Sunday, 16 March 2008

A soggy red nose

... well, I should have had a red nose, I suppose, but I looked enough of a clown as it was!

This was the Sport Relief Mile Day. You could choose to run 1, 3 or 6 miles, so I reckoned that 3 miles was reasonable; because of the length of the loop chosen, the actual distances were 1.05, 2.85 and 5.55 miles.

When I woke, it was tipping it down. Not only that, but a high wind - not fun. Leaving my visiting friends in bed (very wise of them), I drove into Norwich, met up with Elaine and her son Peter, and Kim (not running this time, but was there to cheer us on and took lots of photos - thanks, Kim!), and lined up with vast numbers to run round the city centre.

Whatever bright spark (Noel Coward, actually) said Norfolk was flat had clearly never been to the centre of our county town. The hills around the centre are noticeable, to say the least! The route took us down the side of the marketplace, along to Chapelfield, around the Chapelfield Park area, and back round to the Forum. After my third lap I was more than ready to stop - the thought of doing the six mile version didn't bear thinking about - but at least I was OK with doing more than a mile.

Peter, being a fit teenager, was far faster than us; like an eager labrador, he effectively ran much further than we did, as he kept running ahead, then turning back or running on the spot to allow us to catch up! I knew from our training runs that Elaine would have no problem with the distance, and as she has the light frame of a runner, rather than a plodder like me, I wasn't surprised when she and Peter vanished in front of me during the last half-lap or so, and came in exactly a minute ahead.

However, I was pretty pleased to find that I'd maintained at least a sub-11 minute mile throughout - the photo of me crossing the line proves my timing(see clock top right)!

Aching a bit, but not too badly; very, very wet (I was glad I'd brought a change of clothes, and especially shoes - my trainers were twice their usual weight by the end with the water, or that's what it felt like); and very hungry, I was glad to go off with Kim to meet Malcolm & Sue for tea & a scone in Jarrolds. The post-race photograph with Elaine & Peter is perhaps the least flattering photo of me I've ever seen, but at least I look happy!

With a bit of luck, by my next outing (Race for Life, May) it will be (a) in better weather and (b) I'll be nearer to the fitness point I left last November!

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