Otherwise known as the race I thought was just a race and ended up being similar to the equivalent of a mad dash through the forest and up steep scree terrain.
It all began way back mid week when Yann suggested this race that was happening Sunday the 29th. He was going to be running the 70km course (he really really likes running), and told me about a 9km one I could run if I was interested. Because I do enjoy running, and had promised myself I would be open to everything and say yes to everything this year so as not to miss out on any cool opportunities, I said I'd be down, thus forfeiting my one sleep-in of the week. 9 kilometres isn't too hard..... or so I thought.
|Yann modelling his favourite hat for running, the night before his big race. He got it in Thailand and loves it because nobody has one like it.|
Everyone at the start line was pumped and happy and ready to run. That's something that apparently stays the same no matter what country you're in: the joy and camaraderie of running a race with a big group of strangers who love doing it. It also helps that there was a band there playing peppy French tunes that were bordering on the very cheesy terrain, but mostly just rested on the hilarious and pleasing for tourist Siobhan terrain. Then before you know it the countdown was done and the race had begun. Robert is actually quite a runner and was off booking it right from the start, so I was left content to run my easy pace alongside runners I didn't know. It was awesome. The race started on a paved road, and soon enough we had turned off into a forested area, and were running trails. I personally love that kind of running, so I was having a total blast! Then approximately 5 minutes into the race, there suddenly loomed in front of us this giant, steep, mountain-like face covered in scree. Now I'm just gonna rewind to a day earlier, when Yann told me the race was easy and from what I understood, he'd said there were two "hills." Fast forward to the next day, an hour before the start of the race, and Tanguy tells me the exact same thing. Now we're back in the present, I'm running towards what in my mind looked like a vertical wall of flying scree and scrambling French runners, and to say that I was surprised would honestly be a rather large understatement. My immediate thought was "since when?!?!" and then using my incredible exchange student skills of adapting to situations, I got over my surprise, and proceeded to run.. then slowly jog-walk... then climb using all fours.. up the terrain.
|A photo from Google which very accurately portrays the scramble (so mad at myself for not having my iPod or phone to take photos)|
|photo from Google which very accurately portrays the amount of people scrambling at once|
|photo from Google which very accurately portrays the size of the "hill"|
|Me after my race!|
|Can you spot Canada? (top... below writing... middle....)|
|"CHEERS FROM CANADA! - Siobhan Barry - RYE 2013/14!!!"|
Overall, it was an awesome experience, and despite how I had to get up early and I really didn't want to, it ended up being so so worth it.