Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Tired legs at the Les Allcorn 10k

After 12 miles on Sunday and a 17 mile Monday, I didn’t feel like doing anything yesterday. It was hardly Super Tuesday.  I closed my ‘well ordered’ files after work. I couldn’t even be tempted to answer the phone in time when it rang at two minutes past five, even as I stood dipping a tea bag into a mug while gawping wearily out of the window (but not looking at anything much at all). It had not been what you call a very productive day.  Now at this point there are choices. I could a) slink off to sit in the early evening sun and read and snooze awhile  or b) force myself out on the bike or for a slow trot around the lanes c) don my wellies and help Aunt Aggie collect slugs for her ‘pet’ project in the back garden or d) pick up my running cudgels and take part in the Les Allcorn multi-terrain 10k round the scenic Hulne Park estate in Alnwick.   

I arrived an hour and a half later at the leafy race HQ with a caucus of around 160 other runners, a record crowd. It’s not a race I’ve done before and my fried nut burgers (which I’d ingested an hour earlier) were not the best selection of pre-race scoff.  Let me tell you those kidney beans take a while to digest.
There were plenty of runners from local clubs. I also spied my old dentist who I snapped at Blaydon and the Druridge 10k in previous days, and whom I passed on Monday night while out on the road. He's got the bug for sure.

The route climbs gently for the first mile or so before levelling off followed by a long easy downhill stretch on tarmac before reverting to gravel track which runs along the floodplain. I started slow and kept the fast front-loaders in view for the first 2km at which point I decided to up the pace a bit, catching the flying dentist at 3km ( say aaaww...) in the process.
Jane H, the first lady (but not in the presidential sense) was 40 metres ahead and eventually I came up level at 5km. However, at 6km my resolve withered and the hard money moved to my running mate as she began to pull away. I had no answer to her power politics and my campaign began to sag further at 7km as another runner came past. By the end of the event I was in the red and felt Mondays miles, but it was a nice run and, potentially, could be quite a fast course.  My time of 38:47 (13th) was quite slow but I enjoyed the evening and took home a top of the range Les Allcorn mug just to remind me that when I feel like I’ve got no energy left, I really haven’t and to clear off to a quiet corner and snooze. Thanks to Alnwick Harriers.   

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