A honeymoon without running

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The bargain I made with Dan that meant I was allowed to run in the 70 mile Grim Reaper race the week before our wedding was that I would not be taking my running trainers on honeymoon with us the following week.  10 whole days without so much as a jog or a Garmin stat.

It was a pretty big ask, but I really wanted to run 70 miles, so I made that deal!

As a wedding gift from my brother Mark, he had offered to drive Dan and I down to Gatwick very early on the Monday morning after we got married.  We actually left Norfolk at 12:30am after just under two hours of sleep!

We had a pancake breakfast at the airport and I was so tired that I actually fell asleep before takeoff and slept through the entire flight.  That has never happened before.  Dan was asleep not long after me.

When we arrived at the Italian airport we eagerly looked around for somebody holding a ‘Pearson’ sign.  I’d never had a private transfer before and we were told it could be 3-4 hours drive from the airport to our hotel.  Unfortunately though, there was no Pearson sign.  The holiday company had forgotten to book our transfer!  We had flown to Naples and although several of the airport staff spoke English we still weren’t really sure what was going on and if we would be able to get to our hotel.  We spent several hours flaked out in the airport waiting room trying not to drift back to sleep again.  After a few hours I was approached by the concierge of our hotel, Hotel Hermitage.  He happened to be at the airport to collect someone for a private transfer to the hotel and was offering us a lift.  We were exhausted by this point so took it!

When we did finally arrive three hours later at the hotel, the hotel had placed a bottle of champagne in our room on ice ready for our arrival.  Despite it not being their fault, but that of the travel agents.

Champagne on honeymoonWe made it down to the hotel restaurant for a quick lunch before zonking out for five hours on the bed.  Felt much more refreshed after that!

Although Italy had apparently had some of it’s worst weather with several thunderstorms all Summer it was beautiful the entire time we were away, except for our very last afternoon where we got a brief thunderstorm.  Our hotel had both a pool and a private beach so we spent a lot of time swimming.

By the pool in ItalyBy the beach in Italy(Good old running shorts tan line on show here!)

Me sat on the rocks in Italy on honeymoon

We also did loads of walking.  I would say we probably walked at least five miles each day.  One day we decided to walk up to Castellabate.  It looked fairly challenging from our hotel room, but it was even more challenging in real life!

Castellabate in Italy

Castellabate on honeymoonNearing the top the streets of the town got very narrow and very quaint.

Castellabate on honeymoonOnce at the top we had some dinner, then chilled out and got a couple of cocktails before heading back down again.

Dan with a cocktail in Italy on honeymoon

We took a day trip out to visit Pompeii and Vesuvius at the end of the first week and this was one of the highlights for me during our trip.  We studied Pompeii way back in primary school and I’ve always wanted to go and visit since then.  We were given a map and we rented a little phone each.  There were nearly 100 points dotted around the map and as we visited them, we typed the number of the point into our phone and called it for some information in English about where we were standing.  Some of the phone messages got us to walk through the houses to show us different areas near to where we were standing.  The phones were a really good idea.

Dan on the phone in Pompeii

The day we went on our day trip was probably the hottest of the days that we were away and I could feel the sun burning my scalp.  Luckily, I had a spare t-shirt in my bag…!

T-shirt on head in Pompeii

Pompeii PompeiiIt was a little crowded in places, and we only got three hours to spend in the city itself on our trip so had to really pick and choose the areas that we saw which was a shame but I still really enjoyed it.

Next up though was a visit to Vesuvius and I enjoyed this even more.  Our guide was fantastic and told us loads of information about the volcanic eruptions and how to tell when one is going to take place.

VesuviusIt was an incredibly steep walk up.  You definitely would not be able to do this walk if you didn’t have a good general fitness base!

Vesuvius

We had some beautiful views from the top though.

