Christmas Cracker 16k

I’ve had an amazing triathlon season this year and so it was only fair that I had a difficult off-season. Not long after I recovered from my first cold I picked up a second one which was one of the worst I have had. It’s a cold, so that’s still not bad in the grand scheme of things, but still kept me from training for 10 days.

By the time the Grim Up North Christmas Cracker rolled around, I couldn’t wait to get running again. But I was also concerned that after two weeks of not doing much I wouldn’t perform too well. Sunday turned out to be surprisingly mild and I went leggings and a t-shirt for what I hoped to be a fast-paced affair. I managed a 10-minute warm-up and a breakfast of Red Bull and energy gel.

Nobody seemed keen to lead out so I set off from the front and led the race for the first 50 metres. Another athlete then came past me. Joel then overtook us both and I followed him through to take back second place. He accelerated away building about a 30-second lead over the first few kilometres and then the gap stabilised. I was running on the limit but decided to push hard to halfway and then ease up on the way back.

I was maybe closing the gap a little at the halfway point before Joel put the hammer down on the way back and re-opened the gap. I was running with a blister on my left foot but thankfully the pain in my chest was so overwhelming that my foot pain was very manageable in comparison. The gap established again and I crossed the line 30 seconds down and 3 minutes ahead of third place.


I was hoping to average somewhere between 4:20 and 4:22 per kilometre and I came in at 4:21. This was my first ever second place, besting the third place I picked up at the Hubble Bubble half marathon a month ago.

Since COVID, Grim Up North have been splitting the events over two separate races, one on the Saturday and one on the Sunday. If I had run on the Saturday, I would have been three minutes clear of the field and the winner from Saturday would have not made the podium in our race. But that’s the luck of the draw. All we can do is our best and know that the more times we do that, the luckier we will get.

Post-race care was good as usual: they had a BBQ on for this event a well as the usual sweets and drinks.



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This entry was posted on Tuesday, December 7th, 2021 at 11:00 am and is filed under Sport. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.