Firstly where has the last month gone ? I’ve gone from my fittest to fat in 4 weeks and increased my bulk by nearly half a stone / 6lb. How much ? really !
How you ask ? Easy after Henley I did the following
week 1 – absolutely no exercise or activities, just ate and drank what ever I liked. Plus smiled a lot.
week 2 – slowed down to 2mph as we floated along on a canal boat for a week using it it as transport for a waterways pub crawl to gather more food & drink.
week 3 – did one swim, one ride and one run – easing back in. Plus 2 very physical days of police officer safety training
week 4 – immune system collapsed and got some kind of winter virus/flu lurgy 😦 Finished off week with two more days of police training and a kick in the knee, ouch 😦
So writing this I feel as battered and bruised as a bad piece of old cod. My coach says my body will be grateful for the extended rest period, plus strength and fitness will recover. Started rebuilding process with a trail run today.
Anyway back to the original gasping question – How Much ? and what prompted this outcry
As I have been laid up I have been connected with the world wide web looking for races to fill in my training plan to compliment my big ones – ironman70.3 and ironmanUK.
I have entered local hilly trail runs each month between now and Christmas including two Santa suited scampers and fun obstacle runs. These are between 5k and 12k distances, all include mud, hills and stunning scenery and all less than a tenner with rewards ranging from a mince pie, reindeer burger, hand thrown pottery mug and a couple of shiny medals. Many are to raise money for local causes and I have no issue in theses they are good value and great fun to do.
As my training gets more structured and ramps up I was then looking for races in 2104 including half marathons, cycle sportives, olympic / standard distance triathlons and maybe local 10K’s.
I have done quite a few half marathons and been happy to pay on average £25 to £30 when you get a decent goody bag, t-shirt and medal. Is 2014 the year of lets charge a fortune ?
Some of the big half marathon races such as Reading and Bath are nearly £50 entry fees, Brighton marathon £65, London triathlon £91 this are crazy costs especially as you don’t now get the basic haul & bling with them all. The cycling world hasn’t got too greedy yet apart from a few high profile rides such as London – Surrey Prudential 100mile is charging £48.
British Triathlon and British Cycling as yet don’t have many events listed for 2014, they must all be away on holiday enjoying themselves post 2013 race season. But I expect there to be steep charges as in the popular running races. This year many standard distance triathlons are £75 upwards entry fee. So I will again be looking for local grass routes events.
So with a little more WWW searching I am looking to book a few cheaper, races in new locations for training purposes on top of what ironman has had from me otherwise I’d be broken financially.
So far I have found 2 half marathons – Silverstone and Forest of Dean for less than £20. Silverstone being a fast flat course and as a F1 fan I can name the corners and follow the racing line as I circulate the race track. Forest of Dean is more local and a trail half marathon in a great setting.
I will also roll up for local cycling club sportives & addax rides as they are announced. Then smaller triathlons in local sports centres and the Cotswolds lakes.
The increase in entry costs is also having a knock on effect for charities as they are having to ask for more for their places in events such as marathons and half’s to cover costs and get donations. With increasing numbers entering sport are the organisers getting greedy ? as most events are sell outs or ballot entry so they are guaranteed full races. Maybe this is good for athletes as more events will be introduced to cater for the demand.
So to get good value for money, race experiences it seems to need to have a solid bank account or be prepared to look around the web for alternative and even new inaugural events. Having found alternative half marathons I’m determined to find cycling events and triathlons that wont break the bank.
Any suggestions for small, value for money, great race experience, scenic UK based races ?