Apr 26, 2017
I ended up with 35 km of running on Monday, and it left me feeling pretty tired yesterday – and today. But that’s not a bad thing. What I’ve done in training since (which included 22 km yesterday, and today will be similar) is to drop back a little on pace and concentrate on maintaining my form. As long as I’m still running an acceptable pace while I’m fatigued, I’m happy. That hopefully means I can do the same in the latter days of the Big Red Run. What I want to avoid in this stage race is a complete capitulation, where I end up falling apart and running (or walking) at a seriously reduced pace.
Tomorrow I’m off early to Perth for work, followed by a similar early start for the return flight on Friday morning. That will limit the amount of running I can do over the next couple of days. But that won’t be a bad thing. I’ve already chalked up nearly 80 km in the first three days of this week, so it won’t be a light week overall.
Below is another photo from the Poncha Pass in Colorado. Although it reaches nearly 10,000 feet in elevation, it’s actually a very gentle climb. I generally found that about all the passes in the Rockies. They aren’t steep. The roads to the peaks might be, but I only ran the passes.
On This Day
Apr 26, 2012
Distance today = 34.57 km; Total distance = 5614.95 km; Location = Colorado Springs, Colorado – 38 50.764′ N, 104 52.063′ W; Start time = 0915, Finish time = 1439
A big downhill section this morning saw me into the outskirts of Colorado Springs before midday. Surprisingly, my legs handled the 2,500 feet drop very well.
Colorado Springs is a mecca for altitude-training athletes, and there are many US and other Olympic athletes training here at the moment.
One of the great pleasures of a run like this is when I reach a town I know nothing about, only to be surprised by its hidden treasures. Today I ran into such a place – Manitou Springs – which is on the outskirts of Colorado Springs as one descends from the Rockies. This town is a must-see for anyone visiting the region.
And right next to Manitou Springs is the Garden of the Gods. Have a look at the photos and video – they’ll do it more justice than my words. In short, it’s a stunning park full of spectacular geological formations, and with Pike’s Peak as a backdrop.
Today has been shorter than normal, as I didn’t feel like running past the hotel and being shuttled back. Occasional shorter days are important, not just from the physical perspective, but from the mental side too. One often hears how the mind and body are interlinked, but this has never been as clear to me as it is on this world run. When one is functioning well, the other tends to follow suit, and vice versa. And it’s vital to give both a rest from time to time. Funny how a 34 km day can do that, when you’re used to 50+ km.
Apr 26, 2013
Distance today = 50.82 km; Total distance = 20,023.98 km; Location = Indija, Serbia (6 km north of) – 45 05.876′ N, 20 02.173′ E; Start time = 0759, Finish time = 1622
If things really do come in threes, then today was all about three 20s. I reached 20,000 km, I passed 20 degrees east of the Greenwich Meridian, and the mighty South Sydney Rabbitohs scored 20 points in their thumping NRL win over arch-rivals, Manly.
I felt much better today, setting out, yet again, under cloudless skies and amid forecasts of temps in the 30s. The road early on was shoulderless, but the afternoon roads were a lot better. As I traversed the city of Novi Sad, I reached the huge milestone of 20,000 km. I vividly recall reaching 10,000 km in Missouri, with Hannah as part of the support team at the time. Now I’ve doubled that.
We have again struck amazing Serbian friendliness. Carmel was given, not one, but two free coffees this morning, first by the barista, Dino, then by his customer friend, Bato. She says they could not have been more friendly. Then this afternoon, while I was stopped for a drink at the car, a man came up and gave us a stainless steel bottle opener key ring, with the Serbian crest on it. He simply said “From Serbia”. He just wanted to give us a gift from his country. Amazing!!!
During the afternoon I struck my first decent hill in more than week. When I reached the top and looked down the other side, I was met with one of the best rural views I’ve seen for a long time. On the vast Danube alluvial plain, the crops just went on and on. Wheat fields of the deepest green, interspersed with canola of an equally brilliant yellow, and brown fields of newly plowed earth, ready for sowing.
A good day was topped off when I received the news of Souths 20-12 win over Manly. The Rabbitohs are now firmly ensconced in second position on the ladder.
Tomorrow we are due to meet up with a crew from Channel 9 in Australia, who will do some filming of my run. Stay tuned for more on this development.