It was the Chevin Chase two years ago which was the subject of my first MarathonMann blog so it wouldn’t be right for me to miss it this year.
Both my wife Helen and I entered this year and we again had an amazing time. For the uninitialised, the Otley Chevin is a beautiful and high ridge north of Leeds, near the town of Otley and offers amazing views of the surrounding countryside. The race itself starts in the town of Guiseley and goes up and up on road, then out and back along the Chevin ridge before climbing to the summit and then descending back into town.
What you need to understand about the race is that it’s hard, No, really hard. First you have the almost endless uphill on road. Then you have rocky woodland paths, slippery rocks and mud followed by the impossibly steep climb to the top. Then, if you think the uphills are bad, watch your step on the downhill slippery muddy rocky bits where one false move may be your last.
And to be honest, that’s what makes it so attractive. But today, I didn’t really fancy putting myself through lots of pain and going all-out to do an amazing time so I ran within my comfort zone and ended up really enjoying it.
In the end though, I finished three seconds faster than my best ever last year and that feels good. Helen thought she hadn’t done at all well but did a massive three minutes of her best time.
So what’s the best bit? Well that’s adding a shot of brandy to the latte we make when we get home. Now that hits the spot!
“He replied, ‘Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.’”
Matt. 17:20 NIVUK