Up early

Had a days work marshalling on saturday and so got up super early (for me) at half six to run. I was so glad I did, set me up nicely for the day!

The beach feels different at that time of day and it was a sheer pleasure to do seven miles along it and then up to the cliffs home.

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Sun peeking over the cliffs
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Early morning view from Witches Point
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Dawn on the rocks

Tour De Soak

Its been two years since I started running and the reason for starting and keeping going haven’t completely changed only morphed slightly. For those new to the blog you can read here about why.

So yesterday the sun shone, I needed a long run and I decided to do a loop taking in as many of the places Soaky and I used to explore as I could manage.

I headed for Witches Point first off

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Note the blue clear skies – More of that later

Easy enough going to start, I was running with a pack and water as I was intending to go over 10 miles at least.  It was already hot early on though so off came the shirt. With the breeze on the cliffs it didnt really feel hot enough to burn though ….

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Ogmore by Sea – As Soak got older she couldnt make it to Monknash beach due to the stiles and hills so I used to drive her here so she could have a play.

From Ogmore I cut inland following the river.

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Ogmore river plus floodplains.  We used to come here as it was easy to park and let her play in the dunes on the otehr side.

It was midday now and getting hotter plus away from the coast the breeze had died away and I was working hard and sweating just to keep a reasonable pace. I was gonna have to ration water or find some.

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Path up to St Brides common – I was now being slowly roasted alive.
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Golf course – sans any water. However I did have some miserable old gits shout and wave their clubs at me as I cut through – Sod you its common land.
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I cut through the common and past the quarry and across the road to the Castel Upon Alun side.
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Through the bracken. We used to walk a lot up here because she loved chasing rabbits – Never caught one but she liked trying.
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Down to the ford – I judged I had enough water to not have to fill up here as I didnt fancy stomach problems as well as heatstroke.  Another favourite Soaky spot where she would splash about.
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Had to come home via roads …. No real choice as my next destination was Wick.  For some reason Soak loved it up here too, not sure why but was spent a lot of time on these back lanes just wandering about together.
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15 hot tiring miles later I fell into my friends pub for a pint of Gwynt Y Ddraig cider. Well if you run out of water ….. You got to toast your old dog with something!

Seeing all these places was a great way to remember Soak and I was proud I could run the lot.  Its only been two years but I’ve come a long way in more way than one.  I’m still as dumb as they come in some ways, I’m rather sunburned writing this …. We live and learn!

 

 

Boat race!

Not the Oxford v Cambridge type but today included a race against a boat along the coast. The run started normally as per usual.  Down to the beach and along to Witches Point.

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Tide was right out so the reef was very exposed – Note the slanty photo angle ….
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The recent deluges means the waterfall is alive!

At Witches Point I stopped to turn to return home (around 3 and a half miles) and noticed a sailboat just coming around the point and headed with the wind in the direction homeards…..

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If you can spot the boat … youve got better eyesight than me – but I promise its there

I wonder if Im faster than a sailboat over 2 miles? Even better a boat that doesnt know its in a race. The course was set – me v boat to the headland in the photo below. I had some rocks to traverse but I reckoned I could do it

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So as the boat drew level I was off.  Boats actually go much quicker than they seem when you’re trying to keep level so for the 2 miles or so I was going pretty much flat out. I was pleasantly surprised that I could do the first mile over a lot of rocks at 7 minute pace but the boat was keeping level. The second mile was just wet sand and with some determination and complete disregard for my health I managed a 6 minute mile (probably the first and only in my life) to come in just ahead of the boat. Winner winner chicken dinner!

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Boat slightly behind!

Next up a speedboat ….. kidding …. Last risk taken before the ultra …. probably

Rainy day greens

So the holidays started officially yesterday and so I ran despite the torrential rain. I mean it was stair-rod stuff, cats n dogs, pissing it down. You know the drill. So I only did the beach and back as by the time I got there I was like a drowned rat and didn’t fancy dying of hypothermia running along the exposed beach despite it being july – its still Wales!

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Wait whats that in the distance braving the storm
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#spottedthehelicopter – A chinook in fact. Just noticed you can see the rain falling in the photos
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The path to the beach becomes a river but everythings so so so green!

Fields and cliffs and fields … and a road

Tide was in so a bit of gamboling (Just wanted to use the word) in the cool breeze through the Welsh countryside and up along the clifftops. Plus a quick visit to see the folks!  5 miles at a steady pace ramping up to 7.30 miles as I was ticking along on the roads to incorporate the parents house. Legs feeling rather good at the moment. Perhaps form is coming back at the right time!

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Blue skies and fluffy clouds =)
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View of the Bristol Channel from the cliffs
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More fields – This ones going a bit nuts with wildflowers – I shall keep an eye on it!

Back in the groove

Got a run in before the impending storms … that never really happened – shame I was looking forward to some thunder and lightning.  It was humid though.

I appear to now only suffer from plantar fascitis when not running ….. once I’m running it seems fine but afterwards and in work it aches – go figure! I’ll live with that tradeoff to be honest … typical runners reaction I guess!

To the photos!

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Spottedtheship?
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Moody lighting
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Up the ladders and up the cliffs 
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Along the cliffs and home