Log in
Bridge to 10K
7,391 members β€’ 8,897 posts

Lyme Park 7k Night Run aka Mountaineering!

Hello lovely running friends :)

So sorry it's been a while. To cut a long story short, since I went for 17.5k without any insoles in at all, I've really struggled to run more than 2 or 3k without pain. However, it's getting easier, and my ultra-running-vicar-friend from church asked a few of us if we'd like to do a night run in Lyme Park. To be honest, I wasn't sure I was up to it. I seem to get pain after 4 or 5k these days, I managed 7k recently, but my left knee got really really tight towards the end of the run. However, I've long been a believer in running for mental health reasons, indeed that was the reason I started Couch to 5K in the first place. I had to weigh up the risks of doing a tough run before I was quite recovered, against the risk to my mental health if I didn't. What swung it in favour of the run was that today was the day my ex was getting remarried, one of the hardest days ever emotionally for me, I just had to do it, even if I crawled over the finish line. I managed to get the Lyme Park office to send me through the route in advance, but the map was really confusing, but they said it wasn't too hilly, so I entered!!

I nearly chickened out. My knee was hurting this morning, the weather forecast showed basically water, oh and the thing about a night run is it's in the dark, oh and I struggle with huge groups of people. I had to do it though. If it killed me, so be it!!

I rocked up at Lyme Park, in the car obviously, parked it somewhere, and went to join the line to register, my first time ever registering for a race, although technically it wasn't a race, it was just a run. I finally met up with my running buddy Phil the ultrarunning vicar. There seemed to be loads of people around and nothing happening, so we managed to find somewhere inside to stand and chat. Eventually people started to move out, so we followed, and positioned ourselves near the back. Phil later told me that that way, you feel good for passing people, rather than being at the front and being overtaken, though I suspect he may just have been being realistic about my abilities!!

The run then. An easy enough start, but I deliberately kept the pace down, as I know my knee tends to get tight after about 4 or 5k, I wanted to try and go for as long as I could before calling in the paramedics. The start was fairly flat, nice gentle climbs, though it was very dark, did I mention that? Actually, the start was brilliant for a gradual warm up, we had to do a fair bit of walking, simply due to the volume of people getting through gates, but the gentle climb and flat sections were enjoyable. Then I noticed the line of head torches seemingly heading up into the sky. Oh my word, the next short hill was brutal, as was the corresponding downhill.

What should happen now is that I describe the next set of climbs and descents, but basically it was vertical for the next about 4k. Well maybe not vertical, but very very steep. I had to walk on the steep climbs, and bless him, Phil stuck with me. What a hero! This is where tips from an experienced runner are invaluable though, he said when you get to a flat-ish part, try to at least jog, it keeps the heart pumping fast and keeps the oxygen getting to the muscles, and you actually recover faster than if you were just walking. That man is a genius, it worked!

Eventually after climbing up to the sort of altitude where I expected to see airliners below me, we started to descend. The first part of that was down a really steep slippy hill, and boy was I glad of my new trail shoes, they were brilliant, though I did fall on my bum once lol! And then, a proper path. I wouldn't go as far as to say a road, but definitely a path, and I felt good enough to increase my pace. Down the path, onto the road, back towards the point where we started, though the inflatable finish thingy, never seen one of those in the flesh before. There was even a big LED clock thing, though strangely it wasn't showing the time elapsed, just the actual time.

A nice surprise to finish. Not sure you could call it bling, as this event was organised by the national trust, it was a wooden medal, but my first.

I shall attach 2 pics from my phone: 1 of the medal itself, and me back home looking rather disheveled, and 1 of me and Phil just before we started.

Have fun everyone, happy running, and it's great to be back!

[EDIT] Oh I forgot to say, turns out that this run has done wonders for my knee, just the sort of stretching I needed it seems, though we'll see tomorrow morning :P

Neil

70 Replies
oldest β€’ newest

Such a lovely post Neil, and very well done! You turned a potentially difficult day into one worth celebrating.

BTW think wooden bling is the best kind. πŸ˜€πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

1 like
Reply

Awww thanks Sandy, yes, it's not been the best day, but I knew the endorphin rush would help put things into perspective :) It's the only bling I have anyway, so definitely the best kind!!

1 like
Reply

Well done Neil. Job well done I’d say! So nice to have a real running buddy (opposed to all of us virtual running buddies).

