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Race Recap: Inter Counties XC

 

Typical that when I finally have the TIME to post, my internet starts playing up! Smile with tongue out I’ve been stuck with a patchy internet connection for the past couple of days, and didn’t fancy posting from my iPhone! But thankfully it seems to be fixed now! So here is my race recap from Saturday! Back soon with my What I Ate Wednesday!

 

I woke up on Saturday feeling refreshed after a good week running-wise, sleeping-wise, and nutrition-wise (well, excluding Friday’s cupcake-fest hehe!). The night before, I had my favourite pre-race meal:

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Obviously, eating Smiles means that it’s going to be a good race

 

As I mentioned yesterday, I had fuelling problems again. This time I tried plain oatmeal made with water and a banana, and that didn’t work for me either! But I’ve got a couple more suggestions from a nutritionist to try. The other problem was that my race didn’t start till 2.45pm…and I ate breakfast at 8.30am! By this point I knew what I had eaten wasn’t sticking with me well, so I didn’t want to risk anything else. So I raced feeling nauseous, hungry and slightly low on energy, which is why I really need to work it out so I don’t have to go through this again!

 

Anyway, after a couple of hours in the car en route to the race, we arrived at the course with three hours of waiting in the freezing cold (-9C!) ahead of us. We walked the course, and it was beautiful!

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Beautiful….and hilly.

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The first of many hills, and the easiest one! Easy being relative of course…the last one was INSANE!

 

As we were walking around, absolutely FREEZING, it began to snow. Oh joy. It was all the more joyful when it was time to peel off all my layers (two hoodies and a ski coat…and I was still cold!) and change into my race singlet and shorts. I borrowed a county singlet, and it was really big on me, which didn’t help with keeping me warm! Smile with tongue outIMG_04011

 

At the start line, we were all wearing as many layers as possible, and our team managers were holding bin bags ready for us to strip and throw as the gun went off. As soon as we saw the gun being raised, we stripped down, turned into icicles, and got ready to run. I’ve never been so thankful for hearing that starting shot! We were off!

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I’m pretty sure I am riiiight over the other side of this photo! Compared to my normal shockingly slow reaction times, my start wasn’t too bad!

 

It was the toughest course I have ever run without a doubt. Four massive hills made it a course to remember for sure! The last one was so steep and muddy that we were sliding down it trying to get up! It didn’t help that I hadn’t cleaned out my spikes from the last race so they were already caked in mud and therefore useless on the hills…woops! Cue attractive “I cannot get up this hill” face:

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So pretty.

 

The aim of this race for me was simply to finish in the top eight in my county. If I did that, then I could qualify for the National finals. For the whole race bar the last hill, I was behind a girl from my county that I was convinced was the one I had to beat to qualify (I thought I was in ninth position at the time). My coach was waiting at the top of the last hill, shouting encouragement to me to overtake her, and I just about managed to as we neared the top. But she took the lead back on the downhill, which lead into the final 800m before the finish. As soon as the course levelled out for the last part though, I could see that she had nothing left. So I made a decisive break and took the lead for the final time:

Inter Counties

That elbow on the left hand side is  my rival’s!

 

The official results still aren’t up yet, so I don’t know the details, but I finished 4th in my county, which means that I am through to the National finals!! It was a bit of a shock, considering I thought I was in eighth or ninth position at the time! SO HAPPY!!

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I genuinely did not expect it at all. In fact, on the way there I was thinking up all the excuses I could give and thinking of ways to make myself feel better when I didn’t make it. After I had finished walking the course, I found my coach and freaked out on him. I was scared about the hills (we both know that hills are not my forte…yet!) and was convinced that there was no way I could qualify. I felt like I would not only let myself down, but let him down too. Even with his calming words and advice, I was still having doubts on the start line. But as soon as I started running, I immediately felt at ease. Sure, my stomach was churning and half the race was spent battling severe nausea, but I felt strong and sure and knew that I would give it everything I had, and if that wasn’t enough, then I would be okay with that. Running always makes me feel better Smile

 

I celebrated afterwards with friends, an Indian takeout, and a movie. Refuelling the healthy way obviously Winking smile

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My last two races are both Nationals ones, and I have a fortnight till the first one! I am excited!! Bring it on:)

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27 Responses to Race Recap: Inter Counties XC

  1. OMG OMGOMG YOU GO GIRL! so so proud of you! and love those smiley potatoes!
    Carrie recently posted..Perfect Protein Pancake

  2. You are a rockstar, Emma!! Congrats on not only qualifying but for seriously kicking ass! Smilies all round :)

  3. SO HAPPY FOR YOU! That sounds like an amazing race!! How far do you guys run?! Just curious! But anyways…4th in your county is SO good! And I loved how you overtook that girl right at the end! So awesome!

