Edmund Carr Charity Races

Entering races

In the couple of years that I have been running I haven’t really ran in many races. I’m not sure why really, probably because I hadn’t thought about it, perhaps because I hadn’t felt strong enough or confident enough to enter a race or complete one.

Maybe it’s because I didn’t want people to laugh at me, or mock me for running. This may stem from school sports day at senior school. I never took an interest in running or anything other than football or rounders really, so when sports day rolled around and I was asked to step up to the 400m as someone from our ‘house’ had dropped out I was a bit reluctant to do it. But had no choice really.

I started off ok, ran hell for leather for the first 200m, got tired immediately after, and slowed right down. I can recall people shouting at me to run faster, I had been coming second, I dropped to third, then fourth, then last. Where I stayed. My legs were jelly. I was out of breath and the finish line never seemed to get any nearer. I wanted the ground to swallow me up. My so called mates all took the piss out of me. I bloody hated running.

I remember being quite apprehensive at my first race, the Saucony 10K last September, I wish I had run more since then.

Planning ahead

I intend to enter into more races, I think it will help to motivate me a little more, so I have put my name down for a couple of races over the next few months.

I have entered the Amsterdam Marathon in October – apparently there are some wonderful sights during the race and the party afterwards is far from a sombre affair!!

Before that I have the Southend Half Marathon in June. A reasonably easy half marathon course by all accounts, happy to be running it with two great mates, Crispy and Rob Cameron.

This weekend though I have entered the Edmund Carr Charity Races. Its fairly local, in Great Baddow village, and is a 10 mile hill filled event. To be honest I am quite nervous. Lots of questions and thoughts running through my head like; have I trained enough? How am I going to run without my music? What if I fail to finish? What if I get injured? I guess they are normal questions to be asking and everyone is maybe just a bit nervous.

God knows what I will be like for the half marathon, let alone the full marathon!

I’ll let you know how I get on.

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Fun runs

What is a fun run?

What is a fun run? Well a fun run for me is a run / race that you can enter without actually having to be good at running or actually having to run at all. Which is handy!

Many people of all ages enter them and each person has their own reason for entering the race. Each person is probably running or walking to raise money for a charity for or on behalf of a loved one, and it’s all done with fun in mind.

The Farleighs Hospice Santa Fun-run

In December I took part in the Farleighs Hospice Santa fun run. I cost me a tenner to enter and I thought it would be a nice way to raise a little bit of money for a great charity, give me something to keep getting up in the freezing cold mornings to train for, plus the opportunity to dress up as Father Christmas – always a bonus!

It was a two and a half mile run, which wasn’t a big deal, it was nice to be involved in a fantastic event and helping to raise some money too.

The day of the run

On the day I had my little fan club at the ready; consisting of my mum, my wife and 2 little boys. The look on their little faces (I am referring to the boys faces, not so much my mum’s or wife’s faces) when they saw Father Christmas in the front room was priceless, imagine their faces when they saw 300 Father Christmas’ limbering up for a run!!

It was lovely to have them all with me waving me off from the starting line, and to cheer me across the finish line and give me a big hug…quite emotional actually.

Thankfully the weather was freezing cold, there was a blustery wind and rain in the air, which I don’t mind at all.

I prefer it to be cold rather than sweltering hot, not that it was going to be much over 10 degrees at the beginning of December!!

The fun run (race)

Each and every Father Christmas had been put through a gruelling 15 minute warm up by an evil fitness instructor (she wasn’t evil really, just had everyone working hard to warm up, all in good spirits though), so then we all headed to the start line.

I was midway back, surrounded by people of all ages and sizes and remembering what my wife had told me “it’s a fun run, the emphasis is on FUN” “I’ll take it easy then” I thought.

Anyway, the siren went, off went Rudolf on his mountain bike (we all had to follow him, and were not allowed to overtake him – fat chance of that), everyone urged forward, and I followed the crowd, until we got around the first bend that is, and wifey couldn’t see me.

I steamed nearer the front and pretty much kept overtaking people, my pain in the arse competitive streak had kicked in and I wanted to run – fast. In my head I wanted to finish in top ten, and judging by my position I may just do that, I had a couple of plodders to get past and I had done it.

I kept hearing wifey’s voice in my head, I had the angel on one shoulder (wifey) and a demon on the other shoulder (competitive me).

The thing was I wasn’t the only one doing it competitively, oh no. I reckon everyone in the top 15 or so ran that fun run with the intent in finishing as quick as possible. And I reckon most of them belong to a running club. The 14 year old lad who won certainly did, he was about 5 minutes ahead of everyone else, he certainly made Rudolf work for his money!

I did finish in top ten, I was 8th, and I think I did it under 20 minutes. Hardly broke a sweat (yeah right).

Can’t wait until next year!