Blue Runnings

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

Run 2 Remember Sunderland 2016

on 1 November 2016

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Run 2 Remember has rolled around again raising money for 4 major military personnel supporting charities. This was high on J’s list of favourite runs last year so it had to make the calendar this year – and they had a raffle and tombola! Who doesn’t love a race where you can win things without even running?

This is the second year we’ve run this one, and it’s setting a trend for sunshine, even if there was a bit of a shower on the way there. 🙂 We also had another friendly face we recognised (we didn’t know anyone except Hippie the photographer and his family last year) in the appearance of R at the start line! J was obviously getting into the zone right from the gathering at the starting banner, and as we started off she shot off looking for ‘space’ and I don’t think actually heard me when I attempted to start a conversation with her as we set off. Ironically after a few hundred yards when I’d just decided to set my own steady pace and leave her to it, I actually had all the space around me, while J 50 yards in front was still in a pack of people. There was the most enormous buzzard overhead on the starting half-mile and J (usually a birdwatcher) was completely oblivious to it.

R caught me up as we reached the bottom of the hill and prepared to set out along the field to the lake, and given how close behind me he finished (we’ll come to that later!) presumably stayed not far behind me for the rest of the race though I was blissfully unaware of this and pootling along in my own little world. I saw The Buzzard, many gulls, swans, ducks and heard something making an odd noise at the bottom end of the lake, though I didn’t see the owner of the little voice…

J was getting an increasing lead by this point – I was waving at her from the other side of the lake as she started her second lap ahead of me – and the irony of doing the same thing the year before when I was finishing my second lap and she was starting hers was not lost upon me! I caught a glimpse of a pink-sided ninja vest as I joined the straight along the field and she was reaching the end of it, and that was it until the finishing straight at the end of the hill! Last year, it was me that was ahead and I must confess to sneaking a walk in on the long hill back up to the finish line, while J (very indignant when she found this out) had kept a steady pace up and managed to make it up the whole thing. I don’t think I’m capable of ever being quite as stubborn as J when it comes to much, but I did decide to myself that I was going to get into the J-zone and repeat her steady all-the-way-round approach of last year and make it up the hill, still pootling along.

My intention was to continue pootling to the finish line but a familiar name was called out by the ninjas at the end as I was a few hundred yards from the finishing line. I read a book called Confessions of an Unlikely Runner by Dana Ayers. In it, she talks of a relay race where runners in the team would log their ‘kills’ – the number of runners they had managed to pass, which was tallied against the number of people who passed them. One chap, having a much higher score of being passed than doing the passing, gives up on this aspect and dubs himself a pacifist. I have a sneaking suspicion this is how J gets round pretty much all her races – she picks a person in front, makes a ‘kill’ and focuses on the next one – and god help anyone who she’s got her eye on and can’t quite catch up at the finish line! If looks could kill! 😛

I suspect R had a similar mindset in mind going by the laughter that followed when I glanced round, saw him right on my left shoulder, and set off for an unintended sprint finish for the last 200 yards, which I promise I was intending to just continue pootling along for. I’m sorry R – but if I’ve got anything left in the tank at all, I’m not being anyone’s ‘kill’ that close to the finish line!

It was another enjoyable 5k – I’m really pleased to have beaten my 5k time from the day before at Riverside parkrun by 20 seconds – particularly as Riverside is about as flat as you can get and Silkworth has a lovely big hill at the end to get up however you can, but J absolutely floored it – 4 mins faster than I was and a new 5k pb: under 30 mins for the second time ever and the first time was downhill assisted. I’m absolutely delighted for her, and totally pretending I’m not also rather jealous! A summer of hard work definitely paying off. I have some work to do 😛

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We headed straight over to the burger van (we totally earned that) and then back to the event tent to find J had won a pampering set in the raffle, and we hit the tombola again after the race (less tickets in the bag to pick from!) and came away with a very stylish nose and ear hair trimmer, some old spice and lots of sweets between us! It’s all for a good cause 😉 I’d show you a photo of the treats and the goody bag content – it was excellent as last year – but the truth is I’ve already eaten most of them so you’ll have to make do with a photo of the medal and technical t-shirt instead 🙂 J did at least get some bling for this one! V. important bling to Ms J and she’s not had much this year!

2016

You can download the GPX data for this course from my Dropbox account by following the link below:

GPX data on Dropbox

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