Well that hurt! ………and for about 4 days……….and that is just the short one
The weather had decided to turn the day before and it was driving wind and run as we arrived at Bowhill Estate near Selkirk.
I went to register and asked where the changing area was. With a smile I was pointed towards the courtyard outside. I was sure I had read there were changing facilities. Back to the car then for some flexibility exercises getting into tights in a small space and back to the start.
The event is really relaxed and we all waited by the start then got moved back 100m down the hill as we weren’t at the right bit. The briefing was basically it is going to be really wet muddy and slippy, enjoy yourselves. Simple but true.
The first 2km of the run is basically uphill and managing your heart rate became more important than speed with many walking.
Once at the top of the hill we were exposed to the rain and wind but were nicely warmed up by now. The biggest problem was keeping my shoes on in the 6 inches of mud we were running through.
On the descent I was rubbish and proper cross country runners went flying by. There is definitely a technique to going downhill quickly which I don’t have.
After about 4km we were on the bike. This was a blast. Lots of mud, puddles and people falling off!
I kept a good pace on the way round and overtook more than I lost. Being able to cycle up the hills helps over pushing (back to the technique again).
So all in it took about 50 minutes and my legs were burst. It had done as a race what I wanted though; a good workout and focus on run technique whether you like it or not.
Most importantly and perhaps surprisingly I really enjoyed it and it is good to mix up something different in the “off” season.