Sunday 30 December, 11:00
Decided to do this run rather than a fell race in north Sheffield. Ran with Rachael, Scott (both VRs) and Mandy. Took it steady enjoying the undulating course through forested scenery. A mix of tarmac and trail.
Distance: 4.91 miles
Time: 47:32 official
Friday 28 December, 18:05
Seven of us started out from The Greystones pub, running up out of Sheffield into the countryside. Went up Porter Clough, apparently. I had no clue, it was dark, headtorches on and unfamiliar territory.
After 4 miles or so we picked up another 7 VRs at the Norfolk Arms(?), for the downhill return. Great atmosphere and an enjoyable run. Vegan pizza at the pub afterwards.
Distance: 7.59 miles
Avg pace: 12:12
Trainers: Brooks Cascadia 13
Christmas Day, 09:07
Lots of runners, about 14 of them were from Vegan Runners. Cool and overcast but not icy. Started in the middle, as it thinned out I started passing runners. Last lap I caught up with Mikk and Caroline and Mikk encouraged me into a sprint finish.
Distance: 5k: Suunto 3.13 miles
Time: 23:49: Suunto 24:00
Monday 17 December, 08:58
Fantastic weather again, sunny, cool, bit of a breeze. Headed eastwards past the marina and up along the cliffs a bit. Zone 2 again.
Distance: 6.18 miles
Avg HR: 143bpm
Avg pace: 9:26 min/mile
Trainers: Brooks Ghost 10
Sunday 9 December, 08:03
Didn’t feel well prepared, hadn’t followed a set marathon training plan since doing Yorkshire marathon in October. Had done a selection of half mara, 10k and parkruns so was ‘race fit’ but not specifically for trail marathon.
I hadn’t reccied the route but other runners at the start reassured me it was sufficiently taped and straightforward. Started toward the back with survival in mind.
The first climb was, as forecast, muddy. A steady power march, picking the best footing.
Then at the top the sun broke out and cast a warm winter glow across the fields. Soon the first view of the top of Roseberry Topping came into view.
The route took runners up and down to the far side of Roseberry, then back up to the top again and off by a different route.
Next was a longer, more gradual climb up to moorland. Lots of variety of path on this race: tarmac, rocky trail, stone slabs, terraced steps, narrow cuts through heather and heathland, and mud.
Managed to keep my spirits up, welcoming other runners, marshalls and photographer with a ‘Ho Ho Ho!’.
At the second or third checkpoint I heard the Marshall tell a lady runner doing about the same pace as me that she was 3rd woman. Made me think I was doing ok, though I was running my own race.
Up on the moors there was a bit of wind, made it much cooler and towards the end my eyes were drying out making it hard to see.
At the 22/23 mile checkpoint a marshall told me I was 40th runner. Thought I must have misheard him. But it started to dominate my thinking. I began counting my position as runners passed me and I passed them. I ran long stretches of those last miles in 36th or 37th place. Positively nose bleed positions for me, being near the top of the field, but I still wondered if the marshall was correct.
Descending the last muddy hill to Guisborough I was taking care but making good progress. Then my first fall of the race. Some mud was covering a loop of bramble or root, which trapped my right foot and sent me sprawling across the path. I put my hands out to break my fall but my face just lightly brushed the ground.
Picked my self up, muddy knees and glove but nothing broken. Pushed on, soon hitting tarmac road. Tried to remember where I was going, how far it was to the finish and where to turn. Thought there were a couple of other runners not far back so worked hard.
Suddenly I saw a runner draw level alongside me. I looked at him and just thought ‘I’m not giving up my position, whatever it is’. Exactly then I realised the turn was very close so I gave it everything and really sprinted up the drive and into the Sea Cadets building ahead of the other guy. Don’t know where that burst came from!
The two lady timekeepers looked at me, asked if I was ok. Asked if I needed first aid (no thanks, and I have a kit in my pack). Suggested I might want to wash my face, washroom is over there. Got my medal and shirt and went to see what they were talking about.
It was good to meet and chat with a few other Vegan Runners. I ran with Paresh on and off, till he took off. Chris had offered me accommodation and food, but a bit too late as I’d checked into my hotel. And Nathan works for the same place that I do, different city.
A fantastic experience and I’m pleased with my performance. Think I should have eaten more.
Official results show I was 37th out of 132 finishers, and 6th MV50 out of 22 🙂
Distance: 30.2 miles
Time: official 6:31:19, Suunto 6:31:15
Avg pace: 12:55 min/mile
Trainers: inov8 x-claw 275
Sunday 25 November, 07:18
Had pencilled in Longshaw Trust 10k a couple of weeks ago. It had been coach Mikk’s birthday in the week and on Friday he shared the idea of running 33km including the Longshaw 10k Race. I didn’t take too much persuading and a couple of other VRs, Nigel and Caroline, were up for it too.
Parked up at Millhouses Park and ran out of Sheffield via Eccy Woods, Limb Valley, Lady Canning’s Plantation, Burbage, Stanage, Higger Tor, Carl Wark. Approaching Longshaw we could just see the race being set off, and a couple of minutes later we ran through the start and did the race. Passed loads of runners, even having done 8-9 miles first.
Coffee with a big group of VRs afterwards. Then returned via Totley Trig and Horses Field. Lots of fun, and good to get a long run in before my next marathon. We ended up doing 37.5km, more than planned.
Mikk just posted a short video of the run on YouTube: https://youtu.be/dVuDX5q6KL0
Distance: 23.3 miles
Avg pace: 11:13 min/mile
Trainers: inov8 x-claw 275
Sunday 18 November, 09:32
Cool and sunny. Had felt a niggle in left glute so thought about taking it easy. Busy start, lots of runners made for a slow and steady pace. As the runners spread out I set about passing a few and running a comfortable pace.
About 3 miles in I noticed my last 2 splits had been around 7:30 min/mile. That equates to around 45 minutes, my PB set last week. Felt good so tried to keep that pace going and see what happened.
Didn’t see mile 4 split. Mile 5 was good. Pushed hard on the out and back final mile along Madeira Drive. Didn’t glance at watch, just pushed. Missed the PB I set last week at Dalby Forest by 13 seconds. I’d lost that time early on during the first mile. Never mind, pleased to do that having run hard at parkrun yesterday and walked all over town. At least I know the PB is definitely beatable.
Fantastic running among lots of VRs and with lots of ‘go vegan runner’ shouts.
Distance: 10km / 6.2 miles
Avg pace: 7:20 min/mile
Trainers: Brooks Ghost 10