Friday, February 24, 2017

Lostock 6 anyone?

Think it was just YJ, EYJ and I last year (plus Sweaters).

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Build up for NYM 100 has finally started

January was a bit of a dead loss with the cold virus that had been doing the rounds shortly before picking up a calf injury (the day we met up at Rivi Bowling Green café) which restricted me to no more than two mile runs. A couple of weekends ago I managed to do a parkrun followed by an additional 7 miles, so I was now up to 10 miles without exacerbating the calf.
The plan was to do the Amble but when I got round to entering two weeks before the event, found that for the first time in many years, it was full. Even with my connections, I was unable to wangle an exception, such was the number who had been turned away.
At about the same time, the route description for this year's LDWA 100 over the North York Moors had finally been published (or at least a route on which recce is allowed).
So a conversation with Julie and daughter Diane resulted in going over to her house in Thirsk with a plan to run the final legs of the route which finishes back in Malton. I had thought of starting from Goathland but that would have added nearly seven miles and the weather forecast was not exactly encouraging so plumped for the start of stage 14 at Stape Village Hall. Stape makes Rivington seem like New York! After dropping off our current dog at the kennels, Julie dropped me off at Stape at about 10.30, ensuring that I was fully waterproof and windproof with sleeves tucked inside sealskinz gloves. I was thoroughly prepared for absolutely foul weather at the start with wet sleet and a dusting of snow and 22 miles of solo running ahead.
Luckily after a couple of miles, the weather eased a little and the terrain became a little more sheltered. the early part of the route included only a couple of 200ft ascents, nothing to write home about (might say differently when climbed after 80 miles and however many hours) before reaching Lockton and heading into Dalby forest.
Just after Lockton, I chatted to another runner who was also reccying. He had run from Thornton-le-dale and would return from Lockton. A mile or so later I could see him catching me so waited for him and we ran together to Thornton. He also had been unable to get into the Amble and recognised me from last year's event when I was involved in giving CPR. Lockton to Thornton should have been a bit quicker but it was somewhat muddy underfoot : hopefully by May it will be drier. Arriving in Thornton at 1.10, I decided to eat my lunch sheltered by the walls of the village hall which was thronging with an auction for vintage car parts. Have you ever eaten lunch wearing sealskinz gloves? I now know it is feasible. I wasn't going to remove them : I was getting colder by not moving anyway. The final two legs from Thornton were even wetter with many of the country lanes almost completely flooded. One section seemed to go through the middle of a field of vegetables. Checking the map revealed it was definitely a footpath although it was hard to believe on the ground.
I had allowed seven hours and taken my head torch but despite not making much speed over the final two legs, arrived to meet Julie, now with Diane, Neal and Oscar, with an hour to spare in Malton.
With two more weekends planned for April and May, I should at least not have any navigation issues - just need to find the time to get the mileage up.
Diane helped with that on the Sunday by inviting me to accompany her on her longest training run of the year (7 miles) as she prepares for the Edinburgh Half Ironman (she was originally going to do the Bolton Ironman but has now switched to a more sensible distance).
Today I will head to Astley Park for the cross country, my first of the year, and some more tomorrow.
Stava trace here:

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Saturday 11th February 2017 - UTUP

Just a word of apology to anyone who reported for Saturday's UTUP (8:30 at the Bottom Barn). I'd forsaken our usual assembly to drive to Entwistle Reservoir to watch the Amblers through.

I ran from the reservoir back along the course to the point where the long and short courses diverge and saw the last of the runners through. On the way there Andy F and I exchanged greetings at which point it appeared that he was the leading runner, only a few minutes behind the leading walkers who had started a full hour before the runners.

I then returned to the reservoir where I blagged a couple of sandwiches off the feeding team before running a lap of the reservoir and returning home. Once again, apologies to you if you were hoping for company at Rivington - I'll be there on the 18th.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017

Chipping Trigs - Modified Format - Sunday 2nd April 2017

If you scroll back on this blog to an entry dated Sunday 28th August 2016 you will see a report on our assault on the three Chipping Trigs the day before.

