KNIGHTSWOOD TO LINLITHGOW (30.01.10)
With the glasgow to edinburgh race being my first ultra this year and only just over a month away i decided to run from my house to linlithgow train station which is mostly forth and clyde canal and grand union canal a total of 35.3miles.
My run started at 10.30am a later start than i had hoped, the weather was dry and a cold. For this run i had taken my old mini ipod to see if it would help to let the miles go faster, i hadnt used my ipod for years and once i had reached the stables the battery had ran out and i would need to carry it for 5 more hours.
Once i had reached kilsyth the canal seemed to become a deep freezer and i was starting to struggle to keep myself warm and the canal was like one large ice cube, which is ok in a drink but running beside is very cold indeed. The first land marker i was looking for was the Falkirk Wheel which is 24 miles from my house, for such a big land mark you dont see it until you turn a corner and this massive structure is in front of you. I stopped here and had a drink of my energy drink and had a look at my heel as it was becoming sore, on inspection a blister was revealed and was soon taped with zinc oxide tape and headed on through the falkirk tunnel which was shorter than i remembered.
Once through the falkirk tunnel i was now on the grand union canal which was once again frozen, but the path is a bit rocky here, which if it was the whw you would say is good running, but after 24/25miles on a canal it seems to catch you out. My next way marker was polmont which i had ran from last year to edinburgh - to check the course out. After a long wait i came to polmont prison and knew i was close to my last leg to linlithgow.
Polmont to Linlithgow my last part of my run and it promised to be the longest, i had ran over this part of the route twice before and the last time was with eileen scott who told me that the worst part of an ultra was the finish and this was true about this last 6 mile leg as it dragged and dragged and after a few false alarms i seen the sign post for the train and it was a very weary person who sat in linlithgow train station at about 3.15 pm.
Now to explain why i got a blister, i have become used to wearing new shoes and just break them in with a long run, so got caught out with my new saucony trail shoes and if you remeber i said the falkirk tunnel was shorter than i remembered and that was because there is 2 tunnels with the second being the wet, damp and bumpy calderglen tunnel.
This has been my third long run on canals and it is amazing how different to other runs this surface is, to date i have had three bruised big toes, had very sore swollen ankles and feet.Yet when running on the whw i dont seem to have it as bad even though the terrrain is alot worse.
Split times : 9.52/9.57/10.39/9.49/9.58/9.37/9.21/9.36/9.39/10.03/9.52/11.17/10.50/9.30/9.41/9.54/9.32/9.43/1042/10.01/10.26/9.48/10.44/16.09/10.29/15.53/10.13/10.30.10.03/9.54/13.29/11.01/11.34/10.14
Total distance 35.3miles in 6hrs 15min.