Sunday, 5 February 2012


Strange day yesterday.
I didn't have clothes on all day.... Oooh err. Well. Not "proper" clothes.
We were of to Kilmarnock for the Scottish Masters XC so it was a case of wake up and have a bit of a relaxing breakfast, shower, change into running gear, pack extra running gear into a bag to get changed into after the race...then head off.
We reckoned on a 2 1/2 hour journey through there and wanted to have time for Anne to get her number etc. before her race at 1:30, so we picked Richard up at 10:00 and headed "west" (my favourite direction).
Now. the weather pundits on the telly had been warning us about snow and ice and generally cold related Armageddon. What they really meant was that soft southern shandy drinkers were going to get a bit of snow, while the rest of us got ...well, we got pretty much what you would expect for the first weekend in February to be honest. RAIN! Loads and loads of feckin' rain.
So why - why in the name of all that's good - did I choose to believe the telly pundits? "Ooh, it's cold now, it'll be cold when we get there, the ground will be firm - I know! I'll only take my trail shoes"!! Yes - that's right, it's because I'm an arse hole!!
Snow? Ice? Frost?? None whatsoever. Wind? Rain? MUD?? Oh yes. Loads of that.
After an initial run through of most of the course we still thought it might be firm underfoot and we would get away with trail shoes.
However. This didn't factor into account what happens when you get lashings of rain, mud and then 500 or so pairs of shoes running over the same route five times!! (women went round twice - men three times).
It wasn't the most inspiring course I've done but there were a few bits that were narrow and contained very tight bends. Add to this mix ankle deep mud and you have the makings of a difficult route! Especially if you didn't have Spikes, Walshes or Inov8s etc!!
I quite like really cold dry weather. I don't like cold, wet and windy.
By the time we had "warmed up" and watched a bit of the ladies race, then stripped down to the bare essentials for racing I was already soaked to the skin and freezing. I wasn't the only one and a few runners were getting a bit impatient and telling the starter just to "get on with it".
The best I can say about my XC running for 2011/12 is it's been "average" and this run was no different at all.
It would be easy to blame the weather, the shoes etc. But my heart just wasn't in it. XC just doesn't "do it for me" I'm afraid.
Anyway. I did it all the same.
It was that cold and unpleasant that once Richard, George and "Ian" had finished we just headed off - no hanging about to chat in these conditions (we all finished pretty much beside each other with only about 12 places separating all 4 of us).
George and "Ian" had their car parked pretty close to the start area so me and Richard headed along the road to the local school that was being used for changing.
It was there, while looking forward to getting into some nice dry gear that I realised that the bag I had taken along isn't water proof and the tree I had left it under didn't exactly offer much protection either. The stuff inside was soaking!
So. Instead of nice clean dry running gear to put on for the journey home, I had horrible, wet, though still "clean" running gear to change into!
With the fan heater going full blast in the car I was almost dry by the time we got home at the back of five!!

So. By the time we got in it was almost dark. I just had a quick shower...and, given that all I had planned for the evening was eating a bowl of chili pasta the size of a washing up basin and watching another episode of The Walking Dead I decided to just loaf about in my house-coat.

So. That's that. XC, for me, is over this year! Good. I can concentrate on some distance runs now.
Went out this morning for about 17. Pretty slow (icy in a few places) but I did enjoy it.

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