Posts Tagged ‘Post Race Pizza

10
Jun
11

juneathon day 9: crisis square mile race

Firstly, apologies for the late posting of this as I didn’t get back from the race in time to post it last night. Secondly, this will be a fairly abridged version as I am crobarring this into the small piece of time available before starting work.
Yesterday evening was the Crisis Square Mile Run and pre-race I’d arranged to meet up with Hauling My Carcass (who had entered the race on my recommendation after I’d ran it last year), iliketocount and JogBlog. It is an unusual race in as much as it is organised and marshalled but the streets are not closed. It is over a weird distance (6.71km by my Garmin) and everyone is given a red “Crisis” t-shirt to wear for the race. As Crisis is a charity for the homeless, this year, prior to the race start, everyone was asked to wear their red t-shirt and lie down in Paternoster Square for a photo to raise awareness of the number of people sleeping rough on London’s streets. Once the photograph was completed, the race started on time (7pm) and we were off.
I’ll possibly write a better, more descriptive race report when there is more time, but the course hugs the Thames, crossing it 4 times, taking in North and South Bank and then finishes on the North side of the Millenium footbridge. It is fun to run because of the organised chaos of picking your way through the civilians going about their business and, whilst running, knowing that you are part of this vast red stream of runners meandering through the capital.
I, once again, ran the race in the Vibrams which, for me, only added to the atmosphere: The VFF’s make me feel like a kid again – running for the hell of it. So once the starters klaxon sounded, I was off – taking a leaf from the the kids in SonNumberOnes cross country the other day – head down, smiling and giving it all I had. I just ran as fast as I could for the duration. Smiling all the way. I finished the 6.71km in 31:43. A very respectable time for me. But the most important bit was that it just felt brilliant – not effortless, but FUN.
We all reconvened at the finish, said goodbye to HMC who was off home and then iliketocount, JogBlog and I went for pizza. Very nice pizza. A fitting end to a fine evening.
So, another day of Juneathon done, another satisfying race (that’s 2 in a row now…) and another run that just left me feeling so much better at the finish than at the start.
Now my only problem is to find the time for today’s run…

10
Jun
10

cutting it fine

Crisis Square Mile Run.
Jogblog, FitArtist, Me.
7.3kms felt fast
Lost FitArtist (Sorry, Adele!!)
Pizza after.
Full post tomorrow.

Juneathon so far: Run – 64.1kms / Cycle – 12.6kms

12
Oct
09

royal parks half race report

Parklife – You Can’t, You Won’t And You Don’t Stop – The Nicest Pizza In The World

There was no-one on this train last year… just me, hunched in my seat, hood up, pretending I wasn’t on a train at just after 7am on a Sunday morning and about to run 13.1 miles in a couple of hours. This year there are at least 4 of us ( the tell-tale chip on the laces of the trainers marks us all out as members of this peculiar club) who get on at my stop and our ranks grow with every station visited. By Finsbury Park, we are about 30 strong and we march down to the tube. The first tube to arrive is so packed with runners, I cannot get on, so wait for the next, which is less packed but still predominantly runners with a few bemused civillians.
Leaving the tube at Hyde Park, I am delighted to find it drizzling mildly, and make my way with the rest of the be-trainered towards Hyde Park. Meeting up with Hauling My Carcass, who looks decidedly unhappy about standing in a damp London park a little after 8am on Sunday. Niceties exchanged, portaloo visited and then throw our stuff into our bags, dump them at the bag check and then loiter around until about 9.10 am when we funnel into our starting positions. Last year, we tried to position ourselves so that we were in the shadow of a tall block of flats near the start – it was hot and sunny and we were trying to stay in the shade. Today by comparison, was damp and a bit overcast – good conditions for a Half Marathon but not for standing around beforehand.
We were underway quite quickly and the throng soon spread out allowing us all to settle into our respective paces. I wanted to cover the first few miles between 8.30 – 8.50 pace and came through the first mile maker at around 8.47 mins per mile. the Garmin telling me that the mile marker was 1.15 miles in so reckoned that I was about where I needed to be. Hauling My Carcass was within 10 feet of me at all times and I was feeling relaxed and confident. All was well until I reached the 4 mile marker when a warm tingle started to make itself known beneath my left knee. I knew the feeling immediately as I had had the same thing happen during my training for last years Royal Parks. Oddly, it had not reappeared in over a year but had decided to rear it’s ugly head again. I tried to ignore it but knew what was probably going to happen next. The warm numbness begins to spread from just below the knee, down the front of my shin and into my foot. The whole of the bottom of my leg then goes numb and it becomes difficult to run as I can’t gauge at what point my foot is striking the floor. Suddenly, I didn’t know what to do. I wanted to walk to see if the feeling came back but knew that if I stopped, it would be hard to start again. So I delivered myself an ultimatum… I would continue to run. I would not stop… I could slow a little to see if that helped but stopping was out of the question. If I stopped all manner of bad stuff would happen to me – and I would not allow myself to meet up with iliketocount and Jogblog for pizza afterwards. So now, with my new found incentives, I pushed on to mile 6 where the numbness started to subside. I was beginning to feel confident about completing the race but knew that I had lost between 2 and 3 minutes over the preceeding few miles and sub 2hrs was going to be almost impossible to acheive. I was still feeling pretty good around seven and a half miles when I was passed by a man dressed as a dalmation. The mp3 player was brought in to play at this point and the last 6 miles was run to the sound of The Prodigy, Crystal Method and the Run Lola Run soundtrack.
The last 5 miles are hard as they snake through Hyde Park, switching back on themselves and the last three quarters of a mile are psychologically hard – you know you’re close but there is an incline up the first part of the finishing straight and as you reach the brow the finish is off in the distance. And you run… and run… and run and the finish line doesn’t seem to get any closer.
And then it is closer. And you’re nearly there. And you cross the line in 2:02:44 and come to a gradual stop. And then feel dizzy and go over to the railings and hang on. And the nice man from St Johns Ambulance comes over and asks if you’re alright and you lie and say yes.

Hauling My Carcass got a pb and I didn’t walk. Result.

Bags collected and warm dry clothes exchanged for cold, damp sweaty ones, hook up with HMC’s LG and it was off to meet Shaun and Cathy. Shaun, it turns out, ran a blinder and you can read about here. A couple of drinks in a little pub a few hundred yards from Knightsbridge and then we all went for pizza. It was a great way to celebrate and we chatted and ate and drank for a very enjoyable couple of hours.

The Royal Parks Half is a great race. Roughly a 50/50 split between the street and sights of London Town and through the Parks. It’s well organised, plenty of loos, efficient bag stash and a food festival too. I will almost definitely be back next year.

Soundtrack to this post: Dark Entries – Bauhaus




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