Sunday, January 10, 2016

2016 Great Edinburgh XCountry International Challenge

For the third year in a row I made sure that I was watching the Great Edinburgh XC race in Scotland on Saturday morning. Number one, it is a great race to watch during the winter season: number two, they always have a top notch runner racing: and number three, the landscape and course is both beautiful and rugged. I fondly recall Edinburgh from my visit there in 1979. Having watched the two previous editions of this race, I knew that Garret Heath owned the course and I was interested to see how he would do against Mo Farah. I had a strong suspicion that he might just get the victory.  The men's race was exciting and Garret Heath did pull off the upset for his third win in a row. The previous wins were on a shorter course.

Here is a video of the last half of the men's race. You can watch full race replays here

Jae Gruenke at the Balanced Runner has an interesting discussion about the running form of the top athletes at this race and some slow motion video that she recorded. You can check it out here

Here is her video of the top men:

A story from the summer involves Garrett's brother Elliot, who is also a top level runner. I noticed on the ElliptiGO Stava mileage board in August that Elliot was posting some massive and hilly rides on an ElliptiGO (must have been injured) He did a couple of weeks of over 250 miles each in August, if I recall, and may have led for most mileage on an ElliptiGO for those weeks. I was already anticipating doing a 300 mile week and I was checking to see if I could maintain my ElliptiGO mileage lead throughout the week. You never know types of massive rides an athlete might do each week and it is usually on the weekend. I got up over 300 miles and had a good lead, but Elliott wasn't posting so I didn't know if he would hook up his computer at the end of the week and beat me. I ended up with 350 miles for an easy lead. Elliot never posted much mileage that week. He never knew I was competing against him! All that I knew was that if I was GOing 350 miles, I did not want to rate second in total miles! 

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