On the trail again

rosemaryhill

Note it does not specify how far I ran, I could have done the 21km.

After a few weeks of feeling like hell, I’ve finally run another race, the Rosemary Hill 6km. I can’t say it was a beautiful Gauteng autumn day, but it was a good day for running- overcast and cool. The course was flat and I managed to run the whole way, despite my breathing starting to rasp just like it did during the last races I ran in March. I placed 64th woman, 10th female veteran, and 127th overall, still in the top ~50%, time: 45:38. And I managed to hit my goal of a sub-35min 5km. Hooray!

My previous two races, which I haven’t yet blogged about because I’ve been so under-the-weather (upper respiratory tract infection + sinusitis), were the 5km Merrell Autumn Night Run (12 March) and the 6km Merrell Autumn Run (14 March). Yes, I’ve been sick for that long.

mostly dead

Hallucinating about funny things. Like people taking my picture 1km from the finish of a hellish trail run.

The Night Run was a great experience; it felt amazing being out at night when the air is fresh. I wrote a short blog about the experience here. But I should have guessed by my time (38:36, 74th of 140) that something was up. By Saturday (which was a beautiful Gauteng autumn day, by the way), I was definitely feeling off. My breathing was a problem within the first 2kms, and as I headed up the incline into the 3rd km (you really need to check out the profile on Strava to believe it) I think I was starting to hallucinate because I saw all these tiny little people hiking up a giant rock ahead of me. These tiny people were going very, very slowly and as I looked at my watch I felt I had entered a time-warp where 1km had taken me 20 minutes. I actually stopped for water at the top; and seriously considered bailing. But these races were a birthday present from the Mindful Runner, I couldn’t give up. My arms felt like lead, I couldn’t feel my legs at all, and everything was hazy. (This could have actually been true because Johannesburg can get very hazy, and you could see the whole city from where I was running.) I finished 5.5kms in 1:08:15 (170th of 225) and was booked off sick for the next two days.

But I’m back up and running (and now cycling and circuit training), and I’m going to have lots more to blog about because I’ve entered two trail series events to keep me active this winter: The Rabbit Trail Series starting 10 May and the Spur Trail Series starting 14 June. I’m very excited to have some events to look forward to as winter is when my yoga practice tends to dwindle in the dark hours of the mornings.

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