First of all well done to Egle running the Manchester half marathon today. Raising money for a worthy cause, keeping active (earning that coffee and cake!) and demonstrating the show must go on despite recent events. The amount of steps you and other colleagues have put in for our Virgin Pulse/GCC team, “The Red Hot Chilli Steppers” i am sure we should be doing reasonably well in the leaderboard.
As the team captain of the Red Hot Chilli Steppers i thought i was not holding my own.I am not keen on big events, running on road etc…. I’ve done all that years ago. Fell running is my passion. What is fell running? Running in hills and mountains with no tarmac, little if any path at all, up and down steep hills in all weathers. Distances of fell races vary from a couple of miles to mountain marathons like the OMM or LAMM which take a few days. I have entered the OMM this year.
James Thorn fell race is only five miles in distance starting and finishing at a local pub. Two and half miles up a hill then two a half miles back down. Why bother? Well the characters who turn up to run, the experience of running up and down hard terrain, the low key approach to organisation of the race, the camaraderie, inexpensive cost and enter on the day option appeals to some. Not as many as organised road races obviously. Have a look at the FRA (Fell runners association) website for further details. A portion of the history of fell running can be traced back to farmers young and not so young from a valley, congregating to run an unmarked course in the hills for the pleasure of enjoying the outdoors, exercise and meeting socially.
Although i spend alot of my spare time in the hills i have not run a fell race in five years. I like training in the hills and the outdoor environment, flora and fauna especially, but i lost the passion for racing/competing a few years ago. It came back this morning when i ran in the local James Thorn fell race. I finished just outside the top twenty but i got plenty of steps in, not as many as Egle and the rest of the Red hot chilli steppers team i am sure, but good fun none the less. The passion for racing in the mountains took a big step today.
Well done to Caity, first lady home today and Chris for beating me home. It was nice to see faces from Glossopdale harriers happy and strong. Hats off to Des and his volunteers for spending the time to organise and support the race.