Tuesday, 29 March 2016

89. Heptathlon

Event: Heptathlon
Date: 13th and 20th March 2016
Location: Colchester Athletics Track 
Cost: Free
Rules: The Heptathlon is a test of strength, skill and endurance with points awarded for the athletes best performance in each event. Day one covers; 100m Hurdles, High Jump, Shot Put and 200m. Day two covers: Long Jump, Javelin and 800m. The scores of each individual event are totalled to give the overall results and leader-board. The men's and women's Heptathlon consist of different events.

The Event:

Olympic Gold Medal, London 2012: Jessica Ennis, UK - 6955 points.
Team Olympics:
100m Hurdles
Sarah: 26.24 - 2 points
Ellie: 45.55 - 0 points
High Jump
Sarah: 0.88 - 58 points
Ellie: 0.76 - 1 point
Shot Put
Sarah: 4.52 - 178 points
Ellie: 4.62 - 185 points
Sarah: 0:50.38 - 0 points
Ellie: - DNS - 0 points
Long Jump
Sarah: 2.10 - 0 points
Ellie: 1.50 - 0 points
Sarah: 9.00 - 88 points 
Ellie: 10.22 - 110 points
Sarah: 4:35.74 - 0 points
Ellie: DNS - 0 points

Total Points
Sarah: 326 points
Ellie: 296 points 

Sarah: I've been looking forward to this one! The chance to return to so many events and give them another go with the added bonus of points up for grabs for your best performance. I really enjoyed the four events on Day One and was so happy to get PBs in each event- beating my times/distances/heights from last time we tried them. Alas I was out of the points on my 200m run, and I could feel my legs get more and more wobbly as I tried to push on. It was all to play for going in to Day Two!
The second day started with Long Jump, but two 'no jumps' left me with just one distance, and that didn't meet the points requirements. A slight technical hitch (not being able to get in to the equipment shed) meant unfortunately we weren't able to do the javelin, so had to use the distances from the last time we did the event all the way back in 2012. It would have been great to give the event another try, and we may try to squeeze another throw in later in the year. So, the final event loomed, and I was going to have to increase my PB by 10 seconds to get in to the points...but my legs didn't get the memo and I was actually slower than last time. Despite a ridiculously low end score, I really enjoyed the Heptathlon; it's been one of my favourites that we've done and I've loved returning to lots of the athletics events. Did someone say 'Decathlon' for a bonus event....?!

Day One: I do not recommend trying four of the Heptathlon with what could be whooping cough*! Despite not being at my best; I really enjoyed the events we did today. High Jump is a real joy as it involves tumbling onto a crash mat and the Shot Put is a nice, Ellie-friendly, static event. By the end of the session though I couldn't feel my lungs or my legs so sat out the 200m. All in all though a great start to one of the most heavy duty events that we are taking on. 
Day Two: With the Victorian Ages illness all but gone it was lovely to get back out on to the track in the bright weather and finish off what we started the week before. We had a very sandy start with the long jump and as Sarah says, used our distances from our first Javelin session to gather points. I suspect we'll persuade Chris to let us loose with those at some point over the summer which would be great. Again, for my own sanity, I sat the running out and became last lap bell-ringer for Sarah and our other Heptathletes. My favourite things about these events has been the crowd work - getting everyone clapping - and looking up the scores and seeing how much of an improvement one would need to make to up your scores. It would be lovely to think that in another 4 years we could get together and do this again!

A big thanks to Chris from Colchester Harriers for setting this one up for us, and being an excellent coach and time-keeper! 

*It was probably at worst a chest infection and best low-level flu but I have been in proximity to someone with whooping cough and I'm allowed to use artistic license! 

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