Wasing Park is a beautiful setting near Aldermaston; acres of woodlands, open green areas and TENTS! Acres of Tents. This can prove a mission when you arrive a little late in the day and all you can see for miles are multiple canvas roofs with the occasional flag or inflatable item denoting a location for a club or individuals who are all pitched up for one reason only; to take part in the most popular endurance event for runners.
Endure 24 once again invades the trails of Wasing Park. I’m pretty sure I had no real plans to return to this event, this will be my third time, and I know at some point it is going to hurt. I know there are hills a plenty, mud (potential mudslides and brown rivers, that’s mud and rain).
On this occasion I’m off first, which turns out to be a blessing in disguise. The gun goes, well it’s bit of a wet fart of a gun, I’m thinking Magnum, no I think it’s a cap gun from my childhood… but anyway it’s gone pop and we are off, slowly but surely.
The Course takes a sharp left then the ascent begins, you climb up through the trees and come out into a blustery open area with lovely views, and a huge church on the right side, but no one saw this apparently, I’m thinking specsavers will make a mint.
It’s warm, very warm, we head into the woods and start to chew up the ground and we soon discover its tougher with the sun out to play, breathing like an over paid phone operator.
The inhaler helps me control the breathing and I start to chase or tuck in behind fellow runners.
The course is very undulating throughout, but there is one particular hill with a nickname, ‘Heartbreak hill’, yes, it’s description is spot on. Once you reach the top, it’s not literally down hill from there, but the work load is broken and then finally after a twist and turn through some trees, roots and some sneaky little dips, so fingers crossed nobody took a trip, literally.
The final section takes you amongst the campers and the spectators, catching the rays as you weave your way through the campsite. The end beckons, I cross the line and locate the next runner after my change over.
24 hours is a long time, a whole day to be precise 🙂 what else would you want to do with a rare weekend off, running, nothing gives me more pleasure than running to exhaustion, sleep deprivation and quality cuisine. When’s next year’s entries open?
A great weekend was had by all, the team all worked together to predict times, looked after by the team captains. Like most, I completed 4 laps of around 4.89 miles, but felt longer at times.
So if you inspired by everyone’s reports or the photos; so grab your running shoes and watch out for next years entry.