Me on VesuviusIt’s really weird to see in real life, because you assume that at the top of a volcano there is a massive hole that goes all the way down to the centre of the earth with molten lava bubbling inside (clearly watched too much children’s TV when I was younger!) but in actual fact you can see the bottom of the ‘hole’ quite close and it just looks like a vale between two hills with a lot of rubble and stones on top.

Inside VesuviusWhen we arrived back at the hotel that night we were pretty tired so chilled out in our room.  It turned out to be a national holiday in Italy though and we were surprised by dozens of fireworks going off right outside our hotel room and all along the coast that we could see from our bedroom balcony.

Me in Cilento on honeymoon Fireworks whilst on honeymoon, ItalyTwo days before coming home we booked a day trip to Capri.  Although an incredibly beautiful island this was probably the worst part of our honeymoon for the both of us.  We had seen several posters up around the area advertising the blue lagoon cave tours and it was something that we both very strongly agreed we wanted to do.  It was rather pricey, paying nearly €50 each for the trip to the island (this involved a two hour bus journey and a two hour boat trip), then each paying another €30 for the boat trip to the caves and another €17.50 for the cave tour itself.  But we hadn’t spent a huge amount of our honeymoon money as food and drink were much cheaper in Italy than we had first thought so decided to go ahead on the trip anyway.

The boat trip to the caves involved only about 15 minutes of actual boat ride and then queuing in a boat for small row boats to arrive and take us in groups of three into the caves.  We queued on that boat for an hour and a half.  Having already spent four hours travelling and then being sat on a boat which was essentially ‘still’ in the water made me start to feel incredibly sick.  The boats weren’t actually ‘still’ at all.  With so many other large boats arriving and queuing as well we were rocking ferociously from side to side the entire time we queued and I had to sit with my head in my hands looking at the floor to prevent myself from throwing up and I have never felt sick on a boat before.Blue caves in Capri

Eventually it was our turn.  Dan, I and another couple were the last remaining passengers on the boat and so they crammed all four of us onto the little rowboat.  One end was slightly bigger for two people and a smaller end for just one person.  That one end had both Dan and I pretty much on top of each other where the guy rowing our boat had rudely shoved me into place.  From the second we got onto the boat he was telling the four of us how most couples tip at least €15-25 and made sure to keep repeating this to us.  We blocked him out in the end as we had no intention on tipping anyone that told us we must tip, never mind someone demanding a tip as large as he was insisting upon.

We briefly forgot about our grumpy rower as we squeezed into the caves.  They were so pretty and almost eerie inside.

Blue lagoon caves in CapriBut very tiny.  Our guide gave us no information and seemed almost in a rush to get straight back out again.  We passed an area where several people had jumped out of their boats and were swimming in the cave.  The couple in the other side of the boat leapt in and so did Dan.  I had planned to but I was so worried that I would not be able to get back in quick enough and the guy on our boat would shout and be aggressive towards me again so I stayed on our boat and Dan got in.
Blue lagoon caves in Capri

He was in the water for one minute before the guy was shouting and screaming for the three of them to get back in the boat again.  Then we sped out of the cave and back towards the bigger boat.  The whole experience was probably three minutes and I was so disappointed and embarrassed by the way I’d been spoken to.  When we arrived back at our boat I was shouted at to get off quickly.  Not knowing where to put my hands or feet I’d done the best I could but I was pushed back into the boat and shouted at that I would have everybody in the water because I was so stupid.  The guy on the larger boat was much nicer and helped pull me up on board though.  The others got out fine.  We then had abuse hurled at us demanding that we pay a tip for our ride.  Dan tried to give the guy €3 as did the other guy but we just got a lot of abuse and swearing hurled at us as “That wouldn’t buy him anything!”  In the end he rowed off, slinging our money back towards us.  It wasn’t a very fun experience and in actual fact left me in tears.

