Yesterdays run was yet another lesson learnt in kit and the importance of getting the right kit.
The weather wasn’t terrible. It was cold, misty but the main issue was the wind, and it’s chill factor. 15 miles from Stanmer Park up to the Beacon, over the Dyke, out to Truleigh Hill and back to the Dyke. No problem. I had a few extra bits that I’d sourced to make my journey for comfortable and professional. Liquid and nutrition was all sorted, new Christmas present to myself some lovely Salomon Speedcross 3’s, and off I went.
The wind up on the ridge of the South Downs Way was absolutely brutal. It was an “Oh my God I cannot stop running whatever happens it’s so effing cold!” moment.
Beginning the run up the 211 metre nemesis of Newtimber Hill I saw another runner, who could only say as he trotted past me “The wind”….
10 miles in and despite having a very good base layer, the running jacket I was wearing had successfully managed to trap all the moisture from my body cooling my core temperature to what felt like not very much at all. It was highly unpleasant.
Only the day before I’d been speaking to a friend who was coming to grips with that fact she was going to have to fork out a couple of hundred quid for a proper trail running jacket. Not the sport fashion label gear you get on the high street, a taped seams, specific mountain marathon approved jacket. One that inflated into a zeppelin if you got into trouble and airlifted you off the trails to the nearest pub. Or at least it should do for £200!
If I’d had £200 on me at that moment and there happened to be a shop up on one of the hills, I’d have happily picked one up proclaiming it was the best thing to happen to me in my life, ever.
Massive running jacket kit failure lesson learnt. OMM Kamleika jacket on the wish list.
I’d also like to take this opportunity at moaning to anyone who will listen, about the fact there is not a lot of decent kit made for women who want to run trail/mountain marathons/ultras. Fine for the guys, loads of choice. But not for us. Please do something about that. I may send a tweet to a couple of brands that have a plethora on offer for the guys but not much as far as I can see for the lasses. And just because I’m female it does not mean I want to wear a pink jacket. Got that.
The salt tablets I was trying out worked well. The broken colon held up pretty well. It was probably in shock at how cold it was and so decided not to utter a whimper!
Last thing. Straps, tabs, buckles….why oh why do they make so many of them on a running pack? All I can see are bits flapping about in the wind and no matter how I shackle, tie, knot, tuck, get annoyed with, there’s always still something in my eye line flapping about. Maybe along with the very expensive mountain marathon specific running jacket come zeppelin, the straps are a part of the aircraft and are meant to flap about?
Next week 19 miles. Lets see what happens to me then!
The pic below is what I call the ‘Valley of Agonal Breathing’. It’s the Devils Dyke valley. There used to be a railway that took people up it! I tend to put it in at the end of my run to take my mind off the freezing cold state of my being, replacing it with a lactic acid vomit inducing burn in the legs instead.