and was excited about getting home and seeing them on big screeen lol. I asked him if i'd end up on big screen at next talk and he said probably.
 Ian came back in the evening before heading off for dinner with K&G, i wanted to stick pillows under the covers and sneak out but i wasnt allowed.

Had rubbish sleep, waking every hour, probably down to hospital noises and weird feeling of bed being elevated mnore than anything. Consultant came to see me at 9am and said i could go home :o)
Also got visited by charge nurse who told me tales of feel running and of another nurse who is featured in feet in clouds! He was next to come and see me and was very modest about it when i asked him about it. Interesting hospital!

Ian came to pick me up around 10.30 and we had to wait on my prescription before we could go. It was releif to get out there, to not be in pain (thanks to the drugs)and to be able to walk albeit a bit slowly.

Luckily i'd booked this week off work, so i'm resting up. You'll have noticed i hadnt asked the doctors when  could run again. I'll just listen to my wee body and decide that for myself.

I have a goblet, i  bloody well earned it and i'll be back next year.

I want to thank Susan, Gavin, Nick  & Jules for just being the best support crew i could ever have hoped for, i love you all and cant wait til next year. And Ian, for putting so much into my training, for sacrificing your own running to get me to where i needed to be, I love you.

Kinlochleven to Fort William.

I thanked Doctor Chris for patching me up and when he asked if there was anything else he could give m

e i asked if he had any morphine "yes" he said" but you're not getting any!"
Oh well, nothing ventured and all that.... I left all patched up, thanked the Marshall's and said a cheery goodbye to everyone. I was in high spirits despite my excruciating pain.

I felt sorry for Gavin as i knew I'd not be able to run at all this section, walking was painful enough and the terrain is probably hardest in whole route. I couldn't lift my left leg very high so avoiding boulders rocks and even tiny stones was difficult, each bash reverberated through my legs and up to my knees.

This was going to be a long haul. I was somehow managing to hold off people passing me and was only passed by 3 people here, one who i overtook later on, god knows how.  We kept on seeing twinkling lights and it soon became clear it was mountain rescue blokes. There were 3 sets of them on the 7 mile section to Lundavra! We didn't need anything from them but they were so nice and offered us stuff each time and were most encouraging, telling us we were amazing. Gavin quickly chipping in he wasn't (but he was)  I wasn't for stopping at all so it was hi and bye and thanks for great job from me. Putting my head torch on was a bit of a low point for me. I hadn't intended on wearing it again if i'd finished in my 23hrplan but hey ho, get moving Sandra and harden the fuck up/

Took forever til we smelt the bonfire, and i was so happy to get to Lundavra.Took us 3 long hours though, painful, excruciatingly so. Everyone was in high spirits here though and it totally lifted my spirits like you wouldn't believe. Nick and Susan were here but i only saw Nick as there was no way i was stopping now, keep moving forward. It was last thing KarenD had said to me as she ran down to hug me before the start.

Had bit of banter with the Marshall's and Elaine (Donalds wife) shouted at me just as i was leaving up the hill so had a shouty conversation with her too lol Off we went up hill until a Marshall ran after us saying Ian was just parking up to see me before i left. I almost cried here. Was so good to see him. Think it put his mind at rest too to see me still smiling. He said he'd see me at finish and was so proud of me and i blubbed a bit and soldiered on.

The steps down through the forest and beside the water were so so painful. Too big to just step off, they need a jump, not great on bone crushing ankles. The climbs we rent quite so bad, but i knew it was a long long descent. I kept asking Gavin the mileage, how far, what time? etc. Poor Gavin. I remember him saying we were at mile 5 so it was one to Brave heart Car park then one along road.

That mile, omg. I had Gavin wandering all over path and almost falling down gully's, and me persistently saying this must be a mile by now, SURELY TO GOD. Brave heart car park, what a glorious sight. Susan & Nick, even more glorious. I'm getting emotional typing this now.

There wasn't much talking, i was too busy deep breathing which I'd been doing for past 7 miles trying to breath through the pain. It kept giving me hiccups though which made me laugh at least. Talk about conflicting emotions. One mile to go. I kept looking for the 30mph sign, i knew it was halfway. I expected to running past this of course but here i was walking, i was a bit gutted. Got round corner to see Ian coming towards us, he took my hand and said i was nearly there.

I couldn't even run those last few steps, not due to tiredness, i was fine. My legs still had life in them, my mind was alert, my feet were bit sore but no blisters or anything. Those damn ankles. I got into the Leisure centre, got kiss from Ian and hugs and kisses from all my super fabulous crew.

