Little Round Lionheart

Longleat 10k – Longleat, Wiltshire: Race Review
Date: 7th February 2016
Start Time: 9am
Course, surface and environment: Chip timed multi-lap through the stunning Longleat estate in dampest, stormiest Wiltshire. Catering is one table, roughly halfway, with bottled water.
Ins and outs: The safari park and attractions were open, due to the Chinese New Year celebrations the previous evening, but were pretty quiet, due to Storm Imogen passing over the night before. Leading to damp and twig-strewn conditions.
Atmosphere: A bit chaotic, without the inflatable start gate as the organisers had been unable to set up the night before, due to the storm. But we all went off, after a shorty delay to allow those in the traffic queue to get parked up and make their way to the start line in front of the spectacular Longleat House.
Runners: smallish, typical of the event at around 250-300
Goodie Bag: TBC, they’d run out by the time I finished but took my race number and offered to post one to me, which was sweet of them. I heard rumours of chocolate from the other runners, so I’m looking forward to finding out (who gets chocolate in the post anymore?!?).
Bling: It’s all about the bling – the coveted Lion’s Head medal on a blue ribbon
Roundie performance: slow and steady with some walking on the steepest hill (all but the super-fit walked as it was basically a 1 in 5 steepening to a 1 in 3 climb), faster than expected but slow for me. Overall – relieved to do as well as I did after a week of horrendous lactic acid poisoning
What the Bear got up to: Cheering on the runners, taking lots of photos of the gorgeous Chinese New Year decorations and generally thinking about brunch
What I learnt: Lactic acid poisoning exists and gives you the most rotten tummy for a week, but you do recover and can run again if you just rest enough and drink enough water.
Ostriches will chase you and hiss like snakes, even if you’re just running alongside their field on the opposite side of a fence. This is because they are big, angry, territorial pinheads. Very funny.
Happy Chinese New Year – have a great year of the Monkey

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