Jun 27, 2015
I’ve just finished a hilly fartlek session (and for those who don’t know, fartlek is a Swedish word meaning speed play). That’s my third “fast” session this week, which is pretty much the limit for most people, unless you have a desire to get injured. I’ll end up with about 120 km for the week, and I’m going to take it a bit easier next week. This is my ninth week in a row of 100 km or more, so it’s time for a bit of a rest.
The photo below was taken the day I reached Utah and Monument Valley. It’s not far before the state line on the Arizona side. I love running in the desert.
On This Day
Jun 27, 2012
Distance today = 50.90 km; Total distance = 8423.53 km; Location = Hastings, Minnesota – 44 42.941′ N, 92 50.873′ W; Start time = 0901, Finish time = 1702
I headed out of Minneapolis-St Paul this morning – the home of the Minnesota Twins baseball team, the Minnesota Vikings gridiron team, and the setting for the 1970s series The Mary Tyler Moore Show.
I’d like to again thank Sherla and Dave for their unbelievable hospitality. They are such nice people.
I had a bit of a scare this morning when I awoke with a very sore and swollen right foot. I struggled to walk. But, amazingly, once I put on my shoes and started running, I had no pain. And none throughout the day, so things are looking good. But when running around the world, you’re never totally out of the woods. As Bob Dylan said “Don’t speak too soon, for the wheel’s still in spin”. So I’m going to stay vigilant.
Speaking of Bob Dylan, when I was struggling through the floods in Duluth last week, I forgot to mention that Duluth is where Bob Dylan was born and lived till he was six years old.
My new shoes are feeling really good now. I think they just needed to “give a little bit”, so I played them some Supertramp and they responded appropriately. Seriously, though, I have been finding my shoes are getting progressively tighter, and I believe it’s because my feet are actually getting bigger due to the extreme amount of running I’m doing. Not longer, just wider and thicker. I think the bones in my feet are increasing in density and thickness, and the muscles and tendons are getting bigger. This is making it more difficult to fit into my shoes. At least the current shoes appear to have stretched adequately now.
Despite temperatures of 36 C, I felt really quite good as I paralleled the Mississippi River downstream. I’ll be running along the river quite a bit over the next several days. I’m looking forward to it, but not to the high temperatures that are predicted.
Jun 27, 2013
Distance today = 52.05 km; Total distance = 22,206.57 km; Location = Fraser Range, WA (27 km east of) – 32 04.545’ S, 123 04.398′ E; Start time = 0755, Finish time = 1601
Sorry about yesterday’s missing blog, but that’s par for the course in these parts. We are currently on a 150 km strip of road with no phone reception and no internet, and have been completely out of contact since yesterday morning. I only just found out the State of Origin result, and that we have a new Prime Minister.
We’re staying tonight on a sheep station that provides camping and accommodation, and the manager has kindly allowed me to use the farm’s computer to do my work. Unfortunately, there may be other times in the future when you will find no daily report, but it is usually impossible for me to know where this might be ahead of time. The lack of phone reception also means the tracker is not updating at the moment.
The past two days have seen more of the same, with lots of trees and no signs of civilization along the road at all – no towns, no petrol stations, no shops, no houses. The roads are mind-numbingly straight for long stretches, and the traffic is relatively sparse – now down to about one vehicle every three minutes on average.
There was a minor drama today. Carmel has been doing food and drink drops along the course, and I pick these up as I reach the designated locations. This allows her to do various other things during the day, instead of just sitting by the side of the road. It has worked well so far. However, today I reached a spot, only to find that some animal had attacked both the food and drink. Carmel had poured the drink into a zip-lock plastic bag, so that I didn’t have to carry an empty bottle when I’d finished it (I never discard any rubbish, other than in official garbage bins, and the plastic bag can be folded up and placed in my pouch). The animal – and I suspect it was a large bird – had clawed and gnawed through two plastic zip-locks, and had also ripped through the wrapper of a yoghurt-topped muesli bar and consumed the lot. I later found out that a similar thing had happened to a drink Carmel had left a few kilometres back. We might have to put hidden cameras out to catch the culprits.
About the only other excitement for the day was when a brand new Winnebago drove past, the size of a bus, towing a matching trailer that was as big as a caravan. I can only imagine how much that cost. As I said, there’s not much happening along the road.