When we returned from Capri I had an email through from my Mum saying that they currently had no way of collecting me from the airport two days later.  When I had logged into Facebook whilst sat around the pool earlier in the week to reply to some of the messages left on our wedding day Mark’s status had led me to believe something had happened to his car.  I messaged him, but he never replied so I assumed all was still good for our return on the 21st.Mark StatusFrom our hotel room that night after we received the email from my Mum we frantically searched for taxis, buses and trains.  It was going to cost us a minimum of £100 each to get back to Norfolk.  Luckily, after a Twitter and Facebook shout out plea for help, we discovered that Dan’s Mum would actually be in London on the day we were due to return anyway and she offered to pick us up and return us to my parents.  I had a call from my brother on the way back asking for a lift.  When he got in the car the conversation went a little like this…
Me: “So, what happened to your car?”
Mark: “Well, about 5 miles round the M25 after I dropped you off at the airport there was lots of smoke, some horrible noises and my car stopped on the hard shoulder of the M25.”
Me: “What did you do?”
Mark: “It was 3:30am.  I went to sleep!”
Me: “On the hard shoulder of the M25?!?!”
Mark: “No!  I pushed it a mile or so until I could pull it off onto a sliproad where I found a disused bus stop.”
Me: “So then what did you do?”
Mark: “I told you.  I went to sleep!”
Me: “Yes, but how did you get home?!”
Mark: “When I woke up I sold my car from the side of the road for scrap so that I could pay for the train ticket home.”

Only my brother!

Have you ever had any travel issues on holiday?
Do you do much exercise whilst you are away?

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Five things Thursday

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Yes I know this should probably be Three things Thursday or Thirteen things Thursday but that just didn’t work for me!  Instead here’s five random goings on from the madness that has been this week…

1) Bella has been a proper sweetie the past couple of weeks and spent lots of her time with Dan and I.  Either in the bedroom or sprawled across us both in the lounge.  (She prefers being able to touch both of us at the same time!)  On Monday night for a change Dan and I picked up a game of cards and played a couple of rounds of Go Fish before bed.  Bella playing cardsBella insisting on taking a good look at the cards we were using and then flopped herself over my arm so that it made it really difficult for me to play!

Bella playing cardsShe has a habit of getting in the way…getting in the bath when I’m trying to shower, lying on my laptop while I’m trying to blog…gotta love her though!

2) There is a spider invasion about to hit our bathroom any day now.  This time of year there always seems to be loads of the little spindly legged spiders everywhere.  I used to promote Bella as a spider catcher and she was great when she was younger.  However, whilst staying at my Aunt’s house when we were away on honeymoon, my Aunt repeatedly put her in the bath with a spider and Bella just freaked out and wouldn’t go near it.  Her spider catching days are over it seems!
When I returned from The Gladiator Games on Saturday and leapt in the shower I realised I’d missed a spider in the corner of the bathroom with the cobweb brush.  As I looked closer I realised that the spider was guarding hundreds of tiny unborn baby spiders by the ceiling.  As I got even closer with my phone to take a picture the spider lunged towards me so I stepped back.

Baby spider invasionI’d feel too guilty about sweeping them up in a cobweb brush and ditching them all outside, but at the same time I don’t want to be overrun with spiders so small I can barely see them!  I’m also pretty interested to see them grow and ‘hatch out’.

3) I’ve been loving creating some new exciting resources for the new term.  Last year it was all about The London Marathon, the year before everything was Hunger Games themed.  This year I’m working on creating some Simpsons resources.

Simpsons resources

4) I’ve really enjoyed running back at club twice a week lately.  Every year since I first began running I’ve looked forward to the long Summers so that I can head out and explore…perhaps go out on a trail run for a whole day with a picnic in my bag.  It’s never happened though.  The first Summer after I started running (2012) I was in Africa on a school trip, then in 2013 I was injured and finally this year I was on honeymoon!  Next year is my year!

After many weeks of struggling to regain fitness after my 70 miler I feel like I’m finally back where I was again which is great news.  I’m pushing it on runs and seeing results for doing so.  I’m still changing in the Tesco toilets on the way between work and running club though, often forgetting to take my trainers into the loos and reemerging in lycra and boots.  (Not a pretty or practical combo!)

