Monday, 7 November 2011

End of School Party

That's what the general feel of Glen Ogle Ultra had about it.  I had no clue of what to expect from this race at all, except for the fact that we ran across that big Viaduct and followed a few cycle paths. Must be flat route then i thought. hmmm

After arriving through the fog we soon found a gaggle of Ultra runners, all the usual suspects were there, some in kilts. It really was a bit of a party mood. We picked up our numbers from the ever smiley Julie, who seems omnipresent at Ultras these days.
Although the forecast was for weather to be pretty damn perfect at 8am it was pretty damn cold so i decided to start off in my jacket, buff and gloves. Here's me sandwiched between Chris & Ian, i appear to the the incredibly shrinking girl and look like i belong in Gulliver's Travels, never mind Glen Ogle.

Again at the start i look like a Lilliput reject.....

Wasn't too long before I'd stripped down to my vest though, it's ok, i kept my shorts on too. Not knowing the course and with it being an *odd* distance i had no real expectations of time, i was just out to enjoy the scenery and savour the last ultra of the year. And wow, what scenery.

I ran for a bit with Mark Keddie who was chatting to another bloke. Mark took off wee while later and i was left with other bloke. Turns out he is new race Director of Highland Fling. Hello John if your reading this. The climb up to where this pic was taken was brutal, didn't stop Yakhunter running past us walking up it though.

We ended up running the entire race together, yakking pretty much the whole way.He did make me laugh a few times when asking (when crossing viaduct) if this had been an old railway. That was joke of day after that.  The miles just ticked along nicely and i adored the forest section even though it was bit slippy in parts. I'd worn road shoes instead of trail ones and for most of it that was fine, just couple wee bits in forest that i nearly ended up on bum.  The sun had been on our backs as we headed out and as we descended down the Glen into the fog the temperature took bit of dip, we were soon climbing again though and back up towards the sunshine.  We came back down towards road from forrest quicker than expected, clearly neither of us are good at maths or our brains werent functioning when trying to work out how far we had left to run.  As we crossed the viaduct again we were slowly passing random people here and there. Passed Colin Knox and told him off for going off too fast again but i think he'd hurt his foot somewhere along way.

Route was great as were the Marshall's, only one point where we got bit confused was the upside down arrow, neither me not John wanted to make the decision that may or not get us lost so we waited til more runners came along. Soon enough another 5 or so came along, no one else had clue either, lol. Map out, still clueless. Decision made to go right and off we went. Met Kerry from Strathearn Harriers here, her words were "it better be bloody right way or I'll cry"   We ran together for bit and i found out it was her first Ultra, she had a determined head on and was doing great, determined not to stop. Another guy was with us around here who'd ran whole way, impressive. I walked as soon as i saw a hill. Don't tell Ian though, he told me to run whole way :o/
About 3 miles from the end Lorna caught us up, she said she'd been chasing us for miles and was happy to eventually catch us. We all stayed together til the end. As we saw the the last arrow pointing up a hill the general consensus was *fuck* but it was only a teeny hill which led to a lovely downhill where we saw 2 Marshall's pointing us across a bridge and warning us it was slippy. It wasn't just slippy, it was shooogly too. Love this pic where I'm holding on for dear life but it actually looks like I'm stopping Lorna & John from going past me!
Nice wee downhill sprint and we made it finish. 5hr 4mins. I guess if i hadn't faffed around taking pics and we hadn't waited on other runners we'd have got under 5 but i wasn't too bothered tbh.

Pub was jumping when we arrived for soup & drinks, and it was nice to chat properly to Kerry and congratulate her on her first Ultra, she was a bit cheerier by then ;)  Great to catch up with everyone in pub, everyone seemed to be of same view, great race, great scenery, and i reckon most will be back for more next year.

Superb Race, a must do. Well done Bill & Mike and all the marshalls.

Oh, and it wasn't flat....nope

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Too busy to blog?

I could use that excuse. I mean, I'm up at 5am run to work which has been pretty damn busy of late. But if truth be told I'm just too lazy. Yesterday i had to hot foot it to meeting in Linlithgow,checked with Ops Manager if i could come in running gear and he said yes. So all the other managers turn up in suits and theres me in hot pink vest and shorts. We were provided with usual tea/coffee/water etc and the most enormous pieces of cake ever. When i commented to chef who brought it through he told me i clearly needed feeding! cheeky bugger.

I somehow managed to clock up 207miles in October. I guess starting on the 1st with a 30mile run on WHW was good footing, if you'll excuse the pun. That was meant to be last long run before Glen Ogle but i ended up doing to Linlithgow to Edinburgh run to, just because. Looking back on training log that's 4th time this year I've gone over 200miles so i reckon I'll at least equal last years mileage but after Glen Ogle there are no plans at all really.

Weekends have been super hectic of late, Richie & Helen's wedding last weekend was just superb. Everything from the lovely service to the food and the ceilidh band were just superb.Honeymoon was kept a big secret, i do hope Helen hasn't left it to Richie or she'll be sleeping in some bothy in the wilderness somewhere. I think you'll agree they look supremely happy.

Managed to find myself a fabulous pair of shoes to go with my dress, most people were dubious I'd be able to walk in them little less dance. Oh ye have little faith.

With them being brand new though i decided i should pack a
comfortable pair to wear should i need them later.  I managed from 9am til about 8ish i think, had about 3 ceilidh dances in them then decided that if i wanted to run in morning then I'd best go for more sensible option so i nipped upstairs to and changed.

It wasn't my shoes that caused the problems though, it was Ian's, we danced so much that his soles fell off! lol He took them to the concierge who went into his little room and glued them together again, but no luck. Luckily Ian had shoes upstairs he could change into, no not my red ones, just a plain black pair. Although if we followed the priest's advice during the service he'd have came back wearing the red ones...

Many many dances later and many drinks later plans were made, goodbyes were said and we all headed off to bed. Most of the gang were meeting at 11am to run but because Ian was heading off to see the boys we decided to run at 9am before heading back for breakfast. It was an stunning morning and we had a glorious 5 miles along St Andrews beach before heading back for breakfast.

This was the view from breakfast room, pretty amazing.

Pretty Amazing weekend in fact. Many Congratulations Mr&Mrs Cunningham and thank you for letting us share your special day.


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...