Well, after a very busy week at work (and another one coming up) I was really looking forward to getting out on the South Downs for my long run yesterday.
I was a bit pushed for time, trying to fit it in between working and family coming over but I had worked out that I had enough time for about 10 miles. The beauty of running over the Downs is that there are so many different routes that you can take depending on quite how many hills you would like to run up and how far you would like to run 🙂
I haven’t actually been up on the Downs for a few weeks, the sheer amount of mud in some sections has put me off a bit, when it gets to the point that you can’t run large sections of it then maybe it is time to change the route a bit….
Anyway I set off in the wonderful sunshine we had with plenty of water because I know I get thirsty…
Not far in to my run I came across a mountain biker who had come off his bike. He had been over a low jump, got it wrong and landed on his face. It was obvious he needed an ambulance. Luckily he had been wearing a helmet, it was badly smashed but I hate to think what would have happened if it hadn’t been wearing it, he was in a lot of pain and wasn’t a pretty sight.
I had my mobile with me so I was able to phone for an ambulance and direct the paramedics to where we were. Luckily I know the area very well and knew where we were.
This brings me to my main point for this post. I am always amazed by the number of lost people I find on the South Downs who don’t have maps or phones etc with them. To me this is irresponsible, you never know who or what you may find, and if you get lost you could end up walking for hours before finding a road or people to direct you.
Maybe it was my upbringing, and years spent in the Girl Guides, Air Cadets and then the TA but you should go out prepared. I don’t mean taking a full emergency first aid kit with you but adequate and suitable clothing ( white ugg boots don’t look so good after a walk over the downs in winter), a map or navigation device so you know where you are (not just a sketch on the back of a bit of paper that covers Eastbourne to Winchester on half an A4 sheet). Depending on how far you are going/how long you plan to be out then water is a good idea, and in our modern society when everyone has their mobiles with them all day don’t leave it at home when you go out in to the country, by all means turn it off so you can enjoy the peace and quiet but one day you may be very grateful that you have it with you..
Anyway, instead of 10 miles I ran 7 but enjoyed it, not the fastest I have ever run but it was beautiful up there 🙂
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