Liverpool Hope University 6 hour race March 8th 2019

Less than 20 runners assembled at the start of this year’s Liverpool Hope University 6 hour race. It was a cold and wet day. The University architecture was impressive. I was focused on my race plan. I was soon being lapped by just about everyone; some were lapping me more than once for every lap I completed! An important point here is that I stuck to my plan (target - not more than 30 miles) and wasn’t influenced at all by the speed of the other runners. I set out aiming to complete 15 miles within 3 hours and I managed this with several minutes to spare. I was still feeling good so decided to maintain the pace through 20 miles. At this point my pre-race plan kicked in and I decided to jog walk for the final 2 hours. At this point I immediately realised that walking was a problem. My left knee was instantly sore as I dropped to walking pace and I could sense a clunking feeling that was aggravating the soreness. Returning to a gentle run pace instantly eased the soreness and I was once again comfortable. But psychologically I was concerned for the well being of the left leg. I thought it was probably due to impact and that if I walked for a while the clunking sensation would diminish and the soreness lessen. This is actually what happened, so I felt relieved but slowing down to a walk relaxed the body which now felt really heavy. I wasn’t able to walk quickly because of the soreness so I never regained the momentum of earlier in the race. During the final two laps, with very relaxed muscles, I was feeling so heavy that the feet were in danger of being injured due to the excessive load. It was an extremely rare decision but I decided to pull out with about half an hour to go having reached the marathon distance. The following day my left knee was quite swollen so I think pulling out after five and a half hours was a wise decision.

Liverpool Hope University 6 hour race: