Sunday 23 July, 06:16
11C, bright and cool with full sun later on. A 16 mile run on the Exterminator route again. To try out a few alternative paths. Marathon schedule called for an easy 10 mile long run, but want to maintain where I'm at now. Judged clothing right with just t-shirt and shorts.
I could not find the alternative trail to checkpoint 1 on the way up, found and tried it on the way down/to checkpoint 2 but it was slow going through heather etc.
Followed the same route as before across Houndkirk Moor, and over Burbage Edge, but slipped and fell just before the bridge. Knocked right knee on a rock. Drew blood and plenty of expletives, but no real damage.
Had difficulty finding my way up onto Stanage Edge, tried 2-3 places and struggled. Seemed to find it easy previously. Going down from Stanage I headed through the ferns but they were shoulder high and I could not find a consistent path, plenty of hidden rocks and I paddled in a small stream. Need to find/pick a clearer path or head to the right. Lost a lot of time here.
After Grindleford I climbed alongside the stream and again got lost in the heather and ferns at the top. Headed left and found the trail, and also a few other runners taking part in a race. Need to trace that back to Haywood for next time.
Had a gel at home, one at 6 miles, then got fuzzy head and hungry about 10-11 miles. Dipped in my backpack for some Trek Cocoa Peanut Peak Protein Energy Chunks; they were great. Had another gel at 13 miles and drank 500ml water.
Today seemed slow, I would push harder in the race. Finished nearly 2 minutes quicker than first recce/trial run. Didn't seem as tired at the end, in spite of the very heavy going following lots of rain.
Wore calf compression socks, to see if they helped with all the climbing. They seemed to, and had the added benefit of giving protection from some foliage/nettles/brambles. The Inov-8 shoes performed well on the very soggy ground. Not so good on rocks though.
Distance: 16.49 miles
Avg pace: 13:24 min/mile
Elevation gain: 3379ft
Trainers: Inov-8 X-claw 275
Wildlife: lots! Plenty of sheep and cows en route; chickens and geese; a squirrel and a large pig!
8C to 10C, cool, rain just clearing away to sunshine. An 11 mile run along Froggatt and Curbar Edge, back to Fox House. Didn’t feel especially strong, just ‘OK’. A chill wind was blowing the rain clouds away, so needed Salomon jacket.
In the second mile I descended a steep valley and went to cross a small stream. I must have miscalculated the friction coefficient because my maths worked out at: wet trainers + damp rock = steve in stream + loud expletives echoing around the valley
Damage to my pride and shin as I ended up on my left side in the stream. It happened in slow motion and I was really surprised the big flat rock was that slippy. Found out much later as I started the car and looked in the mirror that I’d also scraped my chin.
It might have been the adrenaline but I seemed to be able to keep going for longer through the next 9 miles, only walking here and there on the steepest bits. Didn’t need to navigate with map at all, I know this route now.
I’d had a gel as I set off and one at 9 miles (I’d forgotten to have it earlier). Drank 500ml water. It felt like I was a bit fitter than last week, and hardly noticed right foot soreness at all, just at 4 miles and only very dull then. The sun came out and wind was less chilling, started to warm up a bit too much on the return leg.
I knew I was going to be faster than last weekend but didn’t look at my watch till the finish. In summary I knocked over 10 minutes off last weekend’s time, that’s a minute per mile quicker. And I also of course knocked off a bit of skin off leg and face 🙂
Pleased to get round in a decent time (for me), feeling stronger, and avoided serious injury.
Distance: 10.95 miles
Avg HR: 143bpm
Avg pace: 10:12 minutes/mile
Elevation gain: 1241ft
Trainers: Brooks Cascadia
Wildlife: 2 squirrels, 1 hare/rabbit, 4 highland coo (scary)