Monday 24 September 2018

One day one photo - 24: More running in the South Downs

I am just over a month out from a running challenge I have signed myself up for, the Beachy Head Marathon.

Earlier this year I as supposed to run the Paris Marathon. I did all the preparation, and then a couple of days before I as due to go things went wrong. My orthotics that I had sent in to be reposted arrived back to me late, and the podiatrist had messed up the settings so that they were unusable. So I as left without any orthotics and couldn't do the race.

It was very frustrating. I had toyed with doing New York, but bottled out of signing up for fear that because the money would be a lot to lose if something went wrong again. So I plumped for doing something in the UK. Initially I thought of doing a mountain marathon, but in the end I plumped for Beachy Head - which, being in Eastbourne is comparatively local for me.

It consists of running a marathon - 26 miles (or 42 km) but with loads of hills of the South Downs thrown in, meaning 1200m of climbing. That is not something I have done before, and would be a real challenge.

But thankfully, using the fitness from my Paris Marathon training I have been building on that, but just adding loads of hills. Near to me is of course Crystal Palace, but I have also been running around the North Downs. The real hills are done in the South Downs though.

So that's where I went today. Normally I cycle around these chalky hills, but running them really gives a different perspective, and also the time to notice things that you don't necessarily see when you are focused on bike handling and not falling down!

When running along the trails there's a monument near Ditchling Beacon. It's known as the Chattri Memorial, to commemorate Indians who died during the first World War. Many of them were treated in the Royal Pavilion in Brighton, which served as a hospital, and the site of the Chattri Memorial is where the dead soldiers were cremated. The memorial now has Grade II listed status. It looks great in the middle of Downs, though I have to say it does look a bit random.

Today's run went nearer to Trudleigh Hill and Edburton Hill and Devil's Dyke. That was a pretty long run, and by the time I got back to my car at Portslade and Southwick 15 miles later, my legs were like jelly! I like to think it's all miles in the bank, and hopefully it will make me stronger.

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Running along the South Downs

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