Rocking the boots and lycra This week has also been the first week I’ve had to dig out my headtorch again.  Last night out on a 6 mile trail run we returned home in the pitch black at 8:20pm.  It’s not too much longer before every after run work will require a headtorch.First night out in a headtorch

This year’s Dusk ’til Dawn event is fast approaching as well.  I’ve persuaded three others from my running club to give it a go this year so between us we should hopefully have a better chance of getting round this time.  Headtorches with lots of batteries will be required there!

5) My food intake has been rubbish lately – I’ve been so exhausted with all of the new changes happening at the start of term that I’ve either forgotten or not had time to pack myself something for lunch on several days.  This week though I’ve bought a few microwavable soup pots.  Not the cheapest option, and probably not as healthy as packing in my own soups or salads, but definitely better than either starving through the day or eating half a bag of marshmallows and a couple of crackers which is what happened one day the week before when I had to rummage through my car for something to munch on!

Ainsley Harriott soup

Are your pets affectionate?
How do you get rid of spiders in your house?  Would you get rid of the unborn babies?!
Does your quality of food suffer when things get busy?

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Go Beyond Northampton Half marathon

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Yesterday was the Go Beyond Northampton Half marathon.  I had been earmarked for sector lead of the Great Houghton stretch from mile 7 to just after mile 9 and so I ran this section with a friend and fellow marshal on Monday after work before attending a briefing meeting with other marshals of the race on Tuesday.  We ran about 9 miles of the course in total.  I say ‘ran’ but in actual fact we took several blackberry picking breaks on our run!  The blackberries are perfect for picking at the moment.  Nice and round and juicy.

BlackberriesNo time for blackberry picking on the day of the race though unfortunately!

I arrived at Race HQ just before it opened at 8:30am and it was so relaxed!  Bacon sandwiches were going round, the baggage van outside was empty, a few people were sat on comfy seats around the bar…

Registration at Northampton Half marathon

Fast forward an hour and that calm relaxing space was anything but!  It seemed like all of Northampton had descended upon the pub we had taken over with t-shirt, number and chip collection points.  They all left it to the last minute and 600 people collecting everything within the space of 15 minutes was not an easy time for us marshals who jumped in to help on the registration desk!

Registration at Northampton Half marathonPeople were literally queuing out the door!  I had been scheduled to give a marshal briefing at 9am in Great Houghton with the marshals in my section but I think I stopped passing out t-shirts at 9:50am!  (The race began at 10am…I’m told on time!)  I collected the two marshals I was due to drop off at the first two checkpoints in my domain on the way and we left for our marshal briefing at the water station in Great Houghton.Start line at Northampton Half marathonThe fantastic volunteers at Great Houghton had already set tables up by the time I arrived and were ready to start pouring out water.  I gave a quick briefing to everyone involved and handed out the pile of reflective jackets in my marshal box.

Water station at Northampton Half marathonThe water station was at mile 9 on the course so we still had more than half an hour to ensure there was enough water ready to go for when the front runners came through.  One of the team on the water station was a runner himself, but the others to my knowledge were not.  They were trying to guess the finishing times and were thinking about 95 minutes.  I guessed 70 minutes, and was the closest as the front runner won the race in 1:12:47.

I got the call from the lead of the sector before mine to inform me that the front runners had just passed him at mile 6 and that there were two right out in the lead.  This was my cue to head down the little sloping footpath just past the water station.  It was quite tight and a runner would not easily be able to overtake along this short section whilst still running along the path.  The path was full of dry leaves, which made the steep path slippy and I was stood at the corner where runners had to make an incredibly tight turn back on themselves (in the picture below) to head to the bottom of the slope where they joined the old railway track for a brief section of trail.  ”Sharp bend to your right HERE, (pointing) down to the bottom and sharp bend back to the left!” was bellowed from my mouth every four or five runners across the span of about an hour.  As the lead bike sped towards me with the first and second placed guys behind he had to come to a quick stop before readjusting his bike back in the other direction.  I feared the runners would run straight into him but luckily he was off again in time.

