I must admit I had been really looking forward to this race…
A couple of days before however I went down with a stinking cold so I had to weigh up the pros and cons of a very wet muddy run with my general health. Let’s just say we met in the middle and I switched from the 16km to the 8km on race day. At the end of the 8km I felt I would have been fine to carry on and do the second lap however today I’m back on the lemsip so maybe it’s best I didn’t….
I have been enjoying the muddy races because each one is so different. I’ve raced at Longmoor before so I knew the type of terrain ( wet, very muddy & very hilly with some sand thrown in for good measure 🙂 )
With this one I did put a bit more thought in to the preparation and I’m glad I did. On the day it was 2 degrees C and windy….. One of the water sections was up to my neck…. It is easy to underestimate wind chill especially when you are wet. After the first water section I couldn’t feel my feet for a bit but they did come back to life eventually !
As far as clothing went I wore the following :
2XU long compression tights with an old pair of Nike capris over the top
Mystic thermal rash vest (normally worn by surfers) with my mudstacle t-shirt
Inov-8 merino wool mud socks ( they were great !) and my Inov-8 X-Talon 212 trainers
Cheap pair of gloves
2 x buffs (one for my neck and one round my hair/ears)
The last brutal race I ran I found my quads got incredibly cold after a long water section so I wanted to avoid this happening again which is why I wore the two pairs of bottoms. The compression gear in some ways acts like a wetsuit trapping a very thin layer of water that warms up….. The water did feel cold the first time I went in but after that I didn’t really feel it and the thermal rash vest worked a treat at keeping me warm 🙂
I also had xtenex laces fitted to my trainers. These are elastic and you don’t really have to do them up or undo them, I just tuck the loose ends out of the way. These should allow an even pressure over your foot rather than tightening up in places… I was slightly worried about them keeping my trainers on my feet through the boggy sections but it wasn’t a problem and I didn’t feel as though I was going to lose a trainer at any point.
I would like to get some better gloves but the ones I had did the job and even when they were soaking I still had warmish hands (I still had feeling in my fingers)
Running this race in December has given me the confidence to go out and do more of them. With the right clothing the time of year and weather shouldn’t stop you and I’m now busy looking for the next one !
I should add that despite feeling awful I still managed to come 8th in my age/gender category and 171st overall 🙂