Monday, 21 March 2016

Coniston 14 - Race Report

When I signed up with my running club last year, I heard a lot about the Coniston 14 race, and after running it this weekend, I can certainly see why it was so raved about!

This race has it all: amazing scenery around Coniston Water in the Lake district; hills, hills and more hills; great atmosphere and support and did I mention the hills? Also, with a 14 mile distance to cover, you're pretty likely to get a distance PB!

Coniston 14

Starting in Coniston the race starts and finishes at a school and takes in the entire of Coniston water giving you a pretty awesome view as you run. We drove up in the morning, and after a quick warm up we were off on our way and immediately climbing the first of many hills. There were lots of ups, but with those came a lot of downs too which I had loads of fun on! It had a great atmosphere and there were little pockets of support throughout the race. The climbs were certainly tough, especially at the 11 mile mark, and I was really pleased we'd been doing some hill running during our marathon training as this definitely put me in good stead. I managed to run them all and even managed faster than 7 minute miles at one point. Oops! I was meant to be taking it steady, but I quickly got caught up in race mode and managed to keep pushing through.

I was really glad when a fellow runner pointed out the amazing view to me at around 7 miles as I'd been looking down until then. What a mistake!

The final mile is a quick one too as you run back into Coniston to lots more support and cheering. There was a lot of pushing to be done in this final leg, especially when a lady over took me from nowhere! I kept going and managed to overtake her again to finish in 1.45.06 - which has really boosted my confidence for the marathon in three weeks time. Maybe my goal of 3.30 might be achievable after all!

Its a tough course, but the hilly route makes it interesting. Ill be back next year for sure!

It was a successful run for the club as we came 1st Men's team, and 2nd ladies team. We were so shocked, we didn't quite believe it was true and almost missed our prize giving on stage! We also had two individually placed men so a good day for the Harriers all round! We celebrated with a LOT of beer and a LOT of food.
Successful Harriers
The worst bit of the race was definitely the fact that after I was finished, I had another 6 miles of training to do. Phew - these were TOUGH! But I'm glad I got them done as that's it for the long runs for the marathon. It's time to taper. Hurrah.

Next up - Cardiff Half marathon. Fingers crossed it's as much fun as this weekend.

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