Ran the Hardmoors 30 on New Years Day. What a race! Glorious views! Great people! …and it didn’t even rain!
Really enjoyed the first 10 miles, though by starting too fast, I only had myself to blame for my 20-mile demise. After scoffing a few jellybeans and a pink doughnut at the checkpoint at Robin Hood’s Bay, mile 13, I was sick. This could probably be attributed to too much alcohol over Christmas, but from this point onward, I felt like, joint by joint, limb by limb, my body started to say “Why should I help you out today? You should have put in more training! You shouldn’t have drunk so much over the last week! Pig!”
If I had ran with a Garmin on my wrist on the day, the analysis would provide a story in itself. After hitting Whitby at mile 19, it was a welcome relief to be at a checkpoint and actually have an excuse for stopping. I hung around for five minutes, and headed back out on to the (surprisingly busy, considering it was NY Day!) streets of Whitby.
A wrong turn (or rather, missing the left-turn on to the Cleveland Way) after the 199 steps to Whitby Abbey added insult to injury. From here on, the trails were so muddy I could only liken the conditions to Glastonbury.
I cursed every step taken. I wanted to give up. I was bored of feeling shit, and fed up of just shuffling along… I was cursing myself for having a sober, half-ten bedtime the night before when I could have enjoyed an Indian and polished off a crate of beer with the wife. It sounds odd, but at the time I would have easily traded places with someone nursing a New Years hangover. Near the final ascent, a driver asked if I wanted a lift. It was so tempting to eat the forbidden fruit, but I refrained.
Taking another wrong turn less than half a mile from the finish summed up my day. I followed the trail for about half a kilometre, and only realised my stupidity after a pair of walkers told me no other runners had passed this way.
I hit the finish line at the Village Hall in 6 hours, 3 minutes. Disappointed I was, but in hindsight I am extremely proud of finishing after what was quite a long period of feeling low and swearing at mud. It is a fantastic route through 30+ miles of breathtaking scenery and I would recommend it to anyone 100%!
Now, being a man, I have never given birth, but I because I’ve got two kids myself I feel ‘almost’ qualified in making this statement. Ultrarunning can be very much like childbirth. The ‘doing’ is tough, it’s horrible, and you vow never to do it again, but straight after, these feelings are replaced with something you are extremely proud of. The pain is forgotten and you want more!
A partnership is created…
I really enjoyed Running Food’s flapjack on the day though. I had one an hour before the race, and another during, and I definitely felt the benefit from them, and got a huge boost from eating something more substantial than a gel or some sweets.
I had kept Tim’s business card from the race and called him a couple of days after the race to discuss the possibility of becoming a reseller of his ‘RunningFood’ products. What a top bloke! We spent a good hour on the phone covering all topics. I’m pleased to say that Feetus will become a reseller of Chia Charge and that magical flapjack, bringing RunningFood’s stuff to the hands of the UK barefoot and minimalist running market at feetus.co.uk.
It hadn’t occurred to me on the day, but I believe these chia-infused super-snacks will sit perfectly against the brands and barefoot and minimalist items I will be selling at feetus.co.uk. Can’t wait!
As for running. I can’t wait for the next race. The Hardmoors Osmotherley 26.2 sounds perfect!
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