October running Update

I decided to make October interesting and sign up to a virtual race with Run Your Own Races. After searching through the site I really liked the look of their wolf medal and to earn this I needed to complete 100km in the month. I worked out I had a marathon, 5k and 10k race booked giving me more than half the required amount needed, surely I could do the rest?

October started with a long flight over to Chicago. First run of the month saw my eldest daughter and I complete the International 5km run through the streets of Chicago. It was such an amazing experience, and if I lived closer one I would do regularly. 

It was a warm up though for the big one the next day, the marathon. If you read my updates you will know I am hoping to complete all 6 of the Abbott World Marathon major series. I have been lucky enough to run London and Berlin so far, and Chicago would be my third! Half way there. The run itself didn't go exactly to plan but it was such an awesome race and quite possibly one of my favourites. You can read more here

As I was boarding the plane home from Chicago I received an email asking if I would like to be part of a relay time for the Yorkshire marathon. It was an offer I could not refuse. I would be given the opportunity to run part of the Yorkshire marathon, a course I have many demons on, without running the whole thing. I said yes and was advised my leg would be 5km.

Before the relay I had never met any of my team mates before, so upon arrival I had no idea who to look for or what to expect. I was a little nervous, what if they were all elite athletes and there is me with jet lag and tired legs. Well I thought, it's only 5km. Only upon meeting my team I was asked if I wanted to change legs and do the 8km leg instead, I knew the route and the past two times I ran the full marathon this is where I messed up so I agreed. I thought it would give me a chance to put things right.

The heavens had opened and it was a very wet run. We stood and chatted at the change over point waiting for our team mates to arrive and pass over the baton. I was just trying to remember what my team mate looked like and had to rough guess when they would show up. I would stand out in the rain waiting for them to arrive and then nip quickly back in the double decker bus in a bid to warm back up. I had given my foil blanket away to a small dog who was making it very well known how cold and wet they were, and then I gave my second to a small child who was equally as cold. 

I watched the front runners whizz past and cheered on a friend, I waited to see my other friends further down the pack come past and cheered them on also. It was soon my turn and I began to run. It was strange starting on fresh legs when the marathon runners are at mile 17. I dodged as many people as I could and ran a very comfortable, but rainy, 5 miles to hand over the baton. 

A marshall told me I could either wait 30 minutes or continue running with my team mate so I opted to keep running. It was only 5km to the end now. We chatted as we went and watched the weary marathon runners. It was such a strange sensation to be running with people who had completed 20 miles plus. I knew how each of them felt. It wasn't long before the iconic final hill lay in front of us and with it I had completed 13km of the Yorkshire marathon. The 100km challenge was looking more and more likely now, 30 km left to do and a 10km race still to come.

An opportunity to run on the track arose in the middle of the month and so I decided to give it a go. It has been a while since I have run on the track and I wasn't sure I had any speed in my legs to be honest. I gave it my best shot, but left a little disappointed knowing in the past I have done mych better. Still it was another 10km ticked off the list, nearly there now.

A steady and enjoyable club run followed by a parkrun with the eldest and all that was remaining before my 10km race was 15km to complete 100km. I was so close now. Scarborough 10km was my race. I will admit my legs were tired. I wasn't sure if I could get round or even run it all but I would certainly give it a go.

We booked a hotel for the night before, my Mum came and stayed with me and the kids and we had a mini holiday. It was actually really lovely and I would certainly do it again. The hotel was located at the 3km mark so I had a short walk in the morning to the start line. Watching the sun rise as I walked was just amazing and I felt really chilled going into the run.

Unfortunately my legs just wouldn't warm up and I really struggled in the first 1km. A lady fell over just in front of me and the noise of her hitting the floor made me panic. I had to stop and help and only left when I knew she had enough support and first aid on the way. The fall played on my mind the rest of the race. I heard familiar screams and my children were waving and shouting from the foot path, it was a pleasant surprise and it gave me a bit of a boost. Finding my comfy pace and just sticking with it. Nothing fast or special but comfy, 

Miles ticked by and before I knew it I was back into the South Bay and heading towards the finish. My children once again stood waving and cheering. It was so lovely to see them and that gave me the extra strength I needed to finish. It wasn't a great time and was way off the pace I would normal do but still I have to be happy with the fact I got round. 

There was confusion with the kids fun run, originally a point to point course. I had sent my Mum to the finish line to wait, and now it was a loop. Little Man was not that bothered and I ended up carrying him most of it. The girls however did amazingly well.

I was still a couple of Km's short of the challenge so there was only one thing to do, run! I decided to test J and see how he would cope and I was so surprised he managed 6 miles or 10km and not complain about his leg once! It was just great to be running with him again.

That final run with J meant I completed my challenge and achiever over 100km in October. The medal, by the way, is awesome!!

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