After all that i almost had a sense of disappointment, i cant quite describe it. Could it have been that i hadn't managed a run for the last 14miles? not my idea of finishing a race, or was it the pain was overcoming me? i have no idea, i felt a bit emotionless compared to how i felt the previous 2 years as support crew.

Devil's Staircase To Kinlochleven

I felt pretty good at bottom of Devil weirdly, better than i did when i climbed it during the Devil race, most odd considering I'd ran about 75mile by then! 

Yes my ankles were hurting but i knew i had broken the back of this race and wouldn't throw in towel now. Quick hugs from Gav and Susan and off we went on the climb up. We steadily climbed and seemed to get there in a

reasonable time, Nick was so happy to be there, he kept looking round and smiling and singing songs all the way.

On the descent down towards that fabled town i really started to hurt. Only way to describe my ankle is that it felt like someone had taken a sledgehammer to both of them, every step felt bone crushing. I was still running nonetheless. Mountain Rescue gave me some paracetamol and i plodded on. Don't think it came near to hitting spot and by time we got off the rougher ground and onto  the easy track that never ever leads to Kinlochleven i was well and truly fucked. Sorry it's only way to describe it. The terrain wasn't exactly accomodating here as you all know.

My mind was was willing, even my legs and feet were fine. You've no idea the frustration i felt when Lorna M ran past me, i said well done of course but i was gutted that i couldn't even run a few steps by then. Bone crushing baby steps were all i could manage. My body/my legs and my head were all willing, i could've cried with the hopelessness of it all, but i didnt. I didn't because i had Nick still singing to me.. I had everything from the Killers, to Sclub, to Gilbert & Sullivan? to the bay city rollers. hahaha the guy is a loony and i love him muchly. I got running commentary as to why he was choosing these songs. Time to embarrass Nick by saying his Mum used to dress him up in Tartan and get sing bye bye baby, baby bye.... lol   He chose Bucks Fizz as it was one of his wife's favourites (sorry Sarah, i know you'll be mortified by that!)She is biggest Killers fan in world, in doesn't comprehend... ;)

About a mile from Painlochleven we met a worried looking Gavin. Last time he'd saw us i was looking sprightly and going strong.. Clearly I'd lost a lot of time here with my baby steps and limited running. I told him to ask doc for something to patch me up, and he ran off to get ready.

I hobbled into Community Centre announcing my ankles had been smashed by a sledgehammer. Doctor Chris leapt into action. I got put onto treatment bed and assessed. "ouch, you've got some Angry Tendons there Sandra" he said." It must be pretty painful."  I had lumps in front of both ankles, most alarming.

As all this was going on my super crew were force feeding me, Susan reminding me to eat my noodles, drink my tea, eat my elevenses bar... lol

 I complied, cause they know best. I told Doctor Chris i was carrying on, he didn't try and stop me. He said the damage was already done anyway and that it would be painful but he'd patch me up best he could to get me those last 14miles.  JK arrived and plonked himslef on bed next to me. He was as cheerful as ever and we joked and laughed as we were patched up/iced up. Chris was certainly being kept on his toes and getting my crew to help patch JK up too. Kartina was trying to force chips down me at this stage too lol.

I kept watching the clock as i watched not only my sub23plan disappear but also the back up sub24. I spent nearly an hour in there getting treatment and was getting ants in my pants and was eager to leave. It was time was planC. Get me to the finish line.

Beinglas to Devils Staircase

So i arrived at Beinglas probably a tad grumpy but left happy and this carried me on to Glen Bogle. Although my ankles/knees were hurting more i just wanted to get there to see my crew again.

Even the usual cowpat pit wasn't as bad as usual, or was it? i dunno i knew my crew weren't far away. And i was right, there ahead of me was Nick, he ran down to meet me and find out what i wanted. I chased after him and arrived to an amazing cup of tea and another 2 wee rolls.There was nice wee crowd there shouting encouragement too, this is great boost. Nick & Susan walked with me to the picnic table until i finished my tea then i ran off saying I'd see them in few miles with another spring in my step.

The descent down to the road seemed to take forever, i passed someone going up who said "hi Sandra, only mile to go til crossing" sorry, i don't know who it was, say hello if your reading!

Took ages to cross road, traffic was pretty heavy. Again i knew this was me close to seeing crew again and i was happy.
Nick ran to meet me again i told him i didn't want to stop, that I'd pick things up in Tyndrum instead. I had to stop and get weighed but it wasn't for long and i was off again knowing I'd see them in 3 short miles.

It was also a boost to know I'd almost made it to Fling end having pulled out of that.

Got to Tyndrum to find a party going on, music was blaring. I danced to Reach for the stars with my crew and felt so happy. I had change of top, ate a roll, drank a red bull and had a cup of tea, all in 6 mins!

I left there full of beans in 12hrs23mins.  I love the section to BoO, and i knew i was picking up my first support runner here too (Susan) so i ran pretty much all of it. Smiling all the way.Donald was having wee break at station and i gave him quick hug and he said "you've caught me again you wee bugger!"
 Gavin ran out to meet me, i heard him before i saw him "dont stop movin" of course! He got some strange looks from a couple of walkers as he ran past them down the hill with me in hot pursuit singing to Sclub7

 Took me 1hr25 to get there and i was again surprised and delighted to see Ian. He told me JohnK was 20mins ahead of me, i was pretty shocked and knew he mustve been having a tough race in that case. Ian told me i was going great and to get moving, so i did! :) With Susan leading the way i ran when she ran, she told me "I'm going to do what you do to me and run when you can, and walk the ups"
ok, i'm happy with that. Here we are at famous Flag of Murdo's!

Not keen on the Rannoch Mor section at all, i find it rather bleak and sore on the feet. My ankles were hurting a bit again but i wanted to get this section over with soon as possible. Susan was brilliant, kept telling me we were going to catch person in front, kept looking behind to see if anyone was catching us to boost me on a bit. I kept thinking back to what Ian had said to me about that part too, that he knew if he ran strong and kept going over there he knew he'd get to end. I kept that in my head wherever i could and was somehow managing 10mm at times.We chatted the whole time and it seemed to pass much quicker thn i've remembered before.

 Passed Andy Cole here and had wee chat but soon left him, then it was with great surprise that we passed JohnK , i thought he was still way ahead, we'd spotted someone we thought was him. I was sad to see him as i knew it meant his race wasnt going to plan. He told me i was running really well and was as encouraging as ever, not many people can do that when they're having rubbish time themselves.  Katrina passed us soon after on way out to meet him so i knew this would give him a boost, and it did as he passed us on last bit leading up to Ski Centre.

I checked into race control  in 16hrs40 and kept going down road, Saying goodbye to fab Susan who ran in to get supplies and hello to lovely Nick was as excited as a 5yr old at Christmas time. My ankles were really hurting here but i knew it was short distance to Kinghouse so kept going. Nick was staying slightly ahead of me and singing, happy as a happy thing.

I found the tarmac section after Kinghouse incredibly painful on my ankles and walked all of it bar a few steps. Did run walk until i got to bottom of Devil where i passed yet again by Michelle! lol  Got to bottom of Devil 17hrs50 so it had taken my a long 1hr 10 from Glencoe, the longest its ever taken me and a good 15mins more than scheduled. .....

Milngavie to Beinglas

The run through the precinct was amazing, so many people cheering and shouting, so many people shouting my name i had no idea who it was. I was teary and smiley and excited.
I ran with Donald for first mile or 2 and he set off ahead, i knew I'd see him again at some point, i always do ;) I was trying to be very aware of not just following the pack after Ian's warnings of people taking wrong turns  (including him!)and after a wee while i was running with Michelle who told me she'd been chasing me for a bit after starting off too slow. She was moaning about her headtorch being crap so i just said stay with me then and we'll be fine. We were chatting so much i hadn't even noticed Phil was just in front of me, we overtook him just after that and didn't see him again.

We chatted away and the miles just flew by, before too long we were at beech tree inn(1hr12) and first sighting of SuperSantacrew. Was such a boost to see them and i ran on with big smile on face. The first section is pretty easy (i never said that when i did that section in relay only 2yrs ago!)with mostly flats and fair amount of tarmac. I was still running with Michelle but managed to chat a

bit to Norry and to met Mark Cooper here too. Again those miles flew by and suddenly we were on the hill to Drymen. Said cheery hello to a Marshall before realising it was Ian lol!He told me i was doing great, Gave him quick kiss and ran on and over road where my crew were all in their Santa hats cheering me on and checking to see if i needed anything but i just wanted to keep going. &nb

sp;Got to Drymen 2.07  not far off  target and bang on time we'd done the head torch run few weeks previous. Difference this time was i was feeling great.

Michelle had stopped for her crew but caught up with me heading up to forest section along with Norry.It was certainly a relief to not have to climb over trees like previous time we'd been there, although i knew they'd been cleared.  Again time passed quickly and soon enough we were going through the gate and getting our first sighting of conic hill. As we passed a fair amount of tents i remarked to Michelle that whoever was inside must be wondering what hell was going on outside at 3am!  It mustve been dark when the front runners came through there and i suspect anyone in a tent mustve been slightly freaked out!

Climb up Conic hill was wet, Michelle got to top and i think bounced down like a ball, as i couldn't even see her ahead. As much as i was taking it easy due to slippery conditions i overtook a few folk here. Nick had run out to see what i wanted at CP, was great to see him and he took off to get everything ready. I came out to  find car park packed full and tons of folks cheering, another quick kiss from Ian and Susan led me to  crew car. Arrived at car and  had seat ready as i needed to change my socks, i was convinced i had stone in shoe or sock as my big toe was sore. They had Sclub7 blaring from ipod (my request, lol)and were all Santa'd up! Had wee pot rice and cup tea, change of socks and i was off again. I arrived there 3hr43 and left 3hr48 again i was bit behind schedule but i wasn't too worried about it, as long as i was enjoying race i was happy.

Changed my shirt and off i went towards Rowardennan with smile and spring in my step thanks to my super crew

Funny, the climbs never seemed so bad. I kept recalling what KeithH had said in the whw forums, saying "if you're not enjoying it, you're going too fast" I kept that thought firm in my head. Again Michelle caught me a mile or so down road and again we were together for fair few miles. I was enjoying this much more than I'd enjoyed the fling, but then i hadn't feel so i guess that helps! I was in my comfort zone too as I'm used to being awake and running at that time of day so i knew I'd got worst part over with and that I'd cope until end of race.

Got to Rowardennan 5hrs30 and ran right through with crew following me with tea and a roll.Gavin had "don't stop moving" playing on his ipod, you've no idea how much this cheered me up.  I stopped off at Ben Lomond cottage as Lucy who owns the best place on WHW to stay http://www.oak-tree-inn.co.uk/ had left a wee goody bag out for me. How sweet was that?

Cant wait to get back to Oak Tree to thank her personally. Love that place.

I knew that after leaving Rowardennan i wouldn't see my crew for a very long time but i was ok. I was around 30mins behind my schedule but i knew i was still running strong so i wasn't too concerned. I concentrated on moving forward.

My ankles had been giving me wee bit of grief and couldn't figure out why, never had ankle issues before, so i just assumed it was probably due to putting brakes on coming down conic hill. The hard work really starts after RowardennanInversnaid and we spoke about time expectations.  I got to inversnaid to find lots of Happy helpful Marshall's and to find Michelle again. I quickly ate a pot of rice, refilled my bottle and off i went. Followed quickly by Michelle who said to me "fuck me, you re in and out checkpoints  quicker than an F1 car!"

We ran for few miles again until the rock scrambling started and i lost her again. The rocks being so wet made for bit more dangerous climbing this time, i was being very careful around here so as not to end up head first in Loch. Something we'd been chatting about just recently after a training run. Got passed by couple of guys here who both said independently "I'm trying to convince myself i love loch lomondside!"

I felt i'd slowed down a fair bit here and my knee was really hurting, probably a consequence of my ankles? who knows. As i got through last gate and passed where i fell in Fling i knew i was only a mile away from CP. Gt to Beinglas and was delighted to see smiley Mags, and even more delighted to find Ian.Kiss from him and hug from Soph who sprayed me with stuff on my knee and off i went again. I felt strong again somehow and was even running up some of those hills out of there.

Seeing Ian had really given me a boost. And i knew i was on way to see my Super Crew again.

Let's start at the very begining....

So much in my head that it might come out all jumbled up. I'll do this is parts i think as i have to keep taking breaks and elevating legs (all part of the story!)

My lead up to the race had been pretty perfect. I ran to work twice (just 3miles each) to keep ticking over. I felt well rested and ready. Ian cooked dinner on Wed/Thu and  went to supermarket to get the big shop for race stuff. I was left on sofa with orders to rest up. I packed Friday morning, i think Ian was surprised to come back from shops and find me so organised. He normally gives me grief for packing so little for races but this one i knew i had to be super organised, for my crews sake if nothing else!

So i had bags all marked with vests/long sleeved tops/medical/food etc etc Cool bag/ food bag all sorted.I also had a case packed with normal stuff as we were staying in FW for few days after race.  The car was packed like we were away for weeks between the two of us!

