Parkrun, Peebles and tapir

Made a last minute decision to get a parkrun in yesterday – last opportunity, for me,  for a ‘June’ one (we have selected parkruns for the club championships). Weather was really grim and rain was bouncing off the city bypass – by the time I arrived at Cramond there was a strong headwind coming off the Forth. Conditions couldn’t get much worse. Met Ian & Jane who obviously had their eye on some points too! On the way out it was a case of getting the head down and pushing as hard as the wind allowed – a bit of drafting took place around a couple of runners but there wasn’t much time to get a rhythm going…I was sitting about 5th on the way out, but as we turned, I could see the two guys I passed on the way out making a bit of a rennaissance and, wind assisted, they eked past me in the last mile…Ian managed to get past the leading HBT and made a comfortable win. I was 8th, which I’m happy with. Jane sailed in a little time after and that was that – short ‘n’ sweet. All times were consistently down quite a bit due to the headwind.

Today and another club championship race – this time the Beltane 10K trail race at Peebles. This was my 3rd run at this one and was hoping to enjoy it – it’s almost cross country (well it is for a large part, as it follows the Peebles XC route along the river and up a killer hill, and descends back to river level through a steep, twisting and tortuous muddy path with occasional rocks and exposed tree roots). At the start, we were warned about these hazards and then we were off. It was a case of simply pushing out at a pretty fast pace for the first 4K, knowing full well that the next 3K would soon erode the pace. Conditions were not too bad underfoot along the river, and I hung onto my placing for a few km until the viaduct, where I got overtaken by someone i’d passed earlier – at the hill in the forest, he kept slowly running up the hill, but I actually managed to almost catch him while I walked up – which is nice. He shot off at the top and I never saw him again…the descent to the river and back to Peebles is quite tricky – heavy and slippy mud, steep descents, twists and turns and big trees en route all required concentration – but it was nice to get some speed back, if somewhat erratic. Back along the river,into the town  and the park and then a final lap of the park to the finish. Very enjoyable, even more so as I had knocked a couple of minutes or so off my last two times for this route. Oddly, a few others were saying that their times were down on previous times. Again, a low turnout from DRC with only Stuart, Anne and Ian S in attendance, which means my championship points haul will be minimal.

Time to take it easy this week in anticipation of the Lairig Ghru next Sunday – i’ll probably do the Portobello 4 miler on Thursday, but really need to keep this week sensible and treat it as a tapir.

Tapir week beckons

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