Seaside 5k run , the big puddle and the granny !

6 10 2008

Neck and neck with a Birkenhead AC athlete

Neck and neck with a Birkenhead AC athlete

Today was the big start and a chance to get some km’s under my belt with the Seaside run 5k event starting in Leasowe. This is a regular monthly event (March to October) and I had started my new running “career” with the previous race in September. I was surrounded by a mixed field of athletes ranging from excellent club runners to novices. I would say my standard falls somewhere in between.

I was finely tuned for the event and had spent an hour studying the map of the course and laying down my race plan. I was determined to beat my previous best time of 24:35 for this race.
I had memorised times for landmarks…the top car park 6.5 mins, Leasowe Castle Hotel 10 mins, the left dogleg 15 mins, above Green Lane 17 mins and the final car park 21 mins. I was prepared for anything.

It was a bit nippy at the start to say the least with quite a bracing wind to deal with but I stormed down the road past the lighthouse and climbed up to the prom. My God..cold. There was a steady wind that just cut into you. I battled on car park under 6 mins…oh dear too fast, legs heavy, Leasowe Castle Hotel 10 mins spot on …yes ! Left dogleg 15 mins …spot on. I was going to do it … I avoided children , dogs the odd cyclist …nothing could stop me now.

I came around a corner with less than 1 mile to go .. up ahead was a really massive puddle on a narrower part of the path. No problem. THEN TO MY HORROR I spotted her.. a pensioner picking her way slowly around the puddle. A silent scream rose in my mind. NOOOO ! …she was in the way. There was no way I could go through the middle of the pool we would both be drenched. As I approached I thought “keep calm , keep calm” I will just go around the other side there is bound to be a dry strip… I got closer. NOOOOO ! There was only one dry path and the pensioner in the dark coat was gingerly walking slowly down it.

This puddle must have been a good 10-15 feet long it was going to take time. My mind raced. I was still on for a Robert record .. I nearly shouted at her “GET OUT OF MY WAY !!!” No I just couldn’t …she could be my mother. I heard the breath of runners gaining behind me. Should I push her out of the way or lift her ?.. No ! It was too late. I found myself following her jiggling like a toddler bursting for a wee. It seemed to take an eternity and then I was free on the other side of the pool and trying to find my rhythm again.

Next target time over 18 mins. I was a minute behind. I had been caught by an athlete behind me but I think he felt slightly sorry for me after the puddle incident and did not overtake me. We finished the race together …and the time of 24:27 by my watch..unconfirmed.. but I had done it. A new Robert record with a stiff cold wind in my face and a granny to negotiate. If only she knew …




2 responses

10 10 2008

I always thought running to be rather monotonous and slightly boring! What excitement on this one! I admire your patience and stamina and congratulations for having obtained your target time. R.D.

10 10 2008

You should have slam-dunked the granny!

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