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Sunday June 18 2006 at 20:17 GMT

Seven Hills of Edinburgh After thinking about it for a for years, this morning I got out of bed in time and ran the Seven Hills of Edinburgh Race.

The aim is to go around the seven hills surrounding Edinburgh (Calton, Castle Rock, Corstorphine, Craiglockhart, Braid, Blackford, Arthur's Seat), punching a code on your running number using orienteering clippers. The whole thing is made more interesting due to the lack of formal route. There is a suggested route, but things change each year. This year some gates from the Castle Esplanade were locked, and Edinburgh Uni had welded shut a turnstile from Pollock Halls to the Holyrood Park. A pre-race recce is advised.

Without a doubt climbing Craiglockhart Hill on hands and knees was tough, but scrabbling up wet rock on Arthur's Seat after over two hours of running was scary. You can see the route I took here. My watch is showing that I ran 16.37 miles in 2h 32m, which, despite several wrong turns and having to wait for others to ask where to go, is pretty decent. Next year I'll know what to expect!


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