Northampton Half Marathon Great HoughtonHere is our first club lady runner through, Kelly, who ended up coming in as second lady in just under 87 minutes.  I can’t imagine ever being able to run that fast!

As the runners became more sporadic at coming through my section I grabbed a bin bag with another marshal and we began Operation pick-up-all-cups so that we could pack up as soon as the last runner had been through.

The back bikes indicated that the two ladies walking towards our station were our final runners and so I left the marshals on the station to continue packing up whilst I collected by car the two ladies I’d dropped off at marshal points earlier in the day.

We returned to help pack up, but it didn’t take long at all as there were several of us there by this point so I thanked the volunteers on the station, leant the tables and spare water/gels against the wall and headed over to Delapre, where the finish was held.  Time for a quick breather as the last runners weren’t through yet.Nic in her icecream van

One of our club runners was there with her icecream van.  I love how authentic it was!  Very old fashioned style and her outfit matched the van perfectly!  I thoroughly enjoyed my cappuccino icecream with chocolate sauce and a flake whilst listening to the results and watching the prize giving.

Me with a cappuccino icecreamAnd then it was time to pack up.  Always goes so much quicker when there’s a large crowd.  After an hour of taking down and rolling up the red netting I offered to travel with another marshal to collect road signs from around the course.  There were several areas we couldn’t access with the van so I would rush off, pliers in hand to snip the signs down that were along the track.  I was exhausted by the end and I’m pretty sure I got more than a half marathon of running in myself chasing after all of those signs and jogging back to the van each time!

How early do you like to arrive before a race?  I try and get there at least an hour before I’m due to run unless it’s only a small race and I already have my number.  The latest I have been was when I arrived two minutes past the time the race was due to start as I had been stuck in bad traffic.  I ran through the registration desk with ladies pinning my number on as I legged it up the road to the start line only to find we had a ten minute wait as the guy starting the race had also been stuck in the same traffic jam!  At least I had a chance to get my breath back before the start!

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The Gladiator Games

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I admit I was a little nervous when Sarah from The Gladiator Games emailed me several months ago offering me a place at their first event in Hertfordshire.  Although I’ll give anything a try I haven’t been leaping forward to sign up to any obstacle races and instead rather enviously looked on from afar at those that have.  But I needn’t have worried.  We had the best morning!

Dan and I turned up at Woodhall Estate in Hertfordshire on Saturday morning a little before 9am.  We were in the 9:50am wave so after collecting our race packs and making a toilet stop we still had plenty of time to take some pre-race selfies…

The Gladiator Games - startOh, we looked so clean here!  (That didn’t last for long!)  We spotted some face paints being passed around in the crowd.

The Gladiator Games - startHad to be done!  Clean faces no more!
Five minutes before our wave was due to start we were all summoned into the warmup arena where the Gladiator in charge shouted out instructions resulting in a much more exhilarating warm up than the usual 10k pre race jump around.  We were fist bumping the air, running in a circle avoiding Gladiators and jumping up for a Mexican wave on the start line.  If you did happen to bump into a Gladiator though, they pushed really hard!

The Gladiator Games - warmupAfter our Mexican wave we were sent off into the unknown – up a gradual climbing hill and off into the distance.  The grass was quite long so there was never any chance of a super speedy run.

We were less than 0.5km in when we reached a bottleneck though.  What was up ahead?…We couldn’t see.  But it wasn’t long before we realised what was happening…Every runner, whether entered for the 5k or 10k distance had to enter the water in order to get to the next section of the course.  I hadn’t expected to get wet quite so soon!