1 like
Reply

Thank you so much Goforitmama. Yes it was lovely to have someone there today. He's my vicar at church, and he knew I was struggling, so he ran with me, next to me the whole way. BUT, and this is a big but, if it wasn't for the love and support I've had here, my depression may well have got the better of me by now, so whilst it was great having an RRB, VRBs also rock!!

2 likes
Reply

So many of us are right behind you.

Take care xx

1 like
Reply

Thank you!!

Now stop it or you'll make me cry, even though I don't cry :P

Reply

Well done Neil. Sounds like a fun run, except for the verticals!! Glad it has helped your movement too. Keep it up.

1 like
Reply

Thanks Richard, part of it was really hard, but I'm stubborn, plus I had Phil there to encourage me. I'm feeling a little stiff now, but nothing a little pre-bedtime stretching session won't fix (I hope!!)

1 like
Reply

Awwwww Neil, I’m so happy for you. The fact that you ran to help you through a tough day, and that you managed it pain free. What a great guy Phil sounds! He was lovely sticking with you throughout. πŸ‘ŠπŸ‘πŸƒ

It sounded a brutal run, not even taking into account the fact it was dark! Amazing achievement and I bet you’re mighty chuffed and downright proud. Brilliant. Good for you! πŸ‘πŸ‘ Of course that counts as bling by the way! It’s a lovely medal. 😍

Glad you’re back. Happy running! πŸ˜€

1 like
Reply

Thanks Cheeky! Yup, tough day emotionally, but the endorphins helped. Yeah, I was really touched that Phil stuck with me, even though I know he would have just run the whole thing probably, in half the time. I'm so so glad I did it though. Yes, a tough run, although this night running thing is rather fun actually, although it did help having a line of head torches to follow. I am thrilled I did it though, it put a smile on my face, and now I feel like I'm not letting you lot down by not running (if you see what I mean!!)

1 like
Reply

Phil sounds like a gem! A good pal indeed. πŸ‘

I know what you mean about not wanting to let us down. I hit a bit of a wall after my 6k last Tuesday. The time was ok, but I didn’t enjoy it, which for me is unheard of. I’d done loads of hilly runs recently and had a mad social calendar and simply needed a few days off to reset, so I posted on here about it. I was overwhelmed by the replies saying it was a good idea and how everyone should do it every so often. I felt so much better getting β€œpermission” from my VRBs! Silly isn’t it?! πŸ˜€

1 like
Reply

Yes I know what you mean too! I know for me if I'm just pushing all the time, then it takes the fun out of it, so always good to take a week or two out if needs be. I won't be running now until Friday most probably, due to work etc, but I'm not going to worry about it.

I think it's great though, that we do feel some accountability to our VRBs on here, I for one certainly feel the great benefit of that. Hilly runs though... just something about them. I both loathe and love them in equal measure I think, and the are addictive! It certainly takes your mind off the distance.

Reply

Wow Neil, I know Lyme Park is one of the hardest Parkruns in the country and you go and do a run there in the dark! Well done you! Your ultrarunning vicar sounds like a good pal.

Enjoy that eco friendly bling!

1 like
Reply

Thanks Dexy, yes, Lyme is hard, it's actually the 2nd hilliest parkrun in the country if I remember correctly, though this was far harder than the parkrun route, much more climbing. At 5k we were still climbing, no sign of stopping, I was beginning to wonder if there would be a ladder down to the car park at the end!! Yeah, Phil's a good chap, in more ways than one.

1 like
Reply

I hope you don’t ache too much this morning. πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈβ›°πŸ…

1 like
Reply

Actually I'm surprisingly good! The back of my knee is a little niggly, but nothing awful, way better than it was yesterday morning. A little tightness in my left calf, but a quick session with the roller fixed that I think, so all good here, thank you for your concern!

1 like
Reply

Oooh buddy, that sounds like a tough course, but look - you were tougher! I hope you are mighty proud of how far you have come, and what you can now do. I am proud of you - and so impressed. You are so much more resilient than you think. πŸ’ͺ Glad you had a good friend by your side, too.

Running can soothe the soul. 😘 Well done, Neil. You are an inspiration.

Sadie-runs xxx

PS how did you cope with the crowds?! It’s the one thing stopping me from entering organised runs ...

