Getting a sub-4 at this race was generally going to be quite a hard thing to do this year, however, coming off of the Ramsay last week with ridiculously few blisters and no real injuries - just fatigue -meant that I was slowly coming around to the idea that I shouldn't just pootle around, but I should give it a good go, and see if it was possible to get that sub-4 glass.
If you don't try, you'll never know... right?
|Before the first Pip Feeling it.|
Through the bog and up through the first couple of kilometres I was really feeling it. To be fair, the most exercise I had done since the Saturday previously was ride my bike the 5 miles from Fersit to Craighouse, so had little inkling of how my legs might feel. Jasmin P was just ahead of me through the first bog and up through the early foothills - she was with Dave Ward, so it was a pretty decent bet
that they were heading for a sub-4, best try and keep up with them then.
Unfortunately me keeping up with them was not something that my legs were particularly enthralled about and slowly, metre by metre, they eked their way away from me, until I got to the first Pip,
|Going round CP1|
Far too early to say if it was possible, but certainly early enough to know if I was way off the pace... it was astonishing to see that I was bang on for the split.
However, the amount of energy that felt like it was being expended in order to keep this pace up was a lot higher than I hoped.
Off and over to Pip 2, I caught up and passed Konrad who didn't look like he was having a good day, and ended up climbing to the top of this one a way off Jasmin etc. sharing some of the wind chill with Dave Blund from Dark Peak. I had no idea on the next few splits, only vague ideas and memories, so just went as hard as I dared. Over to the final Pip, and down towards the first Pap, through the bog.
|There goes the sub4 crew|
|I have no idea.|
He caught me up at about the time where you can kick out on the plateau to the left and go up the steep ground before taking the ridge to the top, so we kept each other company through there.
|Looking back to ...pap..1?|
|Hux overtaking me on 2|
Jules and Harshan were taking photos at the top - I still had water so carried straight on, Matt must have stopped for water as he didn't appear to be following me closely off the hill. Again, more knee pain, but only muscular, so it was simply a put it to the back of my head and mince down the hill in the quickest way possible.
|thanks Harshan for the picture.|
|The face of the enjoyment of fellrunning|
|Top of Pap3 - ??|
|Trying to keep up with Hux up Coire Beinn|
Despite that, I chucked in a gel and managed to keep up with Matt to the top, though he then vastly out paced me down through the bog towards the bridge. Down through interminable grassy bog on and on, and it was noticable that my legs weren't cramping. It may have been that I just wasn't strong enough to go fast enough to make my legs cramp today. How odd! oh well.
The heat was bearing down on us, and just past the river on the final off to the road I caught Matt up again, having a bit of a sit down and a rant/sulk about the heat and general not-particularly-happy-to-be-here-ness. So I carried on running, hoping that he would do much the same. We were both out of water, but Lynne was going to be at the bridge with a bottle and some gels, so the best course of action was to get there as soon as possible.
|the happiness of the road|
We stumbled down to the bridge and managed not to cramp going over the bridge. By now all thought of a sub4 was gone - we'd have to do a sub16 min 5k which was not going to happen.
Gel was shared out, water was drunk and thrown over us as we battered our tired way down the road. Matt thought he had heatstroke, I figured it was *just* heat exhaustion, so carried on throwing water at him.
|5k of this|
|you can just about make us out - coming into the finish|
|Hux modelling this years tshirt. and a beer.|