On the 10th of March I ran The Grizzly. This is a local event 20 ish miles of hills, bogs and pebble beaches. It is extremely popular and people travel from all over to partake. Before the day I was far from confident, due to lack of miles in legs and even contemplated dropping down to the shorter cub run which is 9 miles. The day arrived along with some mad high winds, I went prepared for the long run and for the fact that it was not going to be pretty!
Is it possible to enjoy a run that included long stretches on pebbles, running through freezing cold water, trudging through knee-deep mud and crawling up mountainous hills? It is! I have to admit I enjoyed every single minute of it. (ok maybe not the bit where I sat in the bog and if it hadn’t been for the person behind me heaving me up I am sure I would still be there!) The miles simply flew by. At the top of the Stair Way to Heaven I glimpsed at my Garmin, there followed a quick calculation and I realised that I could be on for a PB, a total surprise and not what I had been aiming for at all, survival was my mind-set! Another mile passed and another calculation, not really believing what I was seeing I wondered if the mud had stopped the Garmin functioning properly! I pushed on and was stunned to cross the finish line not only under 4 hours but with a PB by 10 minutes. Safe to say I was walking on air for the rest of the day.
How is it even possible to run that well with not enough miles in training? There began analysis……..I came up with these contributing factors:-
- Slight weight loss
- HITT training 4/5 times a week
- Walking on average 7 miles a day 4 days a week
- Not focussing on the time, but just running and enjoying
I wish I knew what the secret was to how this run went so well, then I would repeat, repeat, repeat!
It then looked like I was set for a good run on my next planned event – The Ex to Ax but sadly a week later I was struck down with some kind of virus and did not run for two weeks, instead I gave my stomach muscles a good work out by coughing morning, noon and night. I am happy to report that finally it seems to have left the building but now I’m not confident enough to run 22 miles along the Devon coast, it is a shame but it will be there next year. However this leaves me with no focus so I best start researching.