Sunday, November 28, 2010

Changing Server.

I just wanted to let everyone know that my Blog may be down for a few days soon as I am changing servers.

Will be back as soon as I can.
Cheers Karen.

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Race Marshalls are bloody lost.

Now I'm notorious for getting lost in Trail Events. Turn me round twice and I'm done for. No idea where I've come from or where I'm going and our twisted sisters Running team is well and truly known for our geographical deficits and the challenges we face trying to stay on track.
But last Sunday I had the unusual experience of entering a 10 km. road race in which the race marshalls became somewhat lost and disorientated.
The event was the 10 km./ 5km. Glenelg Classic road race along the beach front road of one of South Australia's most popular tourist beaches. 

The Glenelg forshore.

All seemed well organised and the 10 km. runners myself included set off, followed 10 minutes later by the 5km. entrants. Both distances followed the same route for the first 2.5 km. at which point the 10 km. runners continued on and the 5 km. people turned and looped back on another road to the finish line.

The Running Track.

The 5 km. run continued without incident but for many of us doing the 10 km., things became very confused.
I set off with my race plan ; slow and steady for the first 5km. to warm up, ( because I usually do such long distances I can take quite a while to warm up. ) the next 4km. at a much faster pace and then sprint in the final 1 km.
For the front of the pack there were no problems, but after they had gone through the 5km. turnaround point there was a change in the race marshalls. I passed through the turnaround and then as planned increased my pace. At the 6km mark I followed the marshall's instructions along with many other runners and continued on without ever passing through any more drink stops or marshalled stations.
 Unbeknown to us the new marshall was unclear of the directions and sent us on ahead instead of turning left. The pack separated and I began to tire at my increased speed and think " this is a very long 10 km. " well that's what's printable anyway. I was also getting concerned because it seemed we were running further away from the finishing area. Many of us were also getting very hot and thirsty and wondered where the usual drink stations were. And the organised Police escorts on the roads were no where to be seen.
I don't run with a watch as I prefer to run at a pace my body feels comfortable with .I also don't like to stress out too much about heart rates and times. So with no watch I was beginning to loose track of how long I had been out there for. I paced up to 2 other runners and they were as confused and as tired as I was. One of them was wearing a distance monitor and said we had already done 12.5 km.
At this point we all decided to turn back and head towards the finishing area. Many of us passed through the finishing line from the wrong direction and we were met by a profusely apologetic Race Director who told us there had been a big problem.

I ended up running 13.5 km. with others doing various distances between 11 km. and 13 km. Most of us could see the funny side of the event and appreciate that the organisers are all volunteers and do their best. My only problem was that I was using this run as my virtual race for the Black Knight Army and so had to give Stefano an estimated 10 km. time .
The lead cyclist was also sent in the wrong direction so we had no hope. The chubby Hubby only ran the 5 km. event so he was okay. However with only running 5km. we have all renamed him "  half way Harry "

Trying to work out what went wrong.

Cathy and I at the finish.

Holding my certificate for Stefano to see.

Dear Friend Bette and Husband John who have taught me so much about the enjoyment of running.

Does anyone else have a similar tale to tell about a race that went wrong ?

Thanks for dropping by,
happy running.
 Cheers Karen.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Proud Mummy Moment.

 Oops, nearly 2 weeks since I last posted. Sometimes life just gets in the way.

Those of you who regularly visit my blog will know that the Chubby Hubby and I only have one child, Luke.
Luke ( AKA HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS ) is 27 but unfortunately for him was born with severe physical and intellectual disabilities.  The chubby Hubby and I looked after him entirely by ourselves for 26 years. However in January he moved into his own Bachelor pad with 3 other young people with similar disabilities . They have a wonderful team of care workers who provide 24 hour care.
Luke still lives with us 3 nights a week and comes home with MEGA attitude. He is not able to talk but we get the message loud and clear : he considers us his Staff !!!

 Luke has the biggest social network. He's always out and about and everyone seems to know him.

 Even a trip to the local Mall turns into a huge meet and greet for him.

These photos are from his recent visit to the Royal Adelaide Show and as usual he found amongst all the displays his fave ; GIRLS.

 Thanks for dropping by
 Cheers Karen.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Up Shit Creek and lost.

Okay, so there's lost, very lost and then there's up Shit Creek without a paddle lost.
And this just about sums up our monthly social trail run with SARRC. on Saturday.
The plan was to run the  27.6 km. track which joins the Lavendar Trail with the Kidman Trail and over Mt. Beevor. You know it's going to turn ugly when folk driving to the starting point get lost badly.

The Chubby Hubby and I did well and found the start very easily, this being our only moment of glory for the whole day.
My short lived confidence crashed and burned very quickly as we parked our car near the first gate to be passed through.

One lady arrived and managed to get her car bogged in the mud. After being pulled out by Chubby Hubby Mike with his 4WD., she decided that was enough for the day and went home. GOOD DECISION !!!
The weather was totally lame. Freezing cold, windy, continual rain with hail and storms predicted. Plus it had rained heavily overnight so all the trails were very muddy.
I know I bang on about the weather but here in South Australia we are known to be the driest state in the driest country in the world. We've just come out of 5 years of severe drought and so this rain business is a bit of a novelty for us.

A bright and sunny morning. NOT !!

Anywhose, about 30 trail runners set off with loosely  accurate maps and with absolutely no idea where we were or where we were going. Things turned  tricky quite early when all our maps disintegrated in the heavy rain.
Chubby Hubby, BIL. James and Moi started well and we covered the first 13.5 km. in just over an hour. Susi No Bum and her Chubby Hubby got lost finding the start so we began without them, assuming they would catch up with us.

BIL. James and the Chubby Hubby.

I provided some entertainment when climbing over a fence. I lost my footing, slipped and sat on an electric fence !!!  OUCH ! Now that's one way to get all fired up and run faster. But I think I prefer coffee.
All jokes aside, these electric fences are meant to deter cattle and not dumb blondes !
The electric  shock didn't hurt, just felt like a huge thump in the chest and I was thrown and dumped unceremoniously at the feet of Chubby Hubby and BIL.
Now I didn't expect red lights, sirens and all the bells and whistles, but some sympathy would have been nice. DH. was about as much use as dog balls on a canary and everyone else just laughed.

DH. and Moi climbing another fence. Carefully !

From 8 km. on we did not see another runner all day. Everyone went their own way and got totally lost. Susi No Bum and her Chubby Hubby  never caught up with us or found us. They became badly lost but were fortunate enough to find a road with a signpost. As they had no idea how or where to continue they phoned their daughter to come and rescue them. He He !!! Loosers.

Nice view but no idea where it is.

Meanwhile back in our group things were not good. We followed a few runners footprints in the mud, but when those prints disappeared into a dam we were stuffed. And if those runners are still in the dam well they're stuffed too.
These guys were of no help.


 At one stage we were thinking we might need to spend the night in these deserted homesteads. Again , no idea where they were.

When Mike and Sue finally got back to their car they phoned us to ask if we needed rescuing. Nice idea but at the time we were stuck in a paddock full of cows and not a track or road in sight. And we were totally clueless as to our whereabouts. 

I'm happy to tell that we finally limped back to home base having covered about 35 km. instead of the 27, and seemed to be part of only a few who actually made it back and covered the entire course.

Sue and Mike kindly waited until we got back safely.
Then the final hoot ; we got lost driving back home in the car.

Thanks for dropping by
Cheers Karen.