Hell On The Humber Reloaded – Helloween Madness

Date: 27th October 2012 Location: Humber Bridge Board,East Yorkshire, England
Weather: cold, windy
Terrain: Tarmac, concrete
Distance: 32 miles
Time: 6 hours

This is the 2nd part of an event organized by Toro.

The 1st part was a event called Hell On The Humber which was a 12hr race on the humber bridge in regular running  kit.

This part was a 6hr race and it was called Helloween On The Humber because it was Halloween so we all dressed up in scary fancy dress.

The structure of the race is pretty simple, you have from 6pm – 12 midnight to cross the bridge as many times as possible in the allotted time.

My journey to the event started as always at kings Cross International where for the first time I was using a company called Megabus (thank you Natalie Killick for the tip)

The standard return train ticket to Hull was nearly £70 with each journey taking around 2 1/2 hours and the Megabus prices was £22 return…BARGIN !!.

The journey was split into 2 parts, first was a 09:15 train ride to East Midlands Park Way then the second part was a coach ride from there to Hull Station.

The whole journey time was around 4 1/2 hours, not bad for £22.

Got to Hull at around 13:30 and went to by some drinks and last min food and then got a train to Hessle which was the nearest station to my accommodation for the night.

The Lodge was on the waterfront and very close to the bridge indeed.

Checked in and sorted out all of my things and relaxed for a while.

I remembered that Lee Sheil’s and his partner Wendy whom were both previous competitors at the HOTH two months previous were staying here too, so we arranged to meet and I got the first peak at what they were both wearing…..Lee – ballerina, Wendy – Wonder woman.

We a a quick catch up and they very kindly offered me a lift to the start, so I had about 30 mins to get my Sh*t together and get all scared up and ready to race.

I was wearing: Pair of 2XU compression tights 2XU compression long sleeved top Morph suit BYB logoed (without the head and feet bits) socks Thermal Neck warmer Newton shoes Gloves (well for the first 13 mile then I lost them) Plastic chains around legs, arms and neck ( for 14 miles before they broke)

We got to the start at 17:00 so I had so time to warm up and get used to the costume.

We had a briefing around 17:30 and had time to go to the loo and do the last min prep.

From the time I woke up on Saturday till 1/2hr  before the start I was eating and drinking because my work week was hard with a lot of late nights and only 7hrs sleep each night, so It was important to carb load.

6pm approached and we’re off !!!!!!!!!!!!!

As always the first section was slightly up hill which takes you to the start of the bridge and past a wind sock which this time was blowing around a lot.

Once on the bridge it’s pretty straight forward to the other side were there is a slight decline and then the turn for the same way back.

Running with chains was a interesting experience in that you don’t have the same freedom of movement as you usually do.

In the first 4 1/2 hours of the race I must have gone to the loo about 5 times which is rare (normally I have this under control).

I must say trying to put a morph suit back on in freezing, windy conditions in not easy !!!

My running was going really well and the chains were ok for the first 14 miles but were stopping me from taking my regular stride length and I was getting a slight pain on the back of the calf muscle.

So I decided to take the chains off and from that point on I felt so much better and was running free.

Throughout the run the happiness of all of the fellow runners was great, there was lot of encouragement and “well done’s” etc.

Many people ask me why I compete in these kind of event and not raise awareness in other way and I say to them

“ The people you meet in these events inspire each other to do better”

As the night continued the weather was getting colder and the temp I think went into Minus 1 or 2 and the wind was not nice either, but I was well wrapped up and didn’t feel any cold apart from in my hands when I lost my gloves but that only lasted for about 30 mins.

The setting for the event is rather unique and we were very lucky to get a full moon so that made it special.

The midnight deadline was approaching and I was just finishing a lap when the organizer said “ you have 45 mins to try and to do other lap or you can stop now”

Guess what I did…. Of course I tried for another lap.

It was going ok until I got half way across the bridge and my quads started to burn and I was getting really hungry, so I was running on empty for the last 2 crossings of the bridge.

I was trying so hard to get there before midnight but it was wasn’t to be

I missed completing 9 laps and finishing 3rd by 3mins 21 sec.

A nice touch fro the organizes was that I got a spot price for having the guts to have a go a completing another lap in the short space of time.

I must say this event is lot of fun, all the people that organize it and the people the compete are really lovely people and I can’t wait to come back here !!!!!!!!

Pace: 4:46 – 7:48 per mile Laps (4 miles) competed in 6hrs: 8 ( 32 miles) Laps (4 miles) completed in 6hr 3min 21 sec: 9 (34 Miles)