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Warwickshire Cross Country Championships

Winter time is a great opportunity to concentrate on single sport disciplines for us triathletes. Danielle has been enjoying a running focus period in her training plan and is reaping the rewards with her first win in the county cross country championships…

Danielle Stewart Warwick Cross Country Champs

At the beginning of January, the Warwickshire Cross Country Championships took place at Solihull 6th Form College. I have run this race at other venues a couple of times, but in both cases I was coming back after long-term injuries. This year is the first time I have been able to race with a little training behind me.

This week had been a tough week in terms of run training as I had raced only 5 days before; consequently my legs had been feeling tired all week so my expectations were at a conservative level. After a day off training on Friday, my legs were starting to feel a little better, and the nice thing about being a triathlete in a field of specialist runners is that the pressure is off.

The unseasonably mild weather meant that it was relatively warm for a cross country race in January, but unfortunately the winds didn’t seem to hold back. The course was undulating and muddy and weaved through woodland as well as across rough, exposed terrain with a couple of ditches for extra fun! My kind of course! After the gun went on the uphill start, I pushed hard from the beginning and soon found myself out in front on my own. This has never happened to me in a cross country before! I wasn’t sure whether I had gone too hard too early. I soon realized that I felt good and carried on regardless right through to the finish line! It was my first ever win at a cross country race and it was the Warwickshire County Championships! To say I was pleased would be an understatement!

A highlight of the day for me was being told by my run club coach after the event that somebody thought I hadn’t realized that the course was 2 laps and that maybe someone from my running club should tell me to slow down!

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