My Cross Country tips including my reflection on my first season.
*XC - short for Cross Country
Who would have thought that I would be running XC much less completing a whole season?!
When I wanted to get into trail running, XC and being part of a team was never in the plan. But why not?! Well because when I watched XC videos everyone and I mean EVERYONE looked like they were running at 100mph. Honestly, that is probably the main reason why joining a team never crossed my mind.
But with reading and researching lots (I do love to research everything before I make my move), it came to light that actually it wasn't all about speed. There is much more to XC running than you see in photographs.
If you have read my previous blog about joining a team and why representation matters to me then you will know that I will always put myself out there if it means creating a path and a way for others to take part.
Photograph: From Google
With everything I do, I hope to empower women by staying true to myself and also encouraging them to go out and not be scared to be the first. If you don’t see yourself represented in any given field, take it upon yourself to be the one.
My younger self would have been extremely anxious and nervous going to my first race and meeting the team for the first time. But this old self is like, it is what is it and what will be will be. I'll be myself and that is enough. With that said, it was enough.
I completed the following races all of 8km in distance. I mean 8km may not sound a long way but throw in some hills, mud, uneven surfaces, river crossing, ice and a few other things... it certainly made for an interesting race each and everytime.
➡️ Claybury Park
➡️ Welwyn Garden City
➡️ Trent Park
➡️ Middlesex XC Championships at Parliament Hill
A great season from October to March 🙌🏿. Coming back from my knee injury, I used this as part of my training. You are probably thinking 🤔 what?!?. Yes, I used this as part of my training for my ultra on 25th March. The distance was short but with high intensity! Makes for more of an interesting event! That's what we love about trails, right?! 😊
My great takeaways from a wonderful experience:
✨️ Everytime you experience something that forces you to 'handle it' your self esteem is raised considerably - Susan Jeffers
✨️ XC is good for your soul
✨️ XC is the event that you never knew you needed until you experience it
✨️ You need spikes. I wore trail shoes for majority of the races but got to a point where it was a necessity. I reaped the rewards and asked myself why I never got them from the beginning 😕
✨️ Mud is fun! You feel and look like a superhero 🤣
✨️ Hills make us stronger. Embrace it whilst loving to hate them! 😉
✨️ XC is for everyone. Happy to chat, just message me! ☺️
✨️ Most importantly, representation will always matter. I will continue to do what I can so that we are represented and know that there is always a place for us where we want to be.
PS: They didn't arrive looking like this! 🤣
Did I mention that we claimed 1st place Veteran Women's in Division 3!
PS: Veteran is any runner aged 40 and over.
So remember, You are enough!