Monday, 16 February 2015

Carnethy Spectate, Conundrum XC, Sunday Swim and a Monday Long Run

Hmmm, snappy title!

Saturday dawned and I'd, rather wisely I thought, decided not to run the Carnethy 5 Hill Race this year. I chose instead to have my first run up in the hills in ages and take the camera and get some pictures of people coming off of Scald Law and then Carnethy.

It was very misty at the tops and  other photographers got nice clear clag-free shots. I wonder if maybe I should have been more flexible in my plan and stayed a bit lower. But it's authentic having hill runners burst out of the mist. Here are a few shots.

I ran 8.5 miles and chatted to a few dads. That seemed to be the theme of the day. First of all I met Mark Johnston who was with his daughter while Tracey was off for a run in the hills. Then, at the top of Carnethy I met Jonny Clark who has been struggling (sports-wise) these past few years with illness and injury. Back down at the Howe I met ex-Porty James Harrison. I asked him if he was still doing triathlons. (He was in the world triathlon championships a few years back.) He snorted and said he was a dad of three now. He's still running though and will be at the National XC at Callendar Park next week.

That was the most hill running I had done in quite some while and I knew my legs would be a little tight for the XC the next day...

Sunday came and we were off to Conundrum. Yes a place called Conundrum. Get over it. I wish I could. You see there's a joke in there but I can't quite get it out. It was well over an hours drive down into England-shire. Mike Lynch was along with us for the ride and was coming for his "maiden voyage" in the sea at Gullane later. The sun came out and I was beginning to think that everything was beautiful, but then it got all misty and it was mostly grey and cold for the XC.

I haven't got any pictures, I'm sure Peter will come up with some later. Notable on the course were some llamas and a vast estate of pig houses. It would have been nicer if they'd had little gardens. I was a bit scared they would chase me. And eat me. Haven't you read that Thomas Harris novel Hannibal? It helped me keep going when I wanted to stop. Come on, the pigs'll get you. They're coming for you!

I managed to keep pushing hardish all the way round, although it started to feel a bit desperate in the last few ups and downs to the finish. At the finish I had some kind of deep abdominal cramping pain going on. I have no idea which organ was implicated in this! I had a nice chat with Brian Davidson though, which took my mind off it.

After getting warm and getting some spicy parsnip soup and a roll and catching up with Peter and Mike, things started to smooth out again. Everyone who completed the series got a classy black buff, and Peter won a trophy clock, a clocky trophy....a...something! for being 1st over 50. He's awful proud of it.

Jeezo. Then it was time to be thinking about swimming. I wasn't feeling like it.
Mike took this picture of me and Peter crossing the road. I'm trying to teach him to look both ways.


So on the road back the sun came out again. Mike changed into his newly acquired wetsuit in the back. He had a few blips, finding he'd put a leg in a sleeve. I'd promised not to look so I don't know quite how this worked. When, further down the road, I chanced to look in the mirror, I saw that he'd also put on his hood and goggles. It was kind of surreal. Peter, there's a frogman in the back of the car.

At Gullane the skies had opened out. Jason Liddell of the fat bikes was also there and took some photos from the shore. The beach was silvery and the sea was calm but had regular well-formed waves rolling into shore. Occasionally it's breath-takingly beautiful at Gullane and yesterday was one of those occasions. Some kind of beginner's luck attaching to Mike I think. The sea is up to 5 degrees, which isn't warm, it's fridge temperature, but it was less severe than it has been. We had fun. A lot of floating about on our backs. Mike seemed to get suspended in a wave like a cling peach in jelly.

Photos from the waterproof camera. The next three photos are Jason Liddell's.

So today I wanted to do a longer run. Or maybe I could do it tomorrow. But I didn't want to put it off. But my quads were like bricks! So maybe if I went a flat run I wouldn't have to use my quads. So I went a long run.
I am proud to say I went out for 17.2 miles. There was a west wind and so I had to slog into the wind for 8 miles on the way back. It helped that the sun came out and there were all kind of things happening along the Portobello Prom to take my mind off my legs, including a young guy doing some kind of high tumbles on the sand.

Well that was a blogathon. Real life is catching up. My legs have stiffened into the shape of the chair. There's nothing for tea. I probably have to go to Tescos! I was going to start taking the wall paper off the hall today....I better get moving...


runtwo said...

Crikey, a full-on few days! Some great shots there, lovely light, especially the body in the wave!

Yak Hunter said...

Thanks Brian :-)