|This was probably the most solid part of the course!|
The brown sticky stuff had been causing serious problems all day with St Johns rushing left right and centre. It was rumoured that 1 or possibly 2 people had broken their legs. It was correct though that the courses were altered in the afternoon as medics and ambulances could not gain access to certain areas. This was the proviso to keep the event from being cancelled.
I set of as the sole athlete for Severn AC (the rest of the team quite sensibly staying at home) amongst some 1300+ runners. It was like an early American gold rush, well that was until the mud enveloped every ones feet (this is were if I was sponsored by Inov8 I'd be saying my Xtalon 212's gave me great grip on the muddy course....however, I don't think anything that day gave anyone any great grip...but just in case you are wondering the Xtalons didn't do bad and I faired a lot better than most). The men's course had been shortened to 10k. At the time I was quite glad about that as running was extremely difficult, however in hindsight I think I would have faired better had it been the usual 7.5miles as people were tiring at the end and I think I may have made more places up. In the end I finished a very muddy 543; I think 1302 or there abouts finished. A lot dropped out though that's for certain, many due to conditions and several due to loosing shoes! It was a hard run, one which I didn't overly enjoy but it definitely served as a good training run, so mustn't grumble.
I rounded the weekend of with a 17mile run with Tracy on a circular route from Froghall travelling up to the Weaver hills. Then down into Wooton Estate (Mr Bamfords place; him of big yellow JCB digger fame), back up to Alton Towers, over the Churnet up to Alton and then into Dimmingsdale Woods (one the FC haven't sold yet Kate!). From there we followed the River Churnet up the Valley, ascended up to Whiston and back down to Froghall. It was a great trail run over footpaths. I'll have to take my camera next time to get some snaps as it is very scenic on most parts of the route. It was a great appetite builder that's for sure and I don't think much of my pizza and chips touched the sides as it went down. So not a bad weekend all in all. :)
Another just for fun link below. I appear looking heavy and tired at around the 7min50 point. But its worth watching from around 7min10 as a poor runner has a shoe mishap.