Up at the crack of whatever, breakfast and out. We stayed in the same place as Ali and David last night but they will be joining us later today as they have some things to attend to. Ali informed us that a runner named Anya would be waiting at the start to join Simon and Neil. We arrived at the start and there was no sign of a runner. We waited a short while but didn’t want to delay the run too much so the guys set off. Richard and I set off to find the first checkpoint.
Richard and I waited for the guys to come in to sight, we saw a single runner walking towards us and we’re a little baffled. More so that this runner was female too. She looked a little lost so I got out the car and approached her. It was Anya. She had missed us at the start and driven further on to try and find us. Not long after Anya found us the guys appeared around the corner. Simon wanted a quick stop so drinks were replenished and off they went. It has become a tradition at this point that the 10 mile point is where breakfast sandwiches are bought and consumed. Simon again did not want to stop at this point. Is knee was giving him some discomfort and he wanted to keep it warmed up. Stopping would risk it cooling down and hurting more.
Anya appeared to be enjoying her run and stayed on until the 15 mile point. The majority of today’s run had been along a highway. At mile 14 the route cut the corner of the highway and went down a very nice country road. It was on this road that we had another rest stop and we bid farewell to Anya however she stated that she would come out and run again before the run was over. Ali and David had joined us by now and Ali jumped in to take over from Anya running.
At mile 20 I joined in and Ali stayed with us. Off we ran to tackle the last leg. Simon’s knee had eased up somewhat and this made the conversation on the last run a lot of fun. We chatted about something and nothing and headed towards the finish line. It was uphill and as a joke I overtook everybody without warning and shouted “bye” over my shoulder. Ali and Simon picked up their pace too but I had the advantage of surprise on my side. As we approached the finish I realised I had run on ahead too soon. I was out of puff and couldn’t maintain that pace till the finish. It was a bit of silliness, which is one of the things that keep us all going.
Richard and David were waiting and after a quick rest and some food and drink we piled into the cars and went off to find our next new accommodation which was named “the cottage on the hill”. We were informed one of us would have to stay in the barn. This did not sound massively appealing to any of us, conjuring up images of hay bails and animals. On our arrival we were led to the barn and informed that an ice bath was prepared for Simon and Neil. The barn turned out to be a one person self contained apartment with bed, bath and kitchen all in one room. Thankfully the toilet was in its own space. It was lovely and Neil bagsied it.
Ice baths and off to the local high school so Simon could talk to the cross country team. The kids asked some really good questions. The kind adults wouldn’t dare to ask and that Simon had no issues answering. It was a fun session and the kids seemed to get a lot out of it. Simon and Neil were booked in for massages afterwards and while they were there Richard and I looked for somewhere to eat. We found a nice little bar restaurant that served good food. After our meal we headed back to our listing and within no time at all the first call of bed was made and we all followed suit.