This was summarised as a good outing, but with too much road.

In furtherance of his neverending quest for more miles, our Duracell Bunny is planning to repeat the run, with the suggestion that it can be made more pleasurable for sensible folk by driving between the second and third fells as follows:- The group initially convenes on the car park near to the top of Beacon Fell. Car 1 is left there and we all proceed to Chipping in Car 2.

From there we run to Fairsnape, thence across to Beacon Fell. There, the 'non-roadies' drink coffee, and enjoy the visitors centre etc whilst the Bunny runs to Longridge Fell. Then we drive to a parking area near Longridge Fell and meet up with Duracell Bunny.

Then it's up to the trig and down across the fields and a short road section back to Chipping. Then Car 2 drives folk back to Car 1 on Longridge Fell and we all go home.

Any takers?

Monday, February 06, 2017

Park Chum - Saturday 4th Feb 2017

As a gesture of support for our raiding party at the Leverhulme Park Run (details please), I persuaded YJ to try the Lostock 'Park Chum'.  This was possibly conceived as something of a spoof on the Park Run series, but is already attracting some interest.

The start/finish is at the top Wilderswood gate and participants must summit Two Lads either on the way to, or on the way back from, the Pike. The Pike may be climbed either via the old toilet block and up the steps, descending to George's Lane via the Pike Race route, or by ascending via the Race route and then down the steps and past the toilet block. This effectively offers four route choices, all covering exactly the same ground, but just in a different order - a bit like Eric's piano playing. It's meant to be 5k, but we measured it at slightly more, about 3.2 miles.

To continue the similarity to a Park Run, runs must start on any Saturday morning, but with the flexibility of starting at any time between 9:00 and 10:30.

YJ had already done his usual 5 mile warm up (I kid you not) and we ran to Wilderswood from the Bottom Barn, intending to complete two laps of the course. Unfortunately, YJ gave me a 1 minute start and I put so much effort into staying ahead of him and he put so much effort into trying to catch me, that neither of us had the energy for the second rep. We returned to the cars via the Castle.

A good workout and we now both have our own marks to beat for this little time trial.

Give it a spin some time - possibly on a Saturday morning.

Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Mast Race 10k Sunday 29th January 2017 - Where Were You, Pauline?

I don't usually feel like paying out good money for local fell races over terrain that I regularly use for free, but I was feeling in need of a test of fitness and this one seemed to fit the bill.

It was priced at £12 for club members so I grasped the nettle and registered, only to find  that there was a processing fee that pushed it up to £14 - naughty! At that price it worked out at £2.25 per mile. I used to draw the line at £1 a mile, but on consideration, mild was 1/8d a pint when I started drinking; price rises over the years have not quenched my thirst - so, hey ho, on with the race.

The start was from Smithills School and the climb up Smithills Dean road combined with the cold air soon had me gasping for breath and walking. We carried straight on across Walker Fold road and encountered a significant amount of ice as we headed for (yes!) the Trespass Stone. I reached this in just under 32 minutes, but by then was already being baulked by descending runners. The baulking got worse on the narrow path after the sleeper bridge until the turning point about 400 yards short of the mast - it was a measured 10k course. From the Trespass Stone to this point took a further 19 minutes.

The return was much less problematic, with many fewer runners to encounter (14 minutes to the Trespass Stone) and a further 19 minutes down the tarmac, with the ice now all melted.

Total time 84 minutes - 51 up and 33 down. The race was won by Chris Farrell of Horwich in a time of 36:17 and Horwich took the team prize with 1st, 2nd and 6th. First lady was Paula Pilling V40 of Burnden in a time of 47:55. The race was particularly well supported by Burnden and it was in fact the first Burnden runner home who pointed out to me, later in the day in the Adlington Bay Horse that the medal actually portrayed (yes, you've got it again) the Trespass Stone! See below:-

It's the elongated black bit immediately below the mast - I can just about make out the inscription on the medal itself with a magnifying glass.

Not a brilliant run on my part, but an enjoyable one, if a tad pricey.