The weather turned by the end of last week and it was muggy and wet. On the back of my last couple of races, I decided to revisit road running a little more and found a 10K near Kendal. This worked out quite well as Ed had the Howtown Fell Race on Sunday. We decided to make a weekend of it and booked into a small campsite in Old Hutton on the Friday night. As we were driving to the race on Saturday, I realised quite how ‘undulating’ the course was going to be, perhaps I’d underestimated this one a little!
We parked up at the start, this was at the Bendrigg Trust Outdoor Activity Centre. The race was part of their Summer Fete which seemed to be very successful, lots of activities raising money for the Trust and the work that it does with disabled children, a very worthy cause, and what a beautiful setting!
It quickly became apparent that this race was a club favourite, I was in the distinct minority not wearing a club vest (looking at the results, I think there were only two of us NOT running for a club!). I decided that as it was only 10K that I was going to try hard and not fret too much about pacing and so when the starter went I really put the work in early on. For the first couple of miles I was working hard to maintain a decent pace, annoyingly, (and one of my irritations with the Garmin 405) the side button of my watch collided with a fellow runner’s elbow and very early on, I knew that my Garmin wasn’t going to be accurate as it was only a little while later that I realised that it had paused.
The route itself is a loop and it felt tough, the winning time was 5 minutes slower than the winning time of my last 10K- highlighting the challenge of the course, also, the quality of runners was very good for such a small race. As the race progressed I felt a little disheartened as I was finding it pretty taxing and yes I probably set off too fast. The other thing was that the markers were in km not miles, I had this debate with Ed afterwards, which one do you prefer? Yes, the km go by quicker, it makes you feel like your ticking of the distance pretty fast, but there’s twice as many! I know I prefer mile markers, I’d rather wait more and count less!
The last .2 was signed ‘Heartbreak Hill’ I don’t know about being heartbroken but I was definitely broken at this point and soaking wet, the rain was lashing down. I felt so unfit! So much for progress!
I had no idea of my time due to the Garmin error but Ed had counted 13 women in, this turned out to be correct. I was pleased with that result because the calibre of runners was much higher than I’m used to. When the results were published, I was pleased to see that I’d finished under 50 minutes and 13th woman out of 54, so overall I was happy with that.