Last Tuesday I had to miss a race because of work, so this Tuesday I decide to miss work because of a race.
I am a big believer in strike while the iron is hot. There is not much point being in great shape in training, if you don’t bring it out for a race. Last weekend I ran well in a 5km Park Run, but it’s only a Park Run, so I want to get on the track and see what I can do. Last year I ran 15.28 in the Trafford 5000m, and I reckon I can go better this year. I haven’t actually managed to go faster in any race this year, so really keen on getting that done.
However, when I arrive at the venue, I find out from some other runners, that the organisers have moved the race in the schedule for no apparent reason. It will now start some 2 hours later at 8.30pm. It looks like hardly anyone is going to turn up. Steve Curley and Matt Shaw, good runners, have decided to do a session instead. I go with them. We have a great session on the grass, once I get my head around the disappointment.
My training lately has gone very much by feel. If I don’t feel like running, I don’t. If I feel like going fast, I go fast. It has been working really well. For the past 3 years I would be starting my training for Snowdon Race now. But it follows closely after London Marathon, and I always feel I am playing catch up. The transition from road to mountain is hard and painful, and I never do myself justice. So this year I have just decided to skip Snowdon Race, and focus more fully on Berlin Marathon in Autumn.
I spend the weekend with my God Kids, Isaac and Theo. We have a brilliant time doing mountains and camping and fires and all the things kids don’t get much chance to do living in London.
They play a game where they count the number of times I say ‘save your energy’, I think they give up somewhere around 48 times. They want to sprint, throw rocks, play fight, or swim in a lake, then sit down. Walking slowly and constantly up a mountain for hours is a new experience, but they get there fresh as a daisy.
I have conflicting emotions walking up Snowdon. I cannot believe the amount of stupid people I see wearing the most ridiculous clothes. At the top it is 4 degrees with 40mph winds, and people are soaking wet in t shirts, no rucksack, no gear.
But then, there is something admirable and inspirational about mankind. What are we all doing on a mountain in the first place?! No other animal would do this unless their survival absolutely depended on it.
Humanity’s rise to the top of the food chain is attributed to intelligence, but we also have some sort of innate ability and desire to endure, explore and overcome.