1 like
Reply

Thank you lovely Sadie!! I must admit I may not have been so quick to sign up if I'd realised just how bad the hills were, but I'm still really glad I did it. It was good to have a friend there. Phil is an amazing runner, and an all round decent bloke, but he'll never knock you off the best running buddy spot, you know that, right? 😘

I have to say... I'm fairly keen to run bits of that in the daylight and sunshine. I bet it's lovely. You could see for miles, you could see the lights right out to Manchester, it was just beautiful.

Oh the crowds? I found the start a bit tough, too many people really, but it wasn't horrendous, and once the first 1k of the run was out of the way, everyone spread out a bit, so it was fine. I was especially chuffed that people were coming in well after me, somehow I wasn't the slowest!!

1 like
Reply

😘

Reply

Great post Neil. Very well done. πŸ˜ƒNo looking back, there is good stuff ahead, - onwards and upwards- er- with a headtorch!πŸ˜€

1 like
Reply

Thanks Elfe! And very wise advice there. Being on my own now, and naturally tending to be a bit of a loner, I do have time to dwell on things rather, so you're right. Onwards and upwards!! And yeah, why not with a headtorch!!

1 like
Reply

Wow Neil! What a neat run and a great friend to help you through a difficult day. I'm so glad you went for it and got some really neat bling. Congrats on getting out there today despite some internal and external struggles.

1 like
Reply

Thank you! I think that's got to be my slowest 7k ever, but I don't care :) Got to out-run those demons somehow, even if it is slowly up a steep hill!!

Reply

You left those demons on the bottom of the hill. They're too lazy to climb the steep hill! With a hill like that, time is irrelevant.

1 like
Reply

Thanks Allie, yes I think you're right, normal expectations of speed go right out of the window don't they? Maybe one day I'll be able to skip up them like a mountain goat :P

1 like
Reply

Wow 316neil! Well done that man!

You say you’ve been having problems since you took your insoles out...can’t you put them back in?

I think I know the bit you describe as brutal. Is it the bit with the folly on top?

Glad your knee was ok. I hope knee kniggles are over and you can get back to your usual runs. It does help mentally doesn’t it. I found that too πŸ‘πŸ…

1 like
Reply

Thank you Baddie! Oh they’ve been back in don’t worry, it’s just I have one pair and two pairs of running shoes! I have another pair of insoles on order... Β£55 seems a small price to pay to avoid that happening again!

Reply

Yep, if you need them it’s totally worth the investment.

A colleague asked me if running makes me more hungry. I said yes and it’s costing me a fortune in food and Lycra! Money well spent!

Reply

I was wondering that too! Glad to hear insoles are back in as know that effects the knees! Sounds like such a great run, I love Lyme - and would love to do something like this - lucky you to have the opportunity and fitness plus good ultra running friend!πŸ™ŒπŸ’«

1 like
Reply

Thanks CatMo13, Lyme's great isn't it? What's also great is the effort the park staff go to to keep the place looking nice and maintain their paths. There's a run I do up from the Macclesfield canal into the park, and the first section of that is a brutal climb up a farm track, and it's rough as anything. The minute you go through the park gate, the surface is superb.

I'm genuinely surprised I made it, maybe I'm not as unfit as I thought :)

Reply

Oh BaddieThePirate I forgot to mention the route. I did a relive video of it, which you can see here. We passed Lyme Cage on the way down actually, that gives you an idea of how hilly it was. Lantern Wood was the high point I think. relive.cc/view/2105122809

Reply

Wow!

1 like
Reply

Great to read. I used to go Lyme as a kid before moving South- good times. A brave run and so many pluses. Glad to catch this.

1 like
Reply

Thanks Rach, yes, Lyme's a lovely place. I grew up in High Lane, and since my divorce a couple of years ago, am back living with the parents again, in the house where I grew up, and I'm really happy that Lyme features in my runs. I just wish they'd iron out some of those hills :P

1 like
Reply

Wonderful post Neil! You did amazingly well! Not everyone gets a wooden bling! So well done again despite all your hurdles you are a winner!! πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½πŸ‘πŸ½

Reply

A huge well done to you! That sounds hard. I've got bad night vision so I daren't take on a night race as I'd end up in a ditch πŸ™„

I loooove the wooden medal, wish more companies would (πŸ˜‚ ) do this.

1 like
Reply

Thanks so much Irishprincess, yes it was one of the hardest runs I've ever done, but the endorphin rush once I got onto the final descent was just amazing, I'm grinning from ear to ear now just thinking about it.

