After yesterday’s horror of a run, I wasn’t too sure if was up to a long one this evening. Target was 11 miles or more. Ideally 13 if I felt ok, but I accepted that I’d have to run them slowly to protect the legs a bit. They have been sore all day and particularly so this morning when I awoke in pain!
I decided that the only way forward was an interesting run, something that I enjoy and that would keep me going. I decided to head out over the ranges, do the normal uphill start, a loop around the Ash side and then some of the cool little trails around the firing ranges themselves, particularly No.3 range.
It didn’t quite pan out that way.
I headed up to the ranges to the normal gate start point. Then up the hill, get to the next gate, turn left, down the big hill, round past the little hut and back to my start point.
I stopped momentarily to decide what to do next. Another lap of the ranges would be 4 miles, then some messing about on the trails, then home. Could be about 11. Or I could go round the Pirbright side of the ranges. Not sure how far, but can’t be any bigger than the Ash side can it?
Well, yes it can. Much.
At 9 miles (that’s about 3.5 miles into the ‘how far can it possibly be?’ test run) I began to think I wasn’t going in the direction of where I would pick up the normal circuit trail, I was just getting farther and farther away from Ash. By 11 miles the light was starting to fade, my anxiety started to rise as I still didn’t have a clue where I was and my pace had picked up to try and cover more ground. At 13 I finally picked up the trail I knew but with little light left I figured I’d better take the shortest route and cut the loop short by heading directly across and out of the ranges. This bit wasn’t much fun. I know the trail to be full of holes and areas of loose and large stones that I struggle with in daylight! I tentatively stumbled along until I reached the familiar gate where I started. Once across the ranges I headed down the hill in the woods. Immediately it’s pitch black, my eyes struggle to adjust. The trail has a pair of concrete tank tracks that I am barely able to discern with my eyes in such darkness, but my feet can tell when I stray from them. I follow this track down. Repeatedly the trail drops steeply, something you don’t notice when you see it coming, but without the benefit of advance warning, it takes me by surprise more than once. After what seems like an age of temporary blindness, I see the road ahead.
Home. 16.25 miles covered today. I’m later than I wanted to be, I have a busy evening ahead.
I have a surprise for you all tomorrow. In the dying days of my year long challenge, the opportunity of an exciting event has appeared and I’m going for it.
Today’s shoes: Lime/Blue Kayano 17s
Miles today: 16.25
Miles to date: 1639.95
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”
Thomas A. Edison