Celtic Plate 100km

I would get a coffee as this may be a long read…….

6pm Friday night and we were ready for the off.  I was rested and calm as we headed to the garage to fill the car with fuel.

Click…… “Oh shit Rach I have just put 32 litres of unleaded into our diesel car”  I had as well, so went to pay and told the attended we had a problem, as if like magic he produced the Fuel Doctors card and some 45 minutes later an Irish chap appeared and drained the car. By 8pm we were £260 worse off but the car was full of diesel and we were heading north. I had been all for going home at this point and my calm exterior was a stressed mess. We drove at 70 all the way officer and stopped somewhere around Carlisle.  I slept like a baby that night.

Saturday morning and we were heading to the Strathclyde parkrun where Ian, Sandra and “family” were also running on route to the 100km. Ian was jogging with a pair so I took Kade and we just chatted all the way round until being separated by a doggy stop. At this point Kade decided he was a race dog again and we kicked off to the line taking a few places on the way. Time for coffee and a social with the nice people from parkrun before heading north to Perth.

Saturday night was dinner with the team at a local Italian and the stunning realisation that the only people with Welsh accents in the team were the management. It was during dinner that I announced to the team that I would be running sensibly as I had concerns about having not done enough long runs, a statement that was met with much surprise. Come 9pm and everyone was heading for bed.

Sunday morning arrived well 4am which was 3am and breakfast was eat before then snoozing for another hour. We all met in the lobby of the hotel at 0600 and headed to the park.  Once in the park everything was setup and I was ready to race. Felt pretty good before the off.

THE RACE – 42 laps of a loop that is 2.3XXkms long, people often say “oh laps how boring” but you always know where you are and this can be quite comforting after a few hours.

The first hour was drama free largely running with Ian and chatting a bit, at barely 8min miles it should be.

The second hour was more of the same but I started to feel a hot spot under my left foot. The last time I had this problem so early was LA a year ago in the Ruuz so I reacted quickly and changed to my Nike Free 5. Good or bad this calmed my foot down.

I made halfway in just under 4 hours and all pretty much to plan as I had no food issues and no fatigue. My foot was holding together fine but by this point there was no doubt that my quads were starting to get sore. I have thought about this a lot and two things come to mind. I put Frees on which saved my feet but given I had not run more than 20 miles in a pair had this been my downfall. The reality is that although I am running marathons quite easily in 2.5X I have not done the long runs I am use to doing.  Barry was supposed to supply the 40 miler and I had then planned to do a few big weeks before backing off but thanks to being ill I lost the week before Barry and the week after so although I tabbed out another 3 hour effort I had nothing of distance.

Now this is the funny thing about blogging and races, the first half took about 4 hours and I had quite a lot to say. The second half took over 4 and a half hours yet there is very little to say about it.

Here we go……

5hours and 14 minutes and the blister under my foot finally went pop, you get a wet feeling in your shoe followed by pain and then relief as it all calms down and your foot works properly.

5hours and 19 minutes and the first cramp, at this point it really was all over and just a case of jog on and get to the end. With over 3 hours of running to do this is a long hard road.

From here on my pace just dropped and dropped as I stopped most laps to put cold cream, muscle rub, Ibrophen gel (basically anything) on my legs to try to keep them moving.  The system worked well as although I was moving slowly I was moving and in my mind I never had any doubt I would finish.

The last hour saw my pace improve and I am putting this down to a realisation that I was close to the finish so therefore I stopped stopping :¬)

I crossed the line in 8.33.24 a PW of some 12 minutes and 32 minutes from my best. I was holding the Welsh flag and walking, I think a lot of people were disappointed I walked in and I know I was asked by a few people WHY? It is hard to explain how honoured I am to run in the red of Wales and how much I appreciate the opportunity given to me and frankly I wanted to soak up the atmosphere because it was probably the last time I will do this. I have tried a number of different approaches to the long races and I think I need to accept that my  body cannot cope with these long races.

Going forward I will run up to about 50kms and if I have a good winter I may well chance the Barry 40 but only if I feel I can race.

Sunday night I had my Pizza and ice cream but stayed in my room, I was feeling pretty down and embarrassed by my performance so needed some me time. Thank you Wales it has been fun.

Monday was a long day in the car as Rach and I headed off to see MiniG who was turning 10. 7hrs in the car so we could take her out for dinner and give her a present a new NOTEBOOK !!!!!! Lets hope she doesn’t break it :¬)

Sat here now on Wednesday morning I have DOMS at about 2 out of 10 but am not running due to the state of my foot. This evening I will do the local 10 mile bike TT, why ? because I can :¬)





4 Responses to “Celtic Plate 100km”

  1. 1 Running Bhoy
    March 30, 2011 at 7:32 am

    Nae luck Gobi. But no shame or embarrassment at all – not every race can be good. More than a few others had bad days on Sunday. You know yourself what went wrong in the build-up – get that right next time, and there WILL be a next time.

  2. March 30, 2011 at 8:15 am

    Never be disappointed with a race, it was the best you could do on that day, on a different day with different build up the result you are looking for will still be there.

  3. March 30, 2011 at 9:58 am

    Gobster – you represented your country, you ran as best as you could on the day – that makes you a star in my eyes. Well done mate.
    You’ll learn from this and get better.

  4. 4 TRO Saracen
    March 30, 2011 at 10:14 am

    Feel for you mate, well done on bringing it home and 100% spot on for making the most of the honour of competing in your national vest. If I ever achieve such a thing, I’ll milk it for sure. Well remember the exploding blister feeling from Ironman.

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