My 401st run for Ben's 401

My 401st run for Ben's 401

Yesterday I completed my 401st run since I started Couch to 5k, on the same day that Ben Smith completed his 401st marathon in 401 days for the charity Stonewall.

I hadn't realised the coincidence until last Monday, when I logged my 398th run on Garmin (yes, I'm sad, I always number my runs), and signed up for Ben's virtual marathon. Oh, I thought, I wonder if I could do my 400th run when he's doing his last day... and then someone pointed out that it would be even better if...!

This meant that I would have to get three runs in over the next two days, and run on three consecutive days. Also, I wanted to do a 10k for Ben's virtual marathon (obviously I can't do a marathon), and not only that but I haven't run any distance over 6k since May. Hmmm. I needed a plan.

On Monday I ran 3k. On Tuesday I ran 1.5k in the morning, and 1.5k in the afternoon.

On Wednesday I took the bus up to Alsop Station on the Tissington Trail. The bus driver wished me a pleasant run back as I got off, and I contemplated the task before me. My plan was to run 1km and then walk .25km all the way down. I started with my warm-up walk, which neatly took me to .25km, and set off. 1km in, and all was well. I walked, and ran again. And again. Oh, was that 3.75? Should I be running or walking? My mental maths was not up to this! To add to the difficulties, Tissington, which I always think of as the mid-point, loomed up at 4.47km. What? Never mind, I stopped for a wee in their lovely clean loos and then it was 5-and-a-bit-k all the way home. I didn't think I could run the whole thing, but I managed it with only a couple of short breaks.

I stopped the Garmin on 10k at 1:21:45, which is interesting as my last 10k, in May, was 1:18:51, and that was over a very hilly Chatsworth course when I had been in training for weeks. Granted, the Trail is all downhill, and I did have to walk on the Chatsworth event, but Wedneday was faster than I was expecting.

It would have been better if I'd realised the timing earlier and therefore not had to do four runs in three days. It would have been better if I'd been fitter. It would have been better if I'd been running more regularly. It would have been better if my cheap flip-belt equivalent fitted better and didn't ride up under my boobs. It would have been better if, having come up with a plan, I'd stuck to it. It would have been better if I could add up.

Lesson learned: you can do more than you think you can :)

32 Replies

  • That's fabulous, well done.

    I love Alsop as a starting point in either direction (initially just because the pay and display machine was broken!) and can relate to the joy of stopping for the loo at Tissington.

    His run inspired yours and yours will inspire mine this afternoon and so it goes. Thank you.

  • Thank you :) I've often wondered about parking for free in the big lay-by a little bit further up because you can get up onto the Trail there as well, but while the P&D machine is still broken I reckon we're okay :D

    I hope you've had a great run this afternoon.

  • Sadly not... I had news of the sudden death in his mid-20s of the son of an old friend... who had already had a child die as a toddler as well as plenty else to contend with. A lot of other people to let know.

    I coughed up for a Peak Park Authority Pass!

  • Oh, I am sorry. That must be incredibly hard. I'm sure they will appreciate all the help you can give.

    I'm not sure I use the Peak Park car parks enough to make it worth their annual permit. Having said that, I do get frustrated when I have to guess the amount of time I'm going to spend somewhere.

  • I am rubbish at carrying cash, especially change. I am quite sure I don't use the car parks enough to come out ahead financially... but given up too often due to have having the money to park, so I see it as an investment in running. Got a full set between Derbyshire Dales Resident, Derbyshire County Council Countryside, Severn Trent (Carsington etc), and now Peak Park. Oh and I bulk bought Chatsworth car park tickets for a discount...

  • Ha - you forgot the National Trust! I've often thought it would be nice to go up to Longshaw and run up there. Great collection though - I can just imagine you shuffling through them as Google strains to be off :D

  • Got that one too! (Life membership from my grandmother's 'estate'... brilliant choice by my Dad much better than cash)

    Longshaw do regular 10Ks don't they? And a few other properties round the country. And despite my known aversion to organised events (so this virtual one might be just right for me), these do seem tempting.

    Things haven't got any less 'death-y' as I've just had a sprint round the house after cat + pigeon and then, sadly, had to take the pigeon to the vet, almost certainly for competent despatch, as it was unable to fly.

