August Bank holiday weekends are usually busy for us as we have a number of birthdays within a very short space of time and that usually falls over the long weekend, but this time it was busier and came with later nights.
On Friday evening we did manage a night in with a film as a slow intro into the manic weekend.
Waking on Sunday we zipped up to the shops to buy a bucket/car boot full load of food and flowers ahead of Adam Mum’s birthday gathering that evening. Then came a bit of faffing about before heading off to Catford for the do itself.
It was really very nice (once we got Adam’s mum to stop trying to do things) and all seemed to have a good time. So much so that we didn’t get home until 1:30, making us even more glad of the later start time for the mornings race.
The Oliver Fisher 5k and 10k race raises funds for a children’s ward in the local hospital. We signed up not too long ago as a way of making us run 10k for the Maximum Effort 10k virtual race I signed us up for months ago (just after seeing Deadpool I think).
It was to be raced in a local park so we only had to leave an hour before the start, which mean we did manage to get a reasonable amount of sleep in the end. I had only ever been there once before about 10 years ago and couldn’t remember it at all, so I was looking forward to a bit of an explore.
We set off (which was a surprise as no one seemed to hear the starting pistol/bell/shout: I still don’t know what it was), Adam up nearer the front talking to a Rebel Runner that he knows while I was further back knowing I was going to take it steady.
I didn’t start the race with an idea of my ABC goals but as I got going I decided on A – 10k trail PB, B – 10k in any time, C – 5k in a good time. (It was a two lap race with people running either a 5 or 10k, so I could finish early.)
After about a mile; red, sweating and with a sun-burn-feeling right arm, I re-evaluated and went for: A – 10k in any time, B – a completely-run 5k (i.e. no walking), C – 5k.
It was hot and the first two miles were actually rather lovely and distracting but that third mile hit and I knew I wasn’t going to complete. So I decided I would at least finish the 5k well: I’d run it all so far, even the short, steep hills, so I hoped I could pull out a steady run with a slow, but still-running, end up the hill.
But I failed. On all counts. Failed to complete the 10k and then failed to complete the 5k running. I walked up that final hill, but in my defence the lady in front of me was ‘running’ and actually not getting anywhere faster than I was walking. There was another lady who tried to convince me to stay on and complete but I had to apologise to her that today she couldn’t inspire me enough to keep going and I was done.
I hit the level ground and ran a reasonable pace across the line to receive a medal and some water. Nipping to the car I grabbed my phone and awaited Adam’s return, slightly worried he would think I was a lazy cow for dropping out.
His 10k PB stands at about 42mins on the flat, but this was trail and I’d experienced the course so I wasn’t expecting him when I heard shouts about someone sprinting up the hill. But that was him. Trying to run down a guy in front of him and very nearly succeeding if it weren’t for a small child that ran into the finishing funnel 5m from the finish causing him to leap out the way and just miss catching up with the guy!
Much swearing later; a cup of water downed and some jaffa cakes in hand, he calmed down and managed to realise that he actually had a great time (~45mins) and was high up in the finishers list (he actually got 7th, but I think it was really joint 6th as he got the same time as the guy he would have beaten on the line).
It started raining so we cheered a few more people across the line, had a chat with Jon, the Rebel Runner running 12 marathons in 12 months (now actually 16! – check out his blog) and went off home (via B&Q for a new toilet handle and an ice cream in the car park).
Some food, replacing of toilet handle, a shower and a small nap later and we were off to a friend’s for a birthday BBQ. Much fun was had and I drank a bit, which I haven’t done for ages (mainly due to being the designated driver but also just not that bothered about it anymore) and again we had a late-ish night thanks to SingStar.
We treated ourselves to a lie-in on Monday before a planned trip to Cobham Fete but my Dad (who we were going with) was busy minding two dogs so we just went to visit him for lunch and a bit of a walk around the woods with these two lovelies:
So, it was a busy, but pleasant, long weekend! Oh, and I went on a bike ride with a friend for the first time on Friday: that made things even busier as well as making me unable to sit down without making a noise (not used to the seat yet…).
Just one thing to panic about: Roald Dahl Challenge is in two weeks and I am struggling to run 7 miles… (plan is for a half) but I can always scale that down as I have form now!