Sally very kindly agreed to let me take a short weekend away to fly over to Spain and run a half marathon with a friend in Pamplona.
Pamplona for those that don't know is located just south of the Pyrenees in the Basque Country in Spain. It is famous for the San Fermin festival that takes place every July which includes the running of the bulls through the old streets of the city.
After arriving in the morning and taking in some lunch, a coffee (we resisted the urge foir a glass of the local wine) and registering for the race, and booking a table for dinner we did some leisurely sight seeing of the old town and started to get our bearings of what is an amazingly beautiful old walled city.
Following the traditional late afternoon siesta, we awoke and started preparing for the race. Neither of us had run an evening race before and so working out the proper nutrition and hydration all that day proved a little difficult, especially in the 95 degree heat.
Feeling relaxed and ready to go we headed out to the start line in the main city plaza and proceeded to run 21km's in the warm evening weather through beautiful old streets, parks and attractions and were cheered on by thousands of residents along the whole course.
My training for a 100km ultra in a few weeks has been pretty tough and I've been struggling recently in keeping the motivation going, but after that run my enthusiasm and love for running was back!
After finishing, showering and changing we took in a great meal (some would call it late, but at 11pm the restaurant was only just filling up), and the best regional wine there is.
Getting home the next day, I couldn't help but feeling relaxed, really pleased with the run and thankful for the company and the whole trip in general. I also realized that I hadn't thought about work for 1 second!
So, if you need to find your running mojo again and are looking to get away for a couple of days, then I highly recommend searching out a last minute entry into a race at a town or city you've always wanted to go to!