Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Hardmoors 60

A weekend away with Bob on the Yorkshire coast this time. Driving the van to Guiseborough on Friday night meant I did not have to get up early and feel travel sick after a coach ride from Filey. We pulled up around 9pm and found others with the same idea. A quick chat followed by hot chocolate and then bed. We slept well and so were up in plenty of time to help Jon and Shirley with registration and kit checks.

It was decidedly dull, slightly damp and about 10 degrees cooler than Lancashire so I was faffing about what to wear. The haematoma was still as bad so I wore the shin guards again. The coach was a little late so Jon's briefing and the start were put back a short while but by 8.15 we were herded out onto the lane.

Jon worryingly had a pistol to start the race. It did not fire at first but persistence paid off.

 I was determined not to set off too fast but...... I got pulled along and after the climb to High Cliff nab it seemed OK.

I should have realised and slowed down when I dropped Martin D but I was happy to catch Katie and Heather and show some new to the event the way. I was chatting happily and it was only when I arrived at Vista Mar Saltburn as first lady that I worried. It had been wetting out the mist all the way but I had not realised how wet we were. I did not feel the need for food yet (perhaps my second mistake) and so I shot straight through the CP and down to the sea front.

 I was looking forward to the run along the cliffs as this first bit has few of the slippy steps that we would meet later. It wasn't long before the effects of the early pace were felt and I was unable to run relatively gentle sections on the cliffs to Skinningrove. Damn. The girls went past as did several others. I ploughed on to Staithes the best I could and enjoyed the views and a very brief chat with Boris as he ran by. Heading up the steep cobbled road out of the village I spotted Bob. We all had a minor nav crisis near Port Musgrave but arrived in Runswick Bay unscathed. I was desperate for a cup of tea and a bit down when first they could not locate my drop bag, then there was no tea and then I did not fancy any food I could see. I set off before things could get worse but should clearly have been eating something by now. Luckily Bob had experimented with some tiny refillable bottles and I had one with a mix of two gels and a splash of water. being able to just have a mouthful or so was good. I did also manage a small bit of a Chia bar. In the dark on the H110 I had a nightmare on the beach looking for the ravine but today it was easy and we were soon on our way to Sandsend.

John K came past with his ever present smile and I tried to use him as a tow and concentrated on putting negative thoughts behind me. I was getting upset and for no apparent reason kept thinking of my dad. There was no CP here today  but a lovely surprise awaited me. Bob had parked along the prom and had a cup of tea waiting. I must have looked a state as I climbed into the van and slumped in the chair. I was worried Mick and Lorraine would run by but I had to stop and regroup. The tea and breathing space got me more positive and I set off at a bit of a hobble towards Whitby. I dislike running through the town as you have to dodge all the tourists and so it was a relief to find the Abbey steps, even the bottom of them. The new CP after the campsite was stocked with coke and I tried some- anything to get some fluid and fuel. It was better than I had hoped. I ran most of the next section alone but that was fine. I was not moving fast but forward progress was better than nothing. John V had a CP in the top carpark at Robin Hood's Bay and I had more coke and some watermelon. Sections with greasy uneven steps were becoming a nightmare and Boggle Hole lived up to my worst expectations. Before Ravenscar Martin D passed me going at a nice steady plod. You'd think I would learn.

I was starting to suffer by Ravenscar and it was good to see Bob again. I changed my socks but despite tape my ankle bone had rubbed raw again and it was all too damp for tape to stick. I tried to eat but had hoped for pizza like on the H110. I just did not fancy food. I felt churlish and manahed a small piece of cake and some fruit. Bob made me another cup of tea. I felt bad being so grumpy, especially as Sarah and Andy had given up their day to marshall. Leaving the hall I suddenly l felt very cold and had to stop to put my cag on. Probably further evidence that I was low on fuel. The greasy descents slowed me further and I was convinced others would soon catch me. Why didn't I just feel good that they had not done so yet? Climbing out of Hayburn Wyke I got warmer and had the sense to spot the weather was dry now and so changed out of a wet shirt. A bit late for all the rub sores on my torso but nevermind. I tried to lift the pace a bit as I knew Scarborough was not far. At this point I knew I was not going to beat my time from 2012 so all I could do was limit the loss.  I have an issue with my right foot which may well be Morton's neuroma. It sounds daft but is very painful. By Scarborough it was certainly making itself felt.  This town is always my low point. Apologies to those who live or come from there.  The flat wide prom should be easy to run round but I walked almost all of it, and it is miles. I barely raised a jog as I approached the CP at the Spa. Kelly looked understandable concerned as I collapsed into a chair and managed 3 small pieces of fruit and 1/3 of a cup of tea. I decided sitting there would not help and it was getting chilly. I also hoped that once past this town I would feel better. Well you can hope. Actually I did feel a bit better and made good tiime out onto the road above Cayton Cliff. I stopped and found my head torch and raised my spirits with the knowledge we did not have to drop all the way down to the landslip and climb back up this year. Here I was joined by two blokes who were uncertain of the way. We stuck together and I raised my pace and navigated us back to the cliff path and the camp sites. I could not keep up for ever but it was a start. I could see their torches ahead and tried not to let the gap grow. Less than ten miles. how bad can it be. Very ..when every step makes your toes hurt and you squeal. In my mind after the second campsite we are nearly there. Not so. You can see the lights of Filey but head out towards the Brigg. Here I caught up one of the blokes again. He was suffering too. I could hear the sea and so guessed the tide was in? I opted for the steps and not the beach. I think next time I will risk wet feet. Anyone watching me descend, climb and descend steps at this point must have had a good laugh.  Suddenly we were not only on the prom but the turning up into town was there. Finishing at the school this year cut about a mile of the race and in my state I was not complaining. I stomped up the steep hill the best i could, spotted the church and managed a jog to the finish. Then I collapsed on the stairs, received all sorts of goodies from Jon plus a hug from Bob.

 Bob gallantly went off to get me a towel, clean clothes etc and I tried to lie down. H55 all over again, although this time I lay on chairs not the floor and did stay awake.

A shower made improvement but I was trashed and did not feel like food. I must sort this out. It is not like me to turn down any food.

 All I wanted to do was go to bed. So after some quick Thank Yous we walked to the van , drove to the layby just beyond the school and I fell into bed. In a way mission complete. I had done the H55, H110 and H60 so I had completed the Triple Ring. I was pleased with my T shirt and trophies plus I love my hoody. I also was 4th female on the H60 and first V40 or V50 so not too bad I guess. Mick never did catch me up and Lorraine retired. I was exactly an hour slower than 2012 whereas martin D managed the same time again.


  1. Great report Karen, congratulations on the result and on the Triple Ring. Nice to put a face to your name too :D

  2. Nice! Glad that you still press on to seize your day and that you have the protective equipment and support with which to do it. However, nothing beats the proper treatment and health assists to carry one from what would seem like a permanent impasse. Take care!

    Johna Mccaa @ US HealthWorks