Last weekend, I attended a level one triathlon coaching course. I’ll write about the course later, in a post I’ve provisionally titled: “He who can, tri’s. He who cannot, coaches”. Due to attending the course I missed this year’s Great Scottish Run but it did remind me of some of my previous attempts.
The Great Scottish Run is the first race I entered. I knew a marathon was 26 miles but I mistakenly thought a half marathon was 10 miles. I’d never been good at maths. At university I did an algebra exam. The tutor wrote on it: “This shows no knowledge of algebra whatsoever.”
You can imagine my disappointment when I got to the 10 mile point and I didn’t find the finish line. I quickly realised my mistake and calculated how far I still had to go. “Oh no,” I thought, “I still have 5 miles to go.” I told you I’m not very good at maths.
I did the race again a year later. I took a bus to the start. I put my bus ticket in the pocket of my shorts. Unfortunately the heavens opened and the rain came down. I got so wet, my ticket dissolved! I didn’t have any money so after the race I had to walk four miles home.
You’d think it would be third time lucky but I forgot my trainers and ran my third attempt in leather shoes. I gave in at the eight mile point as it was close to my house and my feet hurt.
Last year, I decided to do the 10k. Luckily the distance is in the title of the race so I knew how far it was to the finish.
The course started with a slog up a hill before flattening out. The course then winds its way through motorway underpasses and ugly streets. The race won’t trouble any “most scenic race” lists. The course is a bit slow as there are numerous pinch points where the sheer number of people force everyone to slow down.
The highlight of the race was watching an old women run alongside her daughter. The daughter was proudly shouting at her mum encouraging and praising her. Repeatedly shouting “you can do it!”
It was so sweet to see them share this special moment across the generations.
It became even better when the mum took one look at the daughter and thanked her by shouting “Why don’t YOU just F&#K OFF!!!”.