Monday, 7 December 2009

Mince Pie 10

I ran ten miles yesterday. I ran the craziest, wildest, wettest, hilliest, muddiest, windiest ten miles I've ever run.
I left my mum's house and drove straight into hammering rain, with the windscreen wipers on full speed I still could not see where I was going. My friend and I decided that the race would, in all likelihood, be cancelled but had no contact number and her dad couldn't find anything on the web-site as she coached him remotely around it on her mobile. So we pressed on. We arrived in the wind-blasted town of Peacehaven on the South Coast (incidentally where I spent many hours mastering juctions as I learned to drive over twenty years ago) under dull but dry skies. We emerged from race headquarters a little while later to blue skies!
However, that did not affect the sheer quantity of water on the course: we were slowed to walking pace as we slithered in single-file past path-wide puddles, or tottered along slippery ridges between muddy ruts. The wind added to the excitement, gusting visciously just as footing was lost on the slippery surface meaning that staying upright became an achievement in itself. Up the Downs we climbed, before descending at a hurtling pace like so many overgrown children running full pelt down a hill. It was enough to make me laugh out-loud at the sheer madness of it all!
The hills and the miles continued and I was thrilled to see the end, although so much of my mental capacity had been engaged in avoiding a faceful of mud that I had not had the usual road race feeling of counting down the distance markers. I got a spot prize, too, for my stupendous sprint finish (or possibly at random!) and a free mince pie. And a reminder of why it is such fun to run!

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