The Gladiator Games - water crossing

Some people were actually already swimming in the water by this point.  You can just spot someone to the left of the photo below getting in a bit of breast stroke.  It probably came up to belly-button height on me and so I ploughed through, with my phone held high above my head and firmly wrapped in the ziplock bag I’d grabbed on my way out of the house that morning.
The Gladiator Games - water crossingAfter we had been trudging through the water for 100 metres or so (luckily it wasn’t that cold!) we saw the signs splitting the 5k runners from the 10k entrants underneath a bridge and we continued in the water whilst the 5k runners were allowed to get out.

I took a quick snap of Dan when we scrambled onto the bank.  You can just about make out the tide mark on Dan’s back – not far from his arm pit line!

The Gladiator Games - water crossing

There was a 5k and a 10k option of the course.  Dan and I had both opted for the 10k route, although only discovered earlier in the week through the website that the 5k course held all of the Gladiator obstacles and the first 5k of the 10k would be run on trails through some more ‘natural’ obstacles before joining the 5k entrants to pass through the Gladiators.  I felt a little disappointed when I read this.  I thought it would probably just be like one of my weekend trail runs, – jumping over a few branches on the floor…Once again I was wrong.  It was more than a few little branches we had to ‘jump’!  They were full on mature trees and popped up all the way round the course!

The Gladiator Games - tree climbingThe Gladiator Games - tree climbing

I started to count how many river crossings we took but I’m afraid I lost count at about 10!The Gladiator Games - water crossing

Most of the time the water came up to my bra line / just under my armpits.  It was pretty deep in there!The Gladiator Games

There were also some incredibly tough (but fun!) hills.  I’m fine heading up, but it’s the coming back down after so many other runners that worries me.  Those hills were covered in a kind of peaty soil which got pretty slippy after a few runners had been down.  I probably surged past lots of runners on the uphills, but then held them all up coming back down again!The Gladiator Games - hill climbingThe Gladiator Games - hill climbingLots of the natural obstacles had these fun little ‘motivating’ signs in front of them.The Gladiator Games - Pain is temporary glory is forever signDuring the last water crossing we took before entering the final 5k and the Gladiator zone, once again the water level came up to our armpits but we were also up to our knees in very thick trainer-sucking mud!  This one was slipped into on bums quickly by most and rushed over as quickly as possible to prevent trainer loss!  We were glad of the strategically placed ropes to help pull us out the other side!

The Gladiator zone began with some guys throwing big inflatable balls at us as we sped through their circle.  I darted to the right, and managed to scrape through with just a slight brush to the arm.  Next up, the Travelator.  This was always my favourite part of the TV series ‘Gladiators’.  I think it was because once they reached the top they got to swing through the paper screen to finish.  The Travelator at The Gladiator Games was up a steep slope with buckets of soapy water being thrown down to make it nice and slippery!  I made it to the top without slipping though.The Gladiator Games - Travelator

Our reward for making it to the top was to throw ourselves back down the reverse travelator the other side of the hill!  Dan enjoyed this part so much he took two goes at it!The Gladiator Games - Slide

Both of us rolled off the bottom covered in mud though!  We picked up so much speed on our downhill launch that it resulted in several rolls off the bottom of the mat into the mud!

The Gladiator Games - MuddySome more incredibly steep hills followed, including one where we had to pull ourselves up by ropes tied to the trees at the top.  Once back on the downhill and I was attacked by these two guys at The Gauntlet.The Gladiator Games - The Gauntlet

Next step MUD!  We thought the worst of the mud had been when it came up to our knees with water lapping at our armpits whilst wading through the river.  We were wrong.  VERY wrong!  The next Gladiator up was bopping us on the head with an inflatable to make us jump into a giant pool of thick, smelly and incredibly squelchy mud!
The Gladiator Games - MuddyThe Gladiator Games - Muddy legs

I looked like I was wearing compression socks and Dan looked like he had some full length boots going on!
The Gladiator Games - Muddy
We did get to dip our legs back into the river to wash them off though…
The Gladiator Games - River crossing

This was an incredibly long water stretch and it was the first one that hadn’t really been warm.  There were plenty of twigs and boggy bits on the bottom of the river bed so we had to stay alert at all times.  Especially as I was still holding my phone in a ziplock bag above my head at this point!  As we reached the end of our river wade, some large balls were bounced around a tree above our heads as a ‘Pendulum’ attempting to knock us over in the river.

