Monday, May 07, 2007

'Running up that hill...'

Yes, Kate Bush's song springs to mind as I reflect on the 10km run I completed yesterday.

Here's what happened......

Woke up in my brother's flat, felt a little nervous actually.
Had some toast with strawberry jam, lovingly prepared by my belle-soeur (that's French for Sister-in-Law, because she's French!)
Got ready.
Walked for 30 minutes with brother and belle-soeur to The Meadows which is where the race began and finished
Sorted myself out, warmed up, and then queued 10 minutes for the loo.....there were LOTS of portaloos, and LOTS of queues for them!
Got ready to run in the big line of 9,000 runners....I was quite near the back.
Started running!
The sun was shining, there was a good atmosphere, and I was really enjoying it.
Got to the Scottish Museum where we had to turn off Princes Street, and start running up the hill towards the Royal Mile. At this stage I was really, really hot (the weather was deceptive - I decided to keep my fleece because of a strong cold wind, and threatening rainclouds); but because of the bright sunshine and blue skies I decided to take off my fleece. I had to do this whilst running/walking up the hill, holding onto my water bottle, taking my ipod out of my pocket and attaching it to my interesting Krypton Factor-style challenge!
Commenced a lovely downward run towards the Scottish Parliament. On the way there were people cheering/clapping, a DJ playing Kaiser Chief's 'I Predict A Riot' which really spurred me on, a steel band etc.
We then started the long slog/climb up the road which passes the Crags (sitting below Arthur's Seat, for those familiar with Edinburgh geography)....this was a tough section to run because it was uphill, plus there was a VERY strong wind which we were all running INTO!
Reaching the top was relieving and we started a mild descent at the 6km mark.
I then saw Brother & Belle-Soeur at around 7.5km and they took a couple of photos of my back, because they nearly didn't see me, even though I was waving frantically at them!
This was followed by another gradual climb and then a small steep climb, before a gentle descent towards the finish line. Brother & Belle-Soeur caught me again on camera at the 9.5km mark, just before I found the impetus to sprint the last 400 metres. If only I could have that sort of energy all the way through, my finish-time would be mighty impressive!
Funnily enough, no sooner did I finish and pick up my goody bag and drink, the heavens opened and we had to take cover under a tent/gazebo structure. I felt sorry for those still running....

This run did take me longer than my last flat run around Regent's Park - 4 minutes longer in fact. My time was 1 hour and 10 minutes. I came 6101 out of 9000. So I am not your next Paula Radcliffe, that's for sure. But there's already one of her!

A BIG BIG HUMUNGOUS THANK YOU TO all my supporters - both the ones who sponsored me, and the ones who sent me their good wishes and prayers for completing the run successfully. It really does mean a lot to me to receive your support, in all its guises.

I have beaten my fundraising target and I am really happy that this money will be going to a really worthwhile cause that is CLIMB.

Here are some photos so you can get a taste of my experience in a more visual way! All courtesy of my dear Belle-soeur who is a fab photographer, and you can see more of her photographic delights by clicking here.

With my brother...
Queuing up to run....with a man in a wedding dress....?!!

Waving to the Commentator!

Waving to Belle-Soeur!



At the 7.5km stage...

Running....with fun fun fun fun?!

Just finished....needed some warmth! Belle-soeur said I resembled a crisp packet.

With nostrils flaring, I started to rehydrate myself...

Me and my medal.

GreenAbby x


Maylis & Hugh said...

Great to read about the whole thing and to see the photos on the blog! Congratulations again!

Joyce Hopewell said...

Many congratulations - so proud of you! Lovely pics - got the atmosphere OK!! xx

seev said...

Thanks for that great description of your run which sounded pretty grueling at times. Hey, you finished ahead of 3000 or so people, pretty good! Very nice pictures too.

Danielle said...

Congratulations. Great accomplishment.

Be well and enjoy the day

barbara said...

Hi Abby,
Congratulations ! You did it !
I enjoyed seeing the run on photo also.
You deserved the medal :)
I don't think that the ranking is important in a race; you finished it and that's already an achievement in itself.

See you soon,

Ariel said...

Congrats! Sounds like a satisfying finish.

Jackal said...

Good going! I ran my first 10K race in Glasgow about 7 years ago... so your post brought back those memories. I live in Edinburgh but don't ask me why I haven't run it yet... shame on me.

A wicked sense of achievement eh?

Well done you for doing it and for raising so much money.