We arrived in Milngavie at 3pm. I'd booked a hotel room so i could meet with my crew and have somewhere to chill out until start of race . Ian heard of a tree down on first mile so headed out to check it out and i had bit of snooze. Jules was first to arrive around 4ish, followed by Nick soon after. Ian, Nick & Jules headed down to car to transfer all the race stuff then we headed off for dinner after finding out Susan was stuck in traffic and would meet us there. 

Karen & George arrived and joined us for wee drink then it was back to room to wait to Gavin then head to registration. We headed down there 9pm sharp, plan was to register then head back and get head down for couple hours.
As you can see i was looking for some divine intervention.  Got weighed, got my hospital band aka my race number on , it was remarked upon that i was very calm, and happy. And i was.

Back to hotel where we had tea before having a lie down, trying to sleep in between bouts of hysterical laughter is tough, i guess nerves were starting to creep in.

Gavin had asked what time i wanted to head down to start, i said "12.55" jokingly. We all fell asleep, i woke up around 12.15 thinking we'd missed start, I'd had a dream about that few weeks back and thought it had come true. So had Ian clearly as he called as we were packing up our stuff to say race briefing was about to start! aaaargh panic panic.

Got there in time to hear not a word of what Sean was saying, but I'm sure he said the same as 2 previous years that I'd heard every word , i think weather was mentioned. Quick dash by my crew to get drop bags in and a last minute decision on what jacket to wear and it was time! Team Santa were primed and ready.
 Ok, i was getting nervous now, hugging everyone, getting words of wisdom from old timers, last minute kisses and good lucks, you can do it...

It was time.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011


My mind & body are at war.
On Sunday Ian was racing so had alarm set, i intended to stay in bed til last min, get up and get dressed in 5 mins then leave. Of course i woke up around 6.30, waay before alarm was set.
Yesterday because i'm not gyming it this week i had set my alarm for wee lie in til 5.05 (yes, thats a lie in ok)Only i didn't. Set my alarm for that time that is. Seems i set it for 6.05. Except i woke up at 4.45.
On way home from work yesterday my foot was really hurting, actual pain. It wasn't in my head. Fine once i got home.
After dinner i kept falling asleep on sofa so was packed off to bed at 9pm, I'm usually much tireder on a Monday due to it being first day back at work. Took me wee while to get to sleep considerin i could barely stay awake on sofa but got there eventually. No gym, no run today. Alarm set for a whopping lie in of 5.35
Which is why at 5.36 i'm sitting here dressed and ready for work about to have my 2nd cup of tea.
My body doth protest, it woke up at my normal time of 4.34.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Last race- Corstorphine5

Not ever, just until the race, you know, that one.

Kinda last minute decision made to run it, although i did run to gym and to work i took shortest route i could and took it fairly easy. Work has been pretty good this week, i've turned a huge corner after being there a year and things are finally looking up. I dont want to spoil things by blogging about it just yet though. Count, chickens and all that...

Anyway, off we toddled to Corstorphine after Al kindly sent us directions anyway... Arrived, got numbers found some fellow club folk then went back to car. We had different ideas about warming up. I opted to stay in car. Car=Warm

Ian opted to go for run.

I warmed up the first mile, i wasn't there to win it after all. Nor break any records. In fact the only other 5mile race i'd done was when i'd just started running so unless i got on knees and crawled i knew i'd PB. I also opted for no garmin, or any watch so i'd no idea of my time, i just went out to run basically. I didn't even get told to run a certain time, bit hard when your not wearing a watch, maybe that'll be my new tactic, just dont tell him...

Course was quite undulating, hilly some would say. Weather was pretty perfect for racing and i surprised myself by working quite hard, started overtaking people on mile 2 and carried on picking people off til end. Al overtook me on that first mile & didnt see him again til mile 4 where i kept him in my sights as a wee target, didnt catch him but it kept me focussed. Ian was waaay ahead and had cracking race.

Finished in 38.16. 7.39 pace.

Clearly i dont need a garmin or watch, i just need to actually try and push myself now and again. Yes it would be interesting to see splits as i was passed a lot in first mile but hey ho.Great race though, very well organised and lovely spread after too, well done CAA.

Ran to work next morning, then again this morning. From now til next Friday it will be about just running if i happen to feel like it, perhaps to stop me going potty. Maybe i wont bother, who knows.

I have wine, it's the weekend. :o)


This could be a long blog, but 100 miles is a long way. I've always had a pull to this race for various reasons. I've heard many g...