The last uncertainty in my training for The CCC is (was!) my understanding of how my body would react to sleep deprivation and general lack of energy to run. Matt and Liviu helped me find out exactly what I should expect…
Friday night I went out and drank a lot. It had been a while since I’d had a night like this, my interest and enthusiasm for a night out has definitely wanned. It was 3:30am by the time I managed to get to sleep and before I knew it I was up again at 7am to make my way to Richmond to lead a 12km run with Evossi. As a result, I was pretty damn tired when I left home at 10pm to go and meet Matt and Liviu, whom had both agreed to join me for a little night time adventure.
We got the last train out of London heading to Guildford, from there the plan was to run East through the night until we reached Dorking and the wonderful Box hill. It wasn’t long before I realised how happy I was to have company with me – the trails were pitch black (duh!) and eerie with sounds of the night. The only light we had was that of the head torches. The paranoia would have consumed me if I was out there alone, and that was before we even reached the church with the graveyard (Church of St Martha-on-the-hill). A moment embracing the rope swings in the dark and we carried on!
The night was fairly warm, and in the dense cover of the forest paths we were working up a good swear as we shuffle-danced along the North Down Way, those moments where we reached the high points and crossed the open fields were the opposite and bitterly cold and windy.
I had one moment in the night where I am sure my eyes closed, I don’t know for how long, but the wobbles and stumbles were real. I stopped us for a sit down on a tree log and regained my composure. A cheeky Caffeine Bullet might have helped perk me up and see me straight. Any concerns about falling asleep again were soon lost in the darkness as we later sat with the cows and had a little picnic.
The hours ticked by and we soon ran upon the Denbies Estate. The vineyards opposite Box Hill and our path down (winding through the vineyards in the dark!) to the stepping stones. A quick hop over and a decision as to which loops we’d run before we completed our night and arrived at the train station with a whole 4 minutes to spare before the first train started up.