After the run in the morning with Jackie, I got in my car and drove to Cambuslang anyway. Doubts were already in my head. 26 miles on a route I don’t know. My leg is sore, maybe I should just do 20 or 10?
I used the toilet at Bella and then again at the Morrisons at Cambuslang where I parked. I got my water pack and supplies together and started out running from the first check point of the Clyde Stride at Cambuslang.
I’d run through this part of the route before and realised after it that I took a right about a mile after the bridge which I shouldn’t have. I should have looked out for the Clyde Walkway sign and taken a left under the bridge. That was the plan today, see if I could follow the route some more.
At the start of the run, on tge flat tarmacked surface of the national cycle route 75 the back of my right calf was still in pain and I was seriously thinking, I’ll take it 5 miles at a time. If it’s still sore after 5 miles I’ll turn back and just do 10 miles (16 in total) today.
At the Clyde Walkway sign I took a left onto a grassy trail and immediately noticed the difference in the ground below me. A Challenging trail path that I wasn’t used to. My pace would need to slow whilst I negotiated over the bumps and troughs in the ground.
The route from there is pretty undulating, some rather steep hills up and down on uneven ground. I’m wondering if my road trainers will suffice or if I should think about trail shoes? Mmmm.
About 3 miles after the check point the route goes down towards a bridge, and just before the bridge some trees are over grown over the path. You can get under them, but my bag got caught in them which was a little annoying.
After about 4 miles the trails ended and I turned left onto a rather busy tiad. This was the first time j wasn’t really sure of where I was and if I was following the right route. I had a map handy and it looked like I was, but I couldn’t be sure.
Now running on a busy A road, I ran facing the traffic and most cars gave me room. I ran under a bridge and over another bridge. The bridge I ran over wasn’t too wide and I had to more or less stop to give way to a van which wasn’t budging to give me any room. I’ve realised I probably should have turned right at this junction instead of left and then found a path to cross the river at the ‘green bridge’. (About 3.2 and 5 miles in on the route). (Don’t follow my garmin route as they’re wrong as I didn’t follow the right route for the Clyde Stride!!)
Here is the actual route for that section:
After the road, back onto a more solid tarmacked path. I think I was getting onto coming into Bothwell woods. I was guessing a bit from here. I knew the river should be on my right but couldn’t be exactly sure where it was.
The lack of directions and the pain in my leg was getting to me mentally. I took a wrong turn in the woods and eventually came out of the woods and got back on what I thought was the track. Through part of a town which I think was Uddingston, I came across a Clyde Walkway map and asked a woman coming down a path if left was the way to get to Uddingston. She said yes so I ran on for a short distance. I ran into a bit of a built up area and realised I probably wasn’t on the right track. So I stooped and gathered my thoughts.
Doubtful thoughts. Just after about 4 miles in, I was more or less lost. I knew sort of where I was, but I wasn’t sure of where I was going. My leg was sore and I had pmt which I think was making my mind frame that little bit less stable than it normally would have been. Just 4 miles into a 13 mile run and I couldn’t even follow a map!!
The terrain wasn’t what I was used to and as a result my mile splits were no where near what I’ve been used to recently. I seriously felt like giving up.
I picked myself up and told myself just to run. Try the path the woman was coming down and realised it was the way yo Bothwell Castle that I should have aimed for (not Uddingston). I ran down the path and before long I was on the riverside path past Bothwell Castle.
About 10k in, a tree had fallen and covered the path, there was a way around it but it would be better if the tree wasn’t there!!
Uphill towards the David Livingstone memorial bridge and past a sign of the NCN 74. I turned left and onto another trail route. Very undulating again. I wasn’t sure if I was on the right track but continued until I got to a very steep drop and what I think was the remains of a viaduct? (perhaps).
I went down the steep hill only to find that I couldn’t really see much if a trail anymore and decided after about 8 miles, that this would be a good mid way point for today. 16 miles on this route today would do. 22 miles in total.
I sat down on the stone wall and looked around. It was a lovely day, sun shining, great weather for running in. I looked into the distance and at the map and I think I made out where the route would continue but I was finished getting lost and not knowing where I was for today.
I have no idea if I followed the right route or not… the bit of the road seemed a bit wrong…there was a pathway at the first bridge I came to, but the gate was locked so I presume I was meant to go on that path rather than on the road… but who knows. I’m sure the route will be well marked out on the day. got some good experience on the trails anyway.
I tried to eat a chicken wrap id taken with me for lunch, but I couldn’t even get past two bites of it. Pathetic. I took a few videos and pictures and decided I should head back. I’d try and be more positive. I hadn’t failed, I’d have run 22 miles that day and had to get ready for my niece coming to stay.
Sure this week I’ve probably shot my challenge of running 365 miles in training for the Clyde Stride but it was a high goal and depended on me doing all of my training runs.
Running back to the car I was trying to take all of the route in. It seemed a lot quicker getting back (as it usually does because you know the way). With about 2 miles to go the back of my right ankle was still niggling, then when I was running over the uneven ground, my right ankle tweaked a little as if I’d started to go over my ankle a little. Perhaps I’ll try trail shoes I thought, see if they give me a bit more support.
Here’s one of the uphills about 13 miles into the route… pretty steep but not too long…. (I was running down it)…
I got back to the car, had a lucozade, milkshake and an apple. I phoned my sister to see how she was getting on. Contractions were 16 minutes apart but not too sore. Baby was on it’s way.
That night I noticed a 3 inch bruise up the outside of my right ankle, and it had swelling on it too. It’s the ankle I sprained in April last year when I was forced to take about 8 weeks off running. Arg!! After a few days the swelling has gone down, but the scary thing is apart from the little tweak I gave it on the trails, I didn’t notice anything out of the ordinary, especially on the first run we did before I felt the stiffness in it.
I spent the rest of the weekend looking after my 3 year old niece and visiting my sister and her new arrival. I’ve run 35 miles against a target of almost 60 and I’ve managed to pick up a bit if an injury.
I have a week off work next week, I’m off to visit friends and family up north. The plan was 4 runs totalling about 50 miles but I think I’m going to be sensible and let life have a bit of precedence instead of running for once. My next planned run will be the 31 miler from where I was born to where I grew up next Friday. Hopefully that will be enough rest for me.
Run: 16 miles, 2 hrs 28, Pace: 9:19 , Calories: 1600.
Ave HR: 140 (77%) , Max HR: 170 (89%)