There’s tough trail races, and then there’s the toughest of Cancer Research’s Tough10 – the Box Hill 10k.
It becomes even tougher when you do it with a hangover. Trust me on that.
As part of my ambassadorship with CRUK, I was given race entry and was able to recruit a couple of friends to join me with some free bibs (sadly some people dropped out a few days/night before – story of my life!). Luckily Corey and Fleur were both up for a fun run, so we decided to start together while they laughed at how many clothes I was planning to wear (I also borrowed Corey’s hand band and gloves).
We took off at a gentle jog, and I remember thinking how nice it felt, and how maybe this wouldn’t be so tough after all.
Then about 1Km in we hit this…
And pretty much the entire race were reduced to a walk. It was quite amusing as we all chatted amongst ourselves, asking whose idea this was.
The views at least were well worth it, it was a beautifully clear day and you could see for miles. It was also the perfect excuse to stop for a breather! I was testing out a new watch, but my pace kept slowing down so much to walk up the hills, that it kept auto-pausing!
There weren’t a lot of spectators, but there were plenty of very friendly volunteers dotted along the course which more than made up for it.
I loved running through the woods, it was so pretty, although I definitely didn’t feel so fresh. I wish I’d brought some water with me or at least eaten a little more for some sugar/energy on the run. When will I learn that I cannot handle my drinks anymore?
It was undulating for a bit, with little rolling hills within the woods, until we came across this little monster. I swear they just added this in to torture us!
We bumped into Leanne from Run Mummy Run and her friend at this point and ran with them for a little bit. There was another two huge hills to tackle after this one, one of which I walked backwards up, the other I went forwards…slowly.
We started to find the terrain rather hilarious, laughing and complaining with those around us as the hills kept going and going. This was tough, and probably my slowest 10K ever, and yet I couldn’t stop smiling (even with the hangover).
And then we started going downhill… we had to tackle those 270+ steps on the way back down. We were nearly as slow on the way down because it was very slippery.
Totally earned that medal… and the Starbucks I stopped for on the way home.
I can’t wait to do some more trail runs next year, and probably a couple of the Tough 10 series – although maybe I’ll try to lay off the gins the night before!