The medal is great, my first in fact, and I have to say I'm pretty impressed with the National Trust who own Lyme and have organised this.

1 like
Reply

Brilliant that you got out and did such a hard sounding course, Neil. I did wonder how you’d got on after the β€œno insoles” disaster - if that was me then I think I’d have been out of action for ages! ❀️

It sounds like you really needed this run yesterday, and the smile on your face with your first bling is priceless. (And of course it’s still bling even if it’s wooden! My first bling was plastic.πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜‚)

A huge well done. Hope the knee is feeling ok today. πŸ˜ŠπŸ‘πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸ’₯πŸ’₯❀️

1 like
Reply

Thank you! Being totally honest, I probably wouldn't have attempted it had I known how insane the hills were, but it was just what I needed, and I'm very happy that I could even run at all given the whole insoles thing. My knee is pretty good today, and little niggly first thing, but that may just have been due to a tight left calf or something, and a bit of rolling on that seems to have fixed it. It's all good, and thank you so much for your continued support x

1 like
Reply

Brilliant Neil! I did a 8k dark trail run a couple of weeks back. I hate running in the dark and in the eve so that was my challenge! Very enjoyable. Well deserved bling! πŸ₯‡

Hope your knee recovers well. 🀞

1 like
Reply

Thank you! It was certainly one of those out-of-my-comfort-zone things, but I'm so so glad I did it in the end. How was your 8k?

1 like
Reply

Loved the surface being trail and wasn’t completely dark till half way through. Everyone had to wear torches. A few inclines but generally ok. Would do it again! 😬

1 like
Reply

What's that? You'd be inclined to do it again? :D

1 like
Reply

Well done Hidden...this sounds fantastic, it's obviously done you the world of good, I can tell from the enthusiasm in your write up....just what you need to take your mind off the days events. Hope you're not bruised too much from your fall?!! Love the pics too...I like the dark evenings coz I get to put my flashing disco lights on! I bet it looked great with all the lights bobbing up and down?! Nice bit of bling there too for your hard work!! X

1 like
Reply

Thank you dear Mummycav, yes it was awesome seeing all the head torches bobbing up and down, and slightly unnerving seeing them disappearing upwards!! Yes, even though my knee was still slightly suspect, I really needed the distraction hence why I did it. I've said this for a while, if I have to I will run on a slighy injury if it avoids my mental health sliding further. It's not idea, but it's about balancing risks. I do not do this often though, but I'd say this was a good case for breaking my own rules slightly :P As ever, thank you for the encouragement x

1 like
Reply

I agree Hidden, sometimes running is the only answer...well done for nailing the bits of hill you could manage and well done to your mate for staying with you on the walky bits!! Just be careful with the niggles...you don want them shouting at you?! X

1 like
Reply

Thanks Bev, you’re the best xxx

1 like
Reply

😘

Reply

Great stuff! Fab report πŸ˜ƒ. I loved reading it. It was exhilarating πŸ’ͺπŸ‘πŸ˜ƒ. Sounds like fab fun I hope you got a hot drink and cake after that little lot

Great tip from your running mate about the flat bits. I love these running tips, scattered like corn 😁. Devoured hungrily by us all πŸ‘

I hope you’re feeling recovered today and basking happily in the warm glow of satisfaction from nailing a tough race. Well done, and congrats on your awesome medal

I’m off now to look up my nearest NT head torch race. Mind you I think they will all be dead hilly 😝

1 like
Reply

Thank you, I had a lot of fun actually, even if I did struggle with some of the climbs, which I swear were near-vertical. I was fully expecting to get issued with a climbing axe and crampons, maybe even an oxygen bottle :)

I'm sure you've got the link already, but see nationaltrust.org.uk/featur...

They can't all be hilly, right?

Reply

Lovely post Neil.

Some tough life stuff for you but fantastic attitude and resolve.

What a friend you have.Brillant and great advice.

Abi posted an interesting article on on winter speed challenge this week, from runners world I think,

similar to your friends advice in some way,we should always keep our feet moving at some pace when in session.πŸ€” and other stuff.

Look after yourself Neil and so well done, you will never forget your insoles again I am sure,

πŸ‘ŠπŸ’₯πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸ’₯🌟

1 like
Reply

Thank you Tbae, I know I can always rely on you for some great encouragement! I spotted the stuff from Abi actually, and will have a closer look when I get chance.

