Orienteering race 3:55:02  22.57 km (10:25 / km) +1400m 7:57 / km
shoes: X-Talon 212 2017
Lake District Mountain Trial Medium 2nd +40mins!
A race I've wanted to do for years and not been able to do or not wanted to travel up for. Went I found out I could head up, was unsure of my fitness levels and whether I could get round or wanted to do it. Last minute saw Jane was heading up so could get a lift one way and Matt was still keen for a fell running weekend. Didn't really have any time to train for this and wanted to get out in the days before the race.
Felt a bit nervous on the morning, unsure of how it would go and the forecast was for deteriorating conditions. Plan was for some food every 45 mins or so which didn't quite work out. Saw Matt off and then got rid of a bit of kit from my bag. Could see a lot of people going up the Band which seemed like the best option for 1. Settled into the climb, trying to check out the course and make plans but also keep steadily climbing. Hard to know how to pace it, didn't want to go too fast and be far slower ascending later. Rough contour round the back of Bowfell but picked a few people off. Took it steady ish, it was a bit rocky and slippy in places. The slope the control was bigger than expected. Original plan was to contour higher up the valley and drop into the control but ended up descending and climbing into it.
Then some downhill controls, could've been more tricky in poor visibility. Didn't always get the best line and a bit slow in bracken or in rocky sections. Tightened my shoes a couple of times as they got wet and felt loose when descending. Navigation was good through this section. Would like to be reading the map more while running and have a better appreciation of distance and size.
Long leg route choice, thought I'd cut across to the end of hardknott to the pass and then diagonally uphill. Think it would've been better to do a bit more on the path and go higher like Zoe did. Didn't see anyone for the first half of the route, a bit marshy in places and the drop to the river was steep, brackeny and then rocky river crossing. Saw everyone else heading up the path, then diagonally up. Fell into rhythm with two other guys, I lead most of the line up and we were moving okay. Legs a bit tired. At the top, the guy who had gone into the front, hesitated but I had a plan so lead it down. A small miss on the control, overshooting slightly but then spotted the radio control mast. Started to feel some cramp, especially in my right groin (quite painful!) Alright contouring round Pike o Blisco, slightly lower than planned. A bit hesitant through here and to the river crossing control, but did hit it okay.
Steep descent to the bridge, the grass was a bit damp and I was slipping quite a bit. Went down a couple of times (nothing major but a little bruised), tried to just keep descending. Could feel the cramp building and the long run in was on the edge of cramping up the whole way. Think I ate 1 nakd bar, 1 cereal bar, 1 Clif bar and some jelly babies, probably should've had more. Drinking from streams as I went.
Finished 2nd overall and 1st male. Very happy with the result and in general just getting round. Didn't know if I could do it and have struggled to walk up stairs at times this summer (probably have Lyme's disease again, seeing the GP Thurs). Satisfying to be fit enough to get round and competent enough to do it. Would like to do some more events like this and one day do the Classic.