It was Sunday morning and the weather reports had promised a windy, wet and cold day the start of autumn. Three of us myself Nicola Morris and Helen Lawrence headed North prepared for a run in these conditions.
We arrived in plenty of time and bumped into Keith peace who also had made the journey up. The facilities were in a school but also next door to a leisure centre. Parking was easy and we headed to the school hall were there was no official baggage but I was told its pretty unlikely to get stolen!!So I left my bag there.
The start line was just outside the school gate so after a little warm up as it was getting cold we assembled at the start. The marshals were strict about no headphones in all correspondence and at the start, luckily I never run with headphones so it didn’t make any difference to me.
After this we were off undecided at the start if I should race or take it easy and practice my marathon pace it wasn’t long before I got carried away and went off far too fast. We ran out into a main road then started winding through some little villages it was very scenic and too start with I was running with some of the south Cheshire harriers, the race organisers so when a marshal shouted to them no short cuts to avoid the hills I knew I may be in for a hilly run. At around 5 miles and in a nice little village I found myself running with two runners from tretcham(not sure that’s right spelling) I stayed with them and for a few miles we kept together, but at mile 8 ish the one lad left the other waving buy to him and shouting buy too me I discovered he had been pacing him. We ran a sharp left and over a bridge with a stream under, very nice. The one lad was still with me but was struggling to stay with me so I went on ahead. Now through the country lanes we were gradually going up and at mile nine there was south Cheshire’s version of the killer mile!!! I knew I was going to slow here but there was no way I was walking and at the top I was quite proud of the fact I didn’t walk and may have got to the top even if it was slow.Carrying on winding through country lanes I ran past farms and a few fields of cows,this run was really like the long runs I do around the peacock.The weather actually started too get hot at one point and marshalls were situated with water regularly although it was cups which I still have not mastered running and drinking out of theses.At around mile 13 still running through lanes it started too seem a bit lonely not fast enough too keep up with the front runners but faster than the runners behind.I knew I would soon be back out onto the final straight as it was a one lap loop out and back.A few more windey and undulating bits and around mile 15 I started to recognise we had run past this village.5 miles to go and happy too know I was on my way back deciding too keep the pace I was at rather than race back after all this was training for a marathon for me and getting my marathon pace race seemed more important at this point than a 20 mile pb.At 18 miles I came across the most enthusatic marshall I have ever encountered,the marshalls the previous station had mars bars and jelly babies on offer which I happily took.Two miles left and before I knew it I was back running into the field too finish my time was 2.38.08 not a pb but happy with that and confident I now know how to pace myself properly too get the marathon time I want in October.
The goody bag was a t-shirt and gingerbread man(unfortunately for me,im allergic to ginger)some oats and a drink. There was also massage available and cakes for a donation.
Overall an extremely well organised event and south Cheshire harriers give 100 enthusiasium.I would definitely recommend this race.