A Cancelled Race but the Redeeming Hot Tub

First of all, I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas, that Santa was great to you and that you gained at least half a stone from totally-worth-it food!



On Christmas Eve, Emma stayed over and we baked (a lot!) and had some wine, watching films by the fire.

(obviously we didn’t bake the popcorn, but it was too yummy not to post about it)


(while the cinnabons, buckeye brownies, and cake batter krispy treats were baking, Emma lit her first fire!)

Christmas morning was spent at Mum’s, then I drove up north to Kyle’s family’s in the afternoon so I could get two dinners to see them!


(We met up with Matty after dinner for a walk and a festive pub visit. Yes I got strange looks for my jumper and hat. I am not a local.)

On Boxing Day, Kyle and I headed down the road towards Clitheroe for the Ribble Valley 10km. After about 3 hours driving in a storm in the car, we were discussing the race and wanted to check the start time, so I went on their Facebook page:



And we had had no idea! We were psyched to run it! And the forecast looked better and better every day. We were pretty annoyed we hadn’t received any prior warning that it might be cancelled (I’m guessing they would have known it was a possibility when the flooding started?) BUT safety comes first and we can’t go complaining about a 7/8 hour round trip and missing the race when people have lost their homes. Wishing everyone down there a safe and healthy 2016.


(after we found out the news)

(pitstop at House of Bruar to cheer us up!)


We had both been quietly confident we could get PBs, but we can use that aggression for our next race! I was also meant to have a retul bike fit at Planet X, however, after more Googling we made the call that it may have been too dangerous, so we decided to postpone it. Thank you for being so understanding PX!

The good news was that because I am an amazing planner on our return to the house, Keith had already snuck in to set up Kyle’s 30th birthday present…a HOT TUB!! This was meant to be a surprise on our return from Prague, but there were delivery issues so Mum kindly stayed in to receive the order, and Keith agreed to set it up while we were away! They are awesome.


(I think he was excited!)

Speaking of Mum and Keith, they are off to New York this morning to GET MARRIED!!!!!! Many congrats to them and I wish them all the happiness in the world!! ❤

Favourite thing you ate at Christmas?

Best gift you gave/received?

Ever had a race cancelled on you?

Ribble Valley 10k Recap

Kyle’s 2014 main running goal was to break 31 minutes for the 10k (again, not a typo people – he is that fast!)!

For 7 months, until around May time, he was injured. He couldn’t even run for 1 minute. Dollar was his 1st race back in June where he got 2nd in the Scottish hill running champs, qualifying for the Scottish team in the Snowdon International hill race (where he came 9th).


He then got injured again after slipping down Snowdon in the final mile.


SO this only gave him a few months to recover, train his butt off and try and achieve this goal.

At the Stirling 10k, he got 31.10 and was pleased it was a PB, but he was still chasing sub 31. He tried again in Paisley and River Ness, but still couldn’t get it.

His last chance was the Ribble Valley 10k, held on 28th December. This meant his bday (19th December) and Christmas (if you don’t know the date of Christmas you have issues) would have to be semi-sensible for him. He was happy to make this commitment and bookings were made. I tagged along as I wanted to play cheerleader and fancied another 10k (I did Paisley too, as my 1st real 10k but was unhappy with my 5th place time of 38.43, got injured, and wanted to redeem myself for my 2nd 10k). I also predicted he would get a PB so knew champers would be involved – it was a no-brainer that I went along!

Anyway, onto the race…

The road trip was so much fun! We brought semi-healthy snacks and stopped off at the Gretna outlets for some shopping in the sales, and did a run in Kendall.





(Meet Perry – the lucky Platypus. I go cray-cray on long road trips btw…)

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(“Why not run up a hill the day before an important race?”)

Anyway, 5 hours later we arrived our our gorgeous hotel, visited the spa, went for a nice dinner in a cosy Christmassy pub, bought our breakfast for the next day (he had a couple cereal bars sandwiching a banana, and I had 2 crumpets with almond butter and a banana) then had an early night.

Everything went smoothly the following day. Everything ALMOST went smoothly the following day. We woke up early, had our coffee and breakfast, and left in plenty time. The car said -3 degrees and there was ice everywhere. Kyle nearly skidded at a roundabout but his awesome driving meant we didn’t hit anything! We did get a great parking space about a mile from the start line, and we picked up our bibs with no issues.

HOWEVER, the port-a-potty line was MENTAL so I knew I wouldn’t have time for a warmup. We’re talking about a 30 min queue. A question: why do people take so long?!?!! It’s not like they’re nice places to do your business?!?!? And can’t boys go in bushes?!! Anyway, I started doing some mobility exercises, did a couple jumps and BOOM I open my eyes on the ground with my coccyx in AGONY. I had slipped on black ice and hit the ground with a THUD. I refused to cry and was a little angry with myself for not noticing the ice, but I was doing the race no matter what! I found Kyle and told him what happened but I couldn’t get ice or painkillers because they had called us up to the start line. I let him do his thing and we went to different areas at the front of the line. This was slightly difficult considering there were around 1500 starters, but I have good swimmer shoulders to push my way to the front of any line! 😉

The gun went off, my adrenaline kicked in and the pain in my butt (literally) was pretty minimal. It was an undulating course (a couple of painful hills!) but there was no wind and people around at all times which really pushed you on!

One thing I would say is the fact that they closed the roads for the race was great, but they should have checked it better for ice. I slipped a couple of times which did slow me down. Also, after 5k, you go up a hill for a 180 degree turn around some cones. Everyone walked this part as it was so slippery, and the way back down the hill had black ice so I walked for a good 5-10 seconds. Apart from that, I was happy with the course! Oh wait, no I’m not, the final hill with 0.25 to go was a killer!!!

Mile 1: 5.49

Mile 2: 6.05

Mile 3: 5.56

Mile 4: 6.09

Mile 5: 5.58

Mile 6: 6.00

Final 0.24 @ 6.14 (THAT HILL!)

Can you tell it was undulating?! My watch said 37.30 (6.01 average pace) but results said 37.32 – never mind! I was pleased with my 75ish second PB and 9th place!!

AND KYLIE BABEZ GOT HIS SUB31!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He was flying in 7th place in 30.46!!! That is an average of 4.57 PER MILE!!! Bear in mind it was the North England champs so a top 10 placing for both of us was great, and our times were good considering the conditions! Kyle even stayed with Derek Hawkins (Commies runner) for 3k! And NO ONE broke 30!! That shows he was right up there and it certainly wasn’t record breaking conditions!

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(I didn’t pose for the camera this time! Coach Kyle was so proud.)

As soon as I finished, my pain in the butt was back and I had to hobble to the car 😦 We went straight back to the hotel, had a shower and checked out before heading to Leeds. We took the country roads instead of the motorway (I’d say on purpose, but that would be a lie…) which ended up being stunning! And as soon as we got to our hotel, the Champagne was popped!


That went down nicely, as did his the following bottle (his favourite, Asti)

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Our room was ace! It was on the 16th floor so our views were great! We ended up celebrating on our window sill as it was so pretty!

We headed out for dinner and for a few more drinks, before collapsing back in our room at about 9.30pm. Rock ‘n’ Roll! Wow we are getting old….


Well done KYLIE BABEZ!!!!