Tuesday 28 July 2009

Strayed over to Harrogate.

Generally speaking, I enjoy my running, otherwise why would I keep on doing it? But racing is a different matter. It hurts, so apologies to my longsuffering partner if I wake up a bit crabby on race days. As I got out of bed on Sunday and drew back the curtains it didn't augur well for the Harrogate 10K race at 10.30 that morning. The weather was diabolical driving over Greenhow (often is) but appeared brighter over towards the golf balls. By the time we parked up by Valley Gardens, behind a white Porsche, the rain was reduced to a very slight drizzle which thankfully stopped altogether during the race.
It's a popular race and possibly attracted more runners this year with the modified course that cuts out the long climb up Penny Pot Lane. While noseying round the Entries table we noted that race numbers had exceeded the 700 mark. A girl called Ali from one of the Running forums came to introduce herself before the start, one of those rare runners who doesn't possess a runner's watch to time herself. She had a running bottle she didn't drink out of very much. "It's just that I have to have something in my hand" she said.
There were an awful lot of people lined up in front of the 35 minute marker, so thought I'd join them! Consequently, I was off to a good start when the hooter sounded and ran a quickish first mile (for me) before settling into my race pace. This was my first 10K race since Meltham in January where I'd run a pathetic 52.24, and I was determined to get inside the 50 minute mark to restore my confidence and move up the MV75 rankings for the year. The two lap course was slightly undulating, as opposed to hilly, so suited me fine, and I was able to maintain a regular eight minute mile pace throughout. And unlike the Meltham race I still had a bit in hand for a flying finish. I crossed the line in 48.05, so was happy with that. Also, for the first time in a while, I managed to sneak into the top half of the field, 259th from 606 finishers, to take the MV70 prize. My partner was 3rd Lady over 60 (of 12) a full 16 minutes behind Carol Wolstenholme of Hallamshire Harriers. Full results here.
There was one drawback. Although it felt perfectly OK during and after the race, my Rt calf muscle woke me up at 3 o'clock in the morning with a series of nasty little twinges. After lathering it with Arnica and popping an Ibuprofen I later went for a very steady 4 mile jog to see how it reacted. It twinged a few times around the two mile mark but felt mainly OK, but I'm going to have to nurse it a bit before the 13½ mile Lowther Run in two weeks.

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