Why is it I’m always getting talked into things? My good friend Kim from Egdon Heath presented me with a list of all the events she was determined to run and right up at the top of the list was the Gold Hill 10k. Yes you know Gold Hill. The one from the Hovis ad. “He were a reet good baker were ower dad”. Apparently directed by Ridley Scott. And b$%%^y steep too.
Photograph courtesy of Chris Cussen
So Sunday October 12th 2014 saw me setting off with Kim, Jim (Mr Kim) and family ooop north to the town of Shaftesbury for the Gillingham Trotters’ 10k event. My work colleague Chris is a member of the Trotters and had already regaled me with tales (and photos) showing just how b$%%^y steep it was! We arrived at the school where the run was based, checked in, and mentally prepared. As 11:00 AM approached we moved outside to be greeted by:
Richard, president of the Egdon Heath Harriers. Anywhere within 50 miles of base is regarded as cycling distance for Richard, in his mid 60s. But he did admit on this occasion to having misjudged it slightly, having not yet even registered! Anyway, Kim and myself headed out and we even took it upon ourselves to attempt a proper warm-up around the sports field. But we wondered why everyone else seemed to be warming up in a different direction, and suddenly realised they were actually gathering for the start. A quick change of course and we made it on-time, which is more than could be said for Richard.
Off we went, and before we knew it were ascending the cobbles of Gold Hill. Remember thinking “that really wasn’t too bad” on reaching the top – short and
sweet steep. Yes – that was the easy bit. As the run progressed it became clear that the locals probably chose to build Gold Hill where they did because it was one of the flatter pieces of land in the area. This was definitely my hilliest run to date.
After a couple of miles we were overtaken by Richard, still in a state of semi-undress. Soon after, the hills started taking a toll on Kim, and she dropped back. I was able to push on, but towards the end I too had to bite the bullet and walk on a couple of the long uphill sections. But I guess it is all character building, and I never forget the advice “the hills are your friends” – yeah – sure they’re doing me good in the grander scheme of things.
For the record, I was placed 147 out of 212, home in 57.31, and Kim recovered really well and was placed 165, in 1:00:34 (having given us a good start, Richard was around in 53:03). Then headed off for a really nice Sunday lunch in Shaftesbury. A run I was very pleased to have under my belt. Incidentally, I think I know why it is I’m always getting talked into things.