Monday, 30 July 2012

Category, cool, but no sign of Ron!

Off road running seems to be the flavour of the month with club runs taking the form of trail runs of late.  They receive a mixed reception amongst club members, who range from those who adore off road running to those who loathe it.  It's hard to please everyone all of the time but in general everyone gets on with the set route without too much complaining.

Friday club run was once again a large percentage of off road.  Taking in the golf course, anyone who knows the area in which we train, the sheer mention of 'golf course' firmly paints a picture of steep hills, as said golf course is named 'Woodhall Hills Golf Course' and it doesn't have 'hills' in the title for nothing!  After negotiating wooded trails known locally as the 'jockey path' - again appropriately named as a horse would have been a great asset in covering such terrain, we began the climb up to the golf course.  The crossing was a little tricky as unlike previous crossings, there were actually golfers out on the fairway. I for one, quickened my pace and hoped and prayed I didn't get hit by 'however mile an hour' golf balls which were being launched by said golfers  across the green!  All safely across we continued on our way unscathed down into Calverley and through the woods. 6.5 miles done, we arrived back at Apperley Bridge,  a few of the group bitten by unknown insects but that's one of the hazards of off road running if you're prone to bites, I myself am one of the lucky ones and must possess inbuilt repellent!

Cue, the weekend.  With the recce undertaken as a club run a couple of weeks ago I was looking forward to the Idle Trail Race.  Bright and breezy Sunday morning we arrived down at our training base, Woodhouse Grove School for the 10:30 am start.  Inbetween traces of drizzle the sun shone brightly.  A lap of the school field went some way to thinning out the field before we encountered steps taking us down onto the canal tow path.  We still had to queue a little before arriving down there.  Two miles of flat terrain is superb for allowing the runners to get their breathing and pace sorted before the start of the climbs.  Over a stile and a little way down a private road before a marshal sent us upwards through what seemed liked steps to a ginnel - emerging minutes later onto another private road before turning down one of the steepest roads I've had the pleasure to run down!  Thanking my lucky stars that it wasn't too long before we emerged at the bottom of it signalling that we weren't too far away from where we started.  Digging up of the school fields meant a slight detour for the finish which when the finish line was crossed meant we had run 6.60 miles instead of 6.1.  I was elated though to find I finished 6 minutes quicker than my previous time for this race in 2010. Looking on the results though it was very strange to note for the first time that I was in the
                                                                F50 category!

As an added bonus we were treated to a choice of finisher's memento too! in the form of either a tee shirt or a cool bag - as I love it when there's something different on offer I chose the cool bag of course! I Didn't even catch a glimpse of Ron Hill this year - he was there though according to the results. 

Tonight's session at club is, as usual, speed and hills this week in the form of Bolton Lane hill reps! A quick but challenging session - usually feels a little like a short, sharp shock! Great session for testing the cardiovascular system!!

1 comment:

  1. Trail runs - is there ANYTHING better? I don't think so!