.....or so the saying goes!
It's Grim Up North is actually the name of a new running events company in the North of England and I had the pleasure to participate in one of their races this weekend. Don't be deceived by the company name, their races are set in spectacular parts of the UK!
I did the Canal Canter Marathon with my running mentor/father, Gary Wade. The race took place along the Leeds to Liverpool Canal, starting off along the canal by the extremely scenic Kirstall Abbey.
It was a nice, early start and perfect weather conditions - bright, sunny but not too hot. We initially headed off in the direction of Liverpool but only ran as far as Saltaire! At Saltaire, we did a turn about and headed back towards Leeds, past the start of the race and towards Leeds Station. One final turn around before we hit Leeds Station (and one final jelly baby/water station stop) and we headed back along the final 3 mile stretch, to the start/finish area!
We had the pleasure of bumping into my grandad on the route, out walking his dog. Luckily, he showed good lead control and no runners ended up in the canal! We also had support on course from my sister, Finty, and my step mum, Sandra who also kindly stepped in to help out the marshalls at the finish.
There was also a half marathon and a 10km race event on the day.
Initially, the course was rather quiet with the odd keen runner and cyclist up and about early on a Sunday morning. However, it didn't take long before we came across more runners, cyclists and dog walkers. Lots of friendly faces and words of encouragement on our trek. My dad kept me distracted from the distance with his tales from his latest races and the latest gossip from the running world! Sadly, despite it being a lovely, flat course and a promising start to the run, I became tired and my legs became heavy at around mile 19 to 20 so we walked/ran/chatted the last 6 to 7 miles.
I have no idea how it happened, but despite finishing with a poor time, I finished as third lady! Woo hoo! My trophy has taken pride of place on the mantlepiece, as such an event is unlikely to happen again!
A very friendly, well organised race. There were regular water stations with supportive marshalls. I'm really looking forward to their next event at Temple Newsham next month. If you happen to plan a visit "Up North", then you should check out the It's Grim Up North website and try and get along to one of their events.