Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Essexwalker 26 mile LDWA (10th April 2011)

So, what happened???

Well, a few days before we went to Essex I strangely started with Shin Splints. Running in my road shoes which I don’t normally do (run in them or run on roads lately), I assumed this was this was the reason.

On the morning of the run Chris and I headed to the start in Purleigh. This is the same place the Blackwater marathon started from and this route actually covers about 90% of the same route.

I was a little worried about the shin splints and hoped they wouldn’t return and cause me to pull out early. I set off (Chris decided to set-off 10 mins after everyone else) and things started well. However about 2 miles into the run the shin splints started. I pushed on and then at about 2 1/2 miles I pulled a muscle just above the back of my knee (is that the lower ham?). It ached but I carried on slowly with a small limp in my stride (Chris passed me about this point too).

My first thought was to see how it was at Checkpoint 1. I was definitely last at this point. The runner in front was just in sight and I tried to make a bit of ground. By the time I approached the 1st checkpoint (4 miles) I was just about with him. The pain hadn’t worsened and the shin splints had eased a little so after a quick drink I decided to continue on and re-assess the situation at Checkpoint 2 and head off running with the other runner for a while from this point.

I’m not going to describe the route, most of it is covered in my Blackwater Marathon post. We ran on and on reaching Checkpoint 2 I was no worse and without the shin splints (Which incidentally I haven’t had since). A quick stop for a biscuit and juice and I decided to carry on the whole route as long as things didn’t get worse. The next section was the dreaded Sea Wall. This sea wall is about 5 miles long and isn’t the most interesting parts of the run, however this time the weather was far better (if not a little too hot). Running together still for a while I couldn’t keep up and gradually dropped back and back. Reaching the 15-16 mile mark and Checkpoint 3 I was starting to tire and the leg pain was getting to me (it was more the constant ache that was). After too long a rest at CP3 setting off again was a struggle. I’d started to stiffen up and it took a good 5-10 mins to loosen up but not fully.

This section of the route differs from the Blackwater Marathon in that it adds a 4km section making up for a section cut out between CP1 – CP2. By this point I’d decided enough was enough and followed the direct route I knew to miss out this section and straight to CP4.

At CP4 I could have got a lift back to the start but I was still convincing myself I could finish what was left of the route. So I set-off after another rest and after about 400m I decided to get out the map and find the direct route to the finish.

I arrived at the finish shattered and a little sore after covering 22.5 miles, gutted.

I haven’t run right since then!!!!

No comments:

Post a Comment