  • Full house then! What a nice legacy :) Longshaw might just be as hilly as Chatsworth, though - perhaps not as immediately, but the elevation over the course would be something, I should think.

    You have had a day. I hope you can have a restful and reflective evening with family. Or, if it works better, a nice peaceful bath and a quiet book on your own!

  • That's brilliant Annie, what a great coincidence! You should contact Ben and tell him! That sounds a great run.

    I've just done mine this morning for the same challenge, but I'm struggling to work out how to actually post the run on the site as I do want the bling! Any ideas?

    Update: A lovely man from Etchrock sent me a link so it's now done! If you need the link let me know Annie.

  • Oh, well done on sorting the Etchrock site - not easy, is it? I'm glad someone helped you. Great that you did your run as well! Where's the report, eh? I shall go and look for it as soon as I have finished replying here. Mind, I should have posted this report yesterday, so I have no room to nag!

  • Great run, great story Anne. Great acheivement 401 times out the door and running. Well done on the 10k, that must be a lovely area to run in, so pretty but very hilly.😅

  • Thanks, Jan, it just proves that C25K is a great programme if it can motivate a life-long exercise shirker like me to keep going!

    The great thing about running on the Trail is that it is flat and all ever-so-slightly downhill, so it was a good choice for yesterday :D

  • I love the Trail..on my bike though...😐

  • I've tried cycling, but I'm not getting on very well with it at the moment :(

  • It couldn't have been better, it was a great run, well done😀

  • Thank you - it was a great feeling of accomplishment :)

  • This is great Annie ! I have noticed you numbering your runs on Garmin and did wonder what they were for :-)

    Well done to you , this is a real achievement ! The photo looks lovely, what a gorgeous place for a run :-) xxx

  • Thanks, Pops! I know, what sort of sad bugger numbers their runs, eh? :D

    It is gorgeous on the Trail. This is what the Tissington Trail HM-ers will be running this weekend, and I will be there to cheer them all on. I'm hoping for good weather because it can be a bit bleak up at the top end - not so bad down here, but it's more open and moor-ish up there. The Trail is an old railway line and I deliberately chose this for my run because it's downhill all the way - cheating or what? :D xxx

  • Tee Hee, I don't blame you Annie , I would've done exactly the same ! :-D xxx

  • You know how I feel about hills! xxx

  • I've registered for the Ashbourne 10k in March , Tissington Trail, my first 10k eeekkkkk. I've also registered for Ben's virtual marathon but doing my 10k pledge in couple of runs 😃

  • Fantastic! I can cheer you on as well! And great that you have registered for Ben's virtual 10k as well. Loads of people are doing it in several runs - just upload to Etchrock (be patient!) and that will be fine. Well done on all counts!

  • Wow, what a brilliant way to do your virtual run and celebrate all Ben Smiths hard work! You were obviously feeling very inspired and what a fantastic run! 🙂Beautiful photo too Annie! x

  • Thanks, Sandra! I love the idea of having a virtual run for everyone who couldn't run with him, and I like the way it can be spread over time too. And bling - I'm a sucker for bling :)

  • What a lovely place to run - I've cycled it once a few years ago, it's a really gorgeous place, but a bit far for me to go regularly, I have trail-envy and well done on your 401st, what an inspiration to us beginners, thank you :-)

  • Thank you! I am lucky because it's on my doorstep and it's easy running.

    I'm not sure about the inspiration bit - other than perspiration, obviously :D - but all I ever did was follow the programme. It took me 50 runs to graduate, not the standard 27, and I'm still a slow runner. I'll never run marathons or even HMs but I am very content just pottering along like this. Happy running to you!

  • Truly amazing! :)

  • It's a grand place :)

  • Wow - 401 runs what an achievement, well done. Lovely photo, looks nice place to run. I have a running diary and have started numbering my post graduation runs (only 59 so far but certainly more than I would have imagined this time last year!).

  • It is a beautiful place to run - I'm very lucky :) A running diary is such a good idea! You can look back on your runs and see how you are progressing, or just where you have been for your runs. Great stuff - they will soon build up :)

  • Well done Annie!!

  • Thank you :)

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