Monday, 7 November 2011

Tough little number

The general opinion of the day was that we had to raise our game with only 4 weeks to go before the Brecon Beacons 40 mile ultra. George wanted to take on a 20 mile trail run and I happily spent the latter part of Saturday evening having a look over my map to work out a route...I felt that we had to visit an old friend, part of the London to Brighton route reaching the M25 motorway and then join the Vanguard Way , then North Downs Way and up north to the car.

I found it really hard to wake up this morning and wasn't until about 20 minutes into the run that I felt human again and able to chat properly with George but found from the start I seemed to be ready to run, to take on the hills and not to let up. The first 8 miles of the planned route was an old friend with some nice little testers, hills we have respected too much and it was time for us to take them on and not be frightened of them, with a change of pace we were soon seen taking them in our stride. 

We reached the M25 motorway easily and we jumped onto the Vanguard Way to take us up a very steep and rutted route to the top of Titsey Hill through freshly planted fields and herds of cows bemused but beginning to show interest in two fluorescent clad runners pounding past their morning rituals and with that interest two fluorescent clad runners were soon seen ramping up the pace. The next ascent saw us speed walking and chatting about Brecon and the opportunity of having a short break at 10 miles for a bite to eat, today's breakfast menu a satsuma and a gingernut biscuit, we were soon on our way discussing the distant rain dropping in the distant valley then taking on yet another ascent to take us off the Downs and into the flatter, more welcoming paths.

The wind picking up, the temperature dropping on the top of the scarp I put my Buff on and we began to slug out the remaining 10 miles which comprised approximately 0.5 miles of road, the rest trail and field mostly filled with herds of cows getting in the last of the prime grass before winter sets in for sure.

The remaining miles flew by and we were soon on the final ascent to the car park, legs tired, both with twisted and stumped ankles from various trips and clumps. Heart rates up, lungs bursting from the numerous ascents and descents, both really happy with the run and a new found confidence.

Sunday's run , 20 miles with  2,900 feet ascent, numerous scratches from brambles and 1 blister.... aweseome

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