  4. Congratulations! Imagine how you’ll perform when you finally the perfect breakfast down!
    StoriesAndSweetPotatoes recently posted..Peanut Butter Goji Berry Protein Bars

  5. Congrats!! That’s such a great accomplishment, you must feel great! Good job :)
    Krystie recently posted..Lunch Recap

  6. Wow – congratulations, that’s so awesome :-) I have to admit that I was shivering reading your recap though – singlet and shorts? Brr!
    Congrats again :-)
    Sarah (everydaysapicnic) recently posted..Snow Day From Life

  7. So happy for you girl. I have had oh so plenty (mostly swim recaps) that I have thought I was a lot further behind than I really was…how is that possible…I don’t know ha!

    Anyways-Great job!
    Hollie@lolzthatswim recently posted..A Sneak Peak of 18 Joyous Credit Hours

  8. Congrats Emma! Awesome job! That hill looks pretty darn big :O So stoked that you got through to Nationals! Woohoo! :D All the best for the training leading up to it :) I know you’ll do amazing at those races too! x

  9. Great job on your race! I can imagine it was freezing running in that!
    Lot-O-Choc recently posted..Cadbury’s Philadelphia

  10. Wow congratulations! What a great recap too- very exciting. And I bet it really was totally freezing.
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted..More baking (are you bored of it yet?) and a storm in a teacup

  11. Way to go!! Congrats girl!

    Also, I think smiley potatoes are brilliant!
    Rach recently posted..Apple Cinnamon Doggie Treats

  12. aaaah CONGRATS EMMA!!!!!!!!! That has to be such a great suprise!!! I bet that was the best tasting Indian food you’ve ever eaten lol. I had a feeling you’d qualify actually – you’ve been KILLING IT this season!!! seriously you’ve come so epically far this year….definitely inspiring :)

  13. Congrats!! Good job on the hills. I hate them too!
    Chelsea @ The Nut Butter Runner recently posted..Monday Runday 2

  14. Again-SO CRAZY AND EXCITING! You must be so thrilled!! Sounds like walking the course was a bit scary because you had to see all the hills you were about to have to run up, definitely something I can relate too! Isn’t it great when you think you’re in 8th or 9th but you really are higher up?! So refreshing. So proud and congrats again! You’re gonna KILL it at nationals!
    Lily recently posted..T minus 3.5 hours

  15. Congratulations,Emma! I wish I could be there to cheer for youwhen you have your next race!
    Kat @ a dash of fairydust recently posted..All I need.

  16. AHHH!! Congratulations!!!
    You are going to kick some serious butt!
    Emily recently posted..That’s A Wrap! Now, Let’s Get Random…

  17. Those smiley faces take me back. Great race recap! You did an AWESOME job!!! :d
    Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes recently posted..WIAW…All packed up!

  18. YESSS GIRL YOU ARE EPIC!!! Isn’t it liberating to consciously take the lead? I feel so badass when I do that. You look so badass when you do that! Oh this is so exciting!! I’m so proud!

    As far as nutrition goes – I haven’t nailed it, but I’ve gotten a lot better. I usually have lots of easily digestable snacks leading up to my races. Crackers, bananas, cereal… stuff that will sit okay if I eat too close to the race! Munching helps to calm my nerves and eating helps make sure I’m fueled. It doesn’t work for everyone, but I like it!
    Tara recently posted..WIAW–A Good Vegan Meal (South of the Border Kale Salad)

  19. so amazing!!! You are such an inpsiration, can’t believe how quickly your running has improved you were born to run. so excited for you!!

  20. Congrats on qualifying! Sounds like such an intense race but you definitely rocked it – and an indian takeaway sounds like the perfect way to refuel :) Keep on keeping on, you are seriously such an inspiration.
    Nada (One Arab Vegan) recently posted..WIAW: “Why Vegan?” Edition

  21. You go girl!!!! congrats!!!

  22. GREAT JOB, EMMA! You are such an inspiration. So Proud of you :)
    Karla @ myhighonlife recently posted..A Weekend to Go Down into the Books

  23. CONGRATS, Emma! You did amazing – way to pass all those girls at the end!

  24. Wow I’m so impressed!! 2 Nationals?! You’re awesome. Congrads on taking over your rival!

  25. You need a new singlet emblazoned with a potato smilie and a slogan ‘powered by potatoes’ ;) I used to love smilies when I was little.

    You’re just a superstar, you really are. I’ll put my envy aside in your case because you’re just too lovely not to be genuinely happy for. To perform so well after all of your injuries and stomach problems…’inspiring’ just doesn’t cover it.

    Well done :D

    xxx
    ~Jessica~ recently posted..Can’t Compete

  26. Congratulations!! You are going to ROCK nationals. :)
    Maria @ Beautiful Busy Bee recently posted..Super (Bowl) Sunday

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