Blue Runnings

Race Reviews, GPX files and more from North-East England

In All Life Some Raspberries Must Be Scoffed

on 16 August 2015

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There’s a stretch of the C2C (Sea to Sea/Coast to Coast) cycle way which runs from Cumbria to Tyneside and passes through the Consett environs, and I headed out this morning for a there and back again along a stretch of it known as the Waskerley Way – a railway path similar to the Derwent Walk I sometimes follow. Looking it up now on a very helpful link from the Durham Council website, I can see I ran it the ‘wrong’ way. Some of the Bounders sometimes get dropped off at Park Head and run back to Consett – a 10 mile stretch in a predominantly downhill direction. Being on my own this morning, I dropped the car off in Consett and ran up to just before Waskerley picnic area before turning round and heading back again.

waskerley way

No wonder if felt easier heading back to the car! At least I seem to have gotten most of the uphills out the way while I still had some puff. I’ve only done a very short stretch of this path before, to not a huge amount further than across the viaduct on a Run England session, and then to be honest forgot it was there despite at the time thinking I would have to come back and explore further along. That particular stretch looked mostly flat and shaded, and like a good alternative to the Derwent Walk.

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My intention this morning was to see if I could hit 10 miles again – it’s been 2 months since I last hit this distance. I was expecting to find myself pootling along in the shade with not much to see for the duration of the run, but the Waskerley Way crosses much more open country than the Derwent Walk and I could pretend I was fell running as I crossed the heathland, while still being on a flat, level-ish, good quality footpath! I think it’s probably the furthest I’ve been from towns and villages on a run that wasn’t part of a race – and to be honest I think Kielder is the only one that’s felt as remote. The morning started off sunny but was kind enough to cloud over once I left the shaded avenues and return to sunny not long before I was back among the trees! The views were fantastic, I really felt I was out in the moors and wilderness 🙂

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I really concentrated on this one on keeping my pace DOWN. I didn’t set off at my usual rate but headed off at what I hoped was a mile-eating slow jog. I felt a lot better for it – no boiling head and over-heating, breathing fine and able to just keep putting one foot in front of the other and pootling along. Happy half marathon pace, just need a bit of extra stamina worked in now 🙂

Much of the route was the sort of terrain pictured above – but nearer the halfway point of both the route and my run, it got a bit scrubbier and I noticed raspberries growing along the sides! Fresh ripe red raspberries that haven’t seen a car exhaust in their life. I headed on past until I hit the 8km mark – but couldn’t resist pausing to grab a few on my way back past… I didn’t stop to fill my face long, a swarm of flies kept buzzing around my head when I wasn’t moving at a jog and that sharp kept me on my way! I actually bought some raspberries from Morrison’s when I’d finished my run, and they were nothing like as nice – gooey and tart rather than light and fresh like the wild ones.

I didn’t hit the 10 miles on this occasion, I passed a group of cyclists swapping an inner tube and then dropped down to a walk at the 9 miles mark and walked the last stretch back to the car as a cool down. Fortunately my knees didn’t feel like jelly for long after I’d dropped to a walk – they don’t when I’m jogging but I sometimes get a jelly joints sensation on a pace change when I’ve done a longer distance. If I can get P to drop me off I definately want to try running the full length from Park Head or Weathermill back to Consett – with the added bonus of it being mostly downhill, on paper at least – just to see the full length. Then another time, I’ll have to run up to Park Head 🙂 Maybe I’ll try that first and save the downhill as an easier distance run after the GNR!

I’m pleased I could just get up and go this morning. I allowed myself a leisurely get up having not really had one yesterday, but it was still a get up, get into running gear and get out the door – I didn’t really need to give myself a kick up the pants to do it, and was pretty confident on where I was going to turn round – I told myself it had to be an absolute minimum of 6km away, and preferably 7 or 8km, and as I still felt ok when I got just over 7km, I really had no excuse for not hitting 8km – and then I have to travel 8km at any speed to get back to the car 🙂

I’m feeling a bit better about running in the heat – I’ve broken the 10km barrier at last, and I seem to be fine as long as I don’t let my feet get carried away with pace. I also took my ipod for this one which I’ve not done for a while which helped keep me distracted as some stretches of the route didn’t have a huge number of features to focus on as waymarkers other than ‘the top of that hill’. There were a couple of gates and two roads to cross in each direction which broke my run up a bit, but all in all I enjoyed it 🙂

Campervan cash: Food – £4, Exercise – £4     Total: £8

16-8-15

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