The Grim Reaper Ultra-marathon in Lincs, was a total bust as I got a could-not-be-shaken chest infection the week beforehand and was in bed for two days and on anti-biotics. It was so bad it was practically Man-Flu. So I thought that attempting to complete a 70 mile event was probably not the best idea.
Not to be put off, I re-focussed on the Back 2 Endurance 12 hour event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia a month later and (surprisingly) finished 7th overall and 1st Female for my first outright gender win! This was mostly due to the fact that almost everyone stopped to have lunch & sit out of the main heat of the day, whereas I just opted for liquid calories and kept plodding slowly on. Chicken rice holds no lure for The Vegetarian!
I have bought & paid for an entry to the Amsterdam Marathon 2016 (The Netherlands, Europe) but as the event draws nearer I realise there’s no real motivation to do it. It was a lazy choice where I thought I could easily chip some time of my current PB. [Oh how fkn dull is that!] Moving country has to take priority and the expense and time to travel there is just too much. It will be there next year and having experienced the Mamores Half Marathon part of the Glencoe Marathon Festival, I realise that there are other events I would probably enjoy more. 2016 might be barren of the 26.2 but I’m actually OK with that.
The hillyish road race in Aberdeen-Shire, the Dandara 10K, gave me a 60% WAVA and a chance to wear the new club colours for the first time. Other than that, 10Ks suck. Let’s move on.
The Hebridean 3 half marathon series, saw me sail through the first four races, winning a FV40 and team prize along the way, as well as course bests and an overall PB which was a big surprise. All this, only to come close to ditching the attempt to complete all five after sustaining a badly sprained ankle 3 days before the final race, read: black foot which I was unable to dorsi-flex. But Goonies never say die so I strapped that leg to within an inch of its hobbly life and oohed and ouched my way to a slow but maximum effort finish, which was rewarded with the Overall Series Age category prize. Well, every dog has her day!
Support runner functions
Myself and Mr. Swimms successfully accompanied JJM over the 95 miles of the West Highland Way Race in June to a hard fought 32 hour finish, amongst cries of Never Again from both runner and support team members. But after some sleep and that distance runners memory lapse where you forget the pain and torture and only remember the race bling and post-race grub, we are all ready to move on and plan some more trail adventures in the future. We never wore The Speedoes though so this remains a bucket list target which we all kinda wish each other would forget!
I was also very humbled and privileged to be requested as run-buddy for my friends hubby’s first half marathon. The event was in honour of his Dad who passed away earlier in 2016 and was to raise awareness and funds for the hospice which supported him. A mammoth £2.5K (and counting) has been raised and in typical hill-walker/ climber fashion, the very hilly Mamores Half marathon along the end of the West Highland Way, was the event of choice. We did really well, finishing in 26th/28th in our relative age categories. The rookie made it home without a scratch. The so-called experienced runner e.g. moi ended up with chaffage and bleeding parts due to a face plant just before the last rise!
I wouldn’t mind a shot at 60% WAVA now that I’ve moved up into the FV40 or Veteran category. It’s a tough group as I’m roughly the same age as Paula Radcliffe, Jo Pavey and Liz Yelling so my World Association of Veteran Athletes score is a % of these fine ladies. [Actually, it isn’t but I tell myself this to make myself feel better at scraping in around 50% for the last few years. The WAVA is actually an inverted curve showing average decrease in speed with age]. I need to score the WAVA time at three different distances and in the past, my best age adjusted times have been (relatively) at 1 mile, 5K and 10K and these are the distances I probably raced the most, pre-Achilles bust up. To date I’ve got a 5K, 10K and was 6 seconds too slow at the half-marathon distance.
For 60% I need the following times (in red, if I’ve already achieved faster in races in the last five years):
- 1 Mile at 7:22
- 3K at 14:34
- 5K at 25:29
- 5M at 41:42
- 10K at 52:14
- 10M at 1:25:33
- 1/2 marathon at 1:53:22
- Marathon at 3:57:44
….and just for sh*ts n giggles, this is what a 60% WAVA would look like at the ultra-distance, however, 50% is usually a pipedream so this is just for info and will never be a real target.
- 60K at 5:38:20
- 12 hour event = 128 Km (ca. 80 miles)
or I can take the easier way out and do some shorter distances, which should be readily achievable since I’m speedier on track than I am fast over distance, if that makes sense.