My lead up to today's race was eventful to say the least. A stress free run in the snow and slush Thursday was followed by a fall on the ice on Friday morning as I walked to the station. My butt took most of the fall but I put out my left hand to brace for impact and got up with it feeling a little sore. During my day in the office the hand got gradually more uncomfortable and swollen and I eventually gave in to my wife and colleagues calls to go and get it checked out, not before running 5 miles though. I couldn't have my sequence of 5 runs a week being broken! 4 hours in A&E later we had a splint and a diagnosis. A bad sprain and a small chip fracture, the little shard of bone had been moving around, causing trouble and leading to the swelling. The splint should be enough, come back Monday afternoon to see the specialist. Not ideal, but about as good as I was expecting.
I ran in the splint on Saturday, I felt tired throughout but the arm didn't effect me on my 5 mile test run. So I gave myself the all clear to run the 15 mile race as planned. I couldn't have my 2017 challenge stopped at the first hurdle. The Benfleet 15 is no ordinary 15 miler either. I had run this twice previously, but that was on the old course before it transferred to the Hadleigh Mountain Bike start. The new course was even more brutal than the old one, good size hills at both the start and finish, but with a lot of the middle section the same, the sticky mud, the grass, the wet, but mercifully pretty flat.
The big inclines on the course I elected to walk, my training has been pretty exclusively on the flat, and on the pavements, so the cross country surface and undulating terrain definitely weren't ideal for me. The arm meant I was a little more watchful, reporting to Lauren that I had fallen, and I would have been in the dog house bigtime! Thankfully I kept my feet throughout and made it safely to the finish via the monster climb at the end.
Today's race had the added perk of my Friend's Ross and Charlotte running and with their partners cheering, along with my wife we had a nice motley crew. Ross finished 5th and Charlotte and I, although running separately throughout finished within seconds of each other. A trip down to the Harvester for a burger and buckets of tea went someway to restoring my energy. I will add pictures to this blog later when I have them as well as my official time and position. Unofficially I have it as 2:17:42 for my tough 15 miles.
Once again if you could make any kind of donation towards my 2017 challenge on Justgiving that would be massive. I did run 15 miles with a broken bone, that's got to be worth a few quid. Here is the link: