Then we met up with the rest of the crew, got out the blanket, chairs, tent, food etc and went into full blether and faff mode. I almost forgot that I was there to run, but soon enough the girls race was out of the way and it was time to get warmed up for the 5K. The plan was to run fast but try and stay relaxed and controlled to reduce the risk of injury or strain and I hoped to get round in about 23min (or closer to 22 and beat the mrs if at all possible). I felt it went OK, reasonably steady pace for the first mile or so (slight slow down at the wee hill) and still felt pretty good as I went past all the supporters at about half way, but couldn't find enough extra pace for the last mile or so and finished in 23:26. Slightly slower than I'd have liked but not too bad really.
After the 5K, there was plenty of time for more chat, yelling at kids, and general tomfoolery before the 10K and a bit of supporting. Some great running, great to see so many Stonehaven runners doing well and top performances from Fetchies. Well done to all.
Overall it was a good day out - a good run and great to see so many friends and so many of them beating PBs and having great runs. Unfortunately, the trip home was tedious in the extreme. After the walk to the car park (which took a long time thanks to three pairs of tired wee legs), I was hoping to scoot out through Easter Balmoral and take the hopefully quieter South Deeside Rd, at least as far as Ballater, but for some reason, we were instructed to turn the other way out of the car park and sit in the queue of traffic heading back towards the castle and then out via the main exit and onto the North Deeside Rd which was a solid queue of traffic. Not happy about that at all, but I'm guessing the organisers have some reason for doing it that way.
In any case it was a relief to get home and head out to get some take away beer and curry.
So, the 5K was the short. The long comes next week at the Highland Fling, which will be a completely different kettle of fish. Wish me luck. I think I'll need it.
Some pictures from Balmoral here