We scrambled out of the water once more and found ourselves in yet more incredibly thick mud.  With the mud caking our trainers (I would not have been able to tell what colour my trainers were at this point!) we had to run across some planks of wood with another Gladiator attempting to push us off with a foam mat on a stick.  Needless to say I didn’t stay on the plank of wood for very long!  I didn’t end up on my face though (always a bonus!) and the next section saw us back in the water to clean off again.

We now headed back out onto the main field and as we dived into the foam zone we could see the finish in sight.

The Gladiator Games - Foam

Just the small matter of getting through a zone filled with mini trampolines, a crate of balls we had to throw into a container whilst dodging more Gladiators and two Gladiators with foam padded bars blocking our way to go then!  A handful of jelly beans were thrust at me as we approached the last Gladiator-manned zone.  As I approached, the Gladiators snarled “Did you bring some jelly beans to share?” at me.  I responded with “Quite possibly, if you hit me in the right place!” as I was still desperately trying to unstick jelly beans from my teeth and direct them down into my stomach before hurling myself full pelt past the remaining two Gladiators!  Luckily, no-one hit me in the right place so I managed to enjoy all jelly beans before linking hands with Dan and running through the finish!

We persuaded a supporter to take our photo – us still foamy, muddy and definitely looking like we just ran more than 10k!The Gladiator Games - Finish

Time for a quick breather in the car park before getting changed.
The Gladiator Games - Finish

We had been sensible enough to bring changes of clothes with us as well as towels to sit on in the car.  I was due to be a sector lead at Northampton Half marathon the following day and didn’t want to make any of my marshals sit on towels to prevent them from sitting on the mud we had dragged up the day before!
The Gladiator Games - Finish
Our feet were the worst though!  After the first couple of water crossings I had stopped to remove stones from my trainers, but had given up by the time we reached the second half of the race.  Dan hadn’t untied his trainers at all, so had a proper collection on the bottom of his sock at the finish!The Gladiator Games - Muddy footEven though I had stopped and tipped my trainer out several times there was still a mass of stones going on in there by the time I took them off!The Gladiator Games - Muddy shoeDead chuffed with our unexpected medals we proudly displayed them to passers by on the way home.The Gladiator Games - FinishThe Gladiator Games - MedalWith over an hours drive home, an emergency stop at the service station was required for hot food.  We were STARVING after the event and our Saturday morning croissants really didn’t cut it as fuel to get us round!  Luckily Dan did manage to get served whilst sporting a mud splattered face…

Dan in KFC

I did pick up a few cuts and scrapes, although nothing major.  My worst came from sliding quite a way down a slope and my leg getting trapped underneath a branch!  It stung a tad on the water stretches but it didn’t take long for me to block the sting from my mind and get cracking on the next obstacle!

Injury graze from The Gladiator Games

A place at The Gladiator Games would have set you back £42 (or even less had you entered when places were first made available).  I’ve seen several people lately online whinging about the cost of obstacle events and about how much more expensive than road running races they are.  A fortnight ago I paid £48 for one hour of quad biking that I found fairly boring.  For just under 2 hours of fantastic non-stop fun and entertainment Dan paid just £42.  I can genuinely say that we are already looking forward to the next Gladiator Games and can’t wait to see our photos appear on their Facebook page over the next couple of days!  :)

I received a free place in The Gladiator Games 10k in return for an honest review of the event.  We paid for Dan’s entry to the race.

Have you ever taken part in an obstacle race before?

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