Last weekend I ran the Redbull Steeplechase for the second year in a row. The hospitality of Castleton and the production put on by Mother Nature (& Redbull) were just as good if not better than last year.
This year a few friends came up to run the race too so I was lucky to hang out with Steph, Polly, Sarah, Claire, and Carys (came up to support her friends running) before, during, and after the race. The pubs on Saturday and Sunday nights were filled with friendly runners and we met loads of nice people willing to run the least efficient route from church to church.
We arrived on Saturday morning and headed straight outside for all the fresh air possible. A quick walk up Cave Dale to “dirty up” some very bright new shoes and take in some of the special views of the Peak District. We even saw some famous Yorkshire stone walls made so famous by the ITV coverage of the TdF this year.
We obviously worked up an appetite in the fresh *cold* air so went straight for a cream tea to warm up. Alex and I stuck to a sensible scone each, but I heard Carys found a place that gave you a basket of scones!
Our sensible scone was followed by a proper pub dinner.
Up at 8am on race day for our B&B breakfast at 8:30 (sensible cereal & toast instead of the full English) and then a quick walk to the start for the 9:30 gun (literally it was a gun). Boys got a 5 minute head start on the girls but with our mountain goat legs we soon caught up.
I was taking the whole event really relaxed and easy and it really helped knowing what was coming from last year. Sarah on the other hand, let’s just say it was fun to hear her opinions of the hills. The climbs were tough and the descents even harder but I really enjoyed the whole 8 miles, even taking an all important selfie on the last big climb of the first steeple.
I finished 86th woman and thus was the first woman to not keep running towards the second steeple in Hope, 4 miles away. I had no idea I was actually so close to making it which makes me feel pretty good about my relaxed running pace. Alex and I met up at Bamford and joined the smelly runner’s bus back to Castleton for the long awaited bbq.
Finding a prime spot at the bbq we spent the afternoon on beanbags drinking beer and eating double cheeseburgers (no single patty option, my kinda bbq) and having the most amazing honeycomb brownie treats.
I forgot how differently shoes fit when you’re fell running vs. trail or road running. My tried & trusted Brooks Cascadias did a number on my feet with all the steep terrain. Lesson learned and I’ve currently got my feet wrapped in bubble wrap healing up for the Dublin marathon in errr… 18 days.