I've actually ordered a second set of the insoles for my trail shoes, so I'd actually have to have taken them out completely to forget now :)

1 like
Reply

Yes Neil could not believe a warm- up had some effective time limit.eg.

Interesting article.πŸ€”

πŸ‘ŠπŸ’₯πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸŒŸπŸ‘πŸ‘

Reply

Brilliantly well done Neil. I just cannot imagine running in the dark over rough terrain and I found it tough even walking Lyme Park in summer in daylight, so a great achievement especially on a tough day psychologically. What a great friend you have to encourage you πŸƒβ€β™‚οΈπŸ’₯πŸ™Œ

2 likes
Reply

Awww thanks Sandie, yes it was rough terrain, very hilly terrain (you know Lyme Park, right?) and very muddy terrain, but it was just so nice to get out there and forget everything.

Reply

We had a few days in the Peak District in September and, as we like to make the most of our National Trust membership, we look for properties and Lyme Park was on the list. I was intrigued by the Trust10 markers (see what running has done to me!) so we walked the dog round it. Hard going!

1 like
Reply

Ooh I hadn’t heard of this Trust 10 thing, I shall investigate!! Glad you got to have a nice break :) Lyme is about 2 miles from my home, so regularly featured in my running these days!

Reply

It’s a parkrun follow up with a similar atmosphere but 10k rather than 5k - last Sunday of the month at 9.00am and free to enter. They have them at various NT properties. I did my first 10k at the Clumber Park one (which is almost flat πŸ˜ƒ)

1 like
Reply

Loved your report of your fab achievement - doubly so on a challenging day - fantastic! Made me a teensy bit envious for the adventure. And such great bling! Well done. Keep on running πŸƒπŸ½β€β™€οΈ πŸ‘πŸ»πŸ˜Š

1 like
Reply

Thank you Biddy62, that's really kind. Adventure is definitely the word, I lost my bearings pretty quickly when we got away from the bits of the park I know, but it was definitely a lot of fun. Tough, but fun :) The National Trust do other night runs I disover: nationaltrust.org.uk/featur...

Reply

Ooooh I might check those out. Thank you 😊

1 like
Reply

Woah!! Have only just seen this Hidden ~ what a great post πŸ€— And the pics are fab ~ you look so ... smiley and proud! 😊 Once again your mindset of "I'm doing this whatever it takes" has inspired me! (I may need that on repeat prescription!🀣) Blinking heck will you EVER stop inspiring me?? You did it. On a very difficult day. Kudos to you Neil πŸ€—πŸ‘ŠπŸ’ͺ xx

1 like
Reply

I don't know what to say Flara, that's so lovely of you, and I'm really touched that anything I do running-related might inspire you, as I still feel like a rank amateur at this running thing. Thank you so much for your encouragement and support, it really does mean so much to me xxx

1 like
Reply

Well thank you for just being one of those incredible humans, whose presence on this forum (without even trying to) helps to make me believe in myself and encourages me to reach outside of my safe space when my head wants to say "you can't do this" ~ you're just blooming fab and lovely!! X

1 like
Reply

Oh my word, that’s the most lovely thing anyone’s said to me in ages, thank you so much. You’re not so bad yourself either ;)

Reply

What an inspiring post Neil!πŸ™Œ

Full of strength, determination & friendshipπŸ‘Œ

Great pics!... Be proud! 🀩

1 like
Reply

Thank you so much dreams. Definitely hard, definitely fun, and I'm looking forward to next year... I mean, in the same way as you look forward to the dentist I suppose :P

1 like
Reply

Ha! The same way as the dentist!... Are you hoping for a sticker next year as well as a medal? πŸ˜†

Great running πŸ™Œ

1 like
Reply

Thank you Neil for writing this special account. Well done to you and congratulations! 😊🍾πŸ₯‚πŸŒƒπŸŽ‰πŸ…πŸ‘πŸ»πŸŒšπŸ‘ πŸ’₯βš‘οΈπŸŒŒπŸƒπŸ»πŸ€Έβ€β™‚οΈπŸƒπŸ»πŸ€Έβ€β™‚οΈπŸƒπŸ»πŸ€Έβ€β™‚οΈ So lovely to have such support and manage to turn a very difficult day into one with memorable success.

1 like
Reply

Thank you!! I’m still struggling with my left knee a little bit, but I’m getting there, and being able to run away from the demons feels just so great :)

Reply

You may also like...