This was just too good an opportunity to miss! All the lads on the farm – now suddenly calling themselves Team Burbage – running in the Ram Run at Stoneleigh Park! Cameras thrown in the back of the car and off to offer some light heckling…..sorry…. support.
It has to be said that there was a slight, all-pervading sense of panic on arrival. Surrounded by teams of organised runners donning matching lycra and packing energy bars into specially designed running pockets Team Burbage were definitely concerned. Maybe, just maybe, interspersing one pint of beer with one pint of water the previous night in the Saracens Head had not been enough training?
Stephen, who – in fairness – had only found out 12 hours earlier that this ‘little run’ he had agreed to do contained ‘obstacles’ was showing a little more concern.
Why, he was demanding, did the obstacles (in his mind…… bouncy castles and a few old tractor tyres) have names like ‘The Watery Grave’ and ‘The Bridge of Despair’? What was all that about?
And what actually WAS an Protein Bar?
And why were they handing them out at the gate??
What was all that about??
Richard and brother Paul were showing zero concern (or understanding) for the task in hand.
Out on the concourse, spirits were high. Team Crouch (who had been spotted in training, pounding along the fringes of the A45) were also out in force. Confident that, under the watchful eye of their leader and fitness guru, Captain Crouch, they we fully prepared for the task ahead.
And what actually WAS the task ahead??
Well ..to be honest…. yours truly didn’t get to see that much of it. Within 10 minutes of arriving she had been spotted and recognized by one of the photographers on the Media Crew and was out on the concourse in a fluorescent jacket as an Official Photographer!!
However, I can confirm that the Watery Grave was just that and it was lovely to have a prime ‘photographers’ position on the grid to be able to shout words of ‘encouragement’ to your own team as they scrabbled their way through.
But perhaps I shouldn’t have told Kat that the men had been confessing to the resident photographer (who had, it has to be said, noticed the increasingly ‘odd’ smell as the day wore on) that this was their ‘peeing-place’……….
I can also confirm that Stephen now knows the difference between a Protein Bar and a Mars Bar and….. by his fourth attempt at getting over the last ‘bouncy castle’….. was regretting that he had not learnt this lesson earlier in life and possibly eaten less of the latter.
A massive ‘Well Done’ – not just to Team Crouch and Team Burbage – who managed to make it home in one piece (just) but to everyone who competed or competes in these really tough runs. Many guys do it for amazing causes and to raise proper money for really good reasons.
I didn’t go home with the boys. I stayed for the whole event as a, now, official tog.
After two days in the ‘Pits of Despair’ I was petrified, amazed and touched in equal measure:-
1. Petrified by what it was going to cost me to get my kit clean again (this proved to be a not-unfounded fear!)
2 Amazed that people do this for FUN (?!?)
But, 3… most of all touched by the people I met and the stories I heard.
People like Jack, 11 years old and running 100km this year to raise money for Ovarian Cancer Action.
In memory of his Mum.
Even in the Pits of Despair the sun shines through and you realise that this world in which we all live is just full of the most amazing, lovely individuals.
Well done Jack x
(Doing something AMAZING yourself? Why not book a photographer to come along with you?! I travel worldwide – so just drop me a line and tell me what you are up to!)