Sunday, 10 April 2016

Ben Campbell Recce = mud!

Just three of us in the woods on Thursday night, Gavin, Becky and myself. It was a fast one! Second fastest time since I got my watch last summer. Gavin reckons we can do it sub-50 once it dries out and we can run in the light again... I'm not convinced!! The fastest I've ever done it is 51:xx (according to somebody else's watch) and I nearly died then.

Friday and Saturday we just streak saver mile shuffles in the dark.

On Sunday a group of Harriers and some of JDW's other clients did a social recce of the Ben Campbell 10k route through Kilburn Woods. It's even hillier than our normal Thursday route. It was drizzling and a bit misty at the start.
I was amazed at how many people had turned out in their road shoes!!
The route is hard to describe really, especially if you don't know Kilburn Woods, but it starts at the White Horse car park and goes downhill through lots of mud! Then up the Angle Path, quite pleased as I ran all the way up that. Along the top track and down the Zig-Zag Hill, lovely fast downhill. I was keeping up with JDW, Becky, Gavin and Laura B at this point. Along the main track, then left at the main junction and sharp right up the muddy bank, avoiding the fallen tree. Had to walk up this climb, it gets very awkward under foot, sloppy mud. The climb takes us over the shoulder of Hood Hill, but not to the summit, and we go down the Unicorn, very muddy at the bottom some people going in up to their knees!!! Regroup at Osgodby Gate, bank into the woods and up the other Hood Hill path, again just the shoulder avoiding the summit. (The summit is a scheduled monument or something so I guess the race was allowed so long as it didn't go over the top.) The run down the other side is what I think the hardest descent as it is slick rather than deep mud and very steep. Safely down that, back on the main track for a long uphill all the way back to the finish. (That bit doesn't have a name, will have to think of something...)
I managed to stay with Gavin and almost at the front for the whole run, with a little bit of downhill mincing thrown in for good measure!! The long uphill finish nearly killed me and I felt a bit sick!
Soon recovered though and headed home as we were taking SD ice-skating in the afternoon!

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