Nov 5, 2015

Yesterday I ran 53 km. I didn’t feel particularly good, suffering from very heavy legs right from the start. Regardless, I was pleased with the outcome, averaging 5:40 per km, going through the marathon distance in just under 4 hours, and finishing the final kilometre in 5:10. I also ran it in negative splits. For those unfamiliar with that term, it means the second half was faster than the first. In fact the second half was four minutes faster.

Unusually for a training run, I now have sore quads. A few weeks ago I was running somewhat similar distances, and faster, with no ensuing soreness at all. Now I feel like I’ve just raced the downhills of the City to Surf. Well, it’s not that bad, and I had no trouble with a short run this morning, but it’s intriguing as to why things have changed. I can only put it down to the two weeks of very low mileage. My legs must have lost more condition than I realised.

Today’s world run photo follows on from the photo in the last post. This was the view from our motel room in Monument Valley. The sun had set by this time, but a little earlier the mesas in the background were brilliantly lit. You can imagine what a joy it was to run through that same region the next day.




On This Day


Nov 5, 2012

Distance today = 49.56 km; Total distance = 14,080.41 km; Location = Los Chaletes, Chile – 32 51.457′ S, 70 29.219′ W; Start time = 0935, Finish time = 1712


I’m loving running in Chile. After some early teething problems, I’ve now settled in nicely.

For the past two days, I’ve been ascending very gradually. I’m now just shy of 1000 metres in altitude, and tomorrow I’ll rise another 2000 metres into the Andes. I think it’s a gentle climb during the early part of the day, but will increase in steepness as I get higher. I was thinking of enlisting Michael Palin and going over the Andes by racing frog, but that’s against the rules.

I was lucky to find a cycle path alongside the road during the morning. It went for nearly 10 km. After that, I was forced to run on the shoulder, but it was decent enough. By mid afternoon I’d reached the town of Los Andes, the gateway to the Cristo Redentor Pass. From there, I officially started my climb of the pass, but I’ve only done about 12 km of it so far. Tomorrow I should get to within 10 km of the top, which will be crested on Wednesday.

The part I’ve completed so far reminds me a lot of the lower reaches of the climb of the Col du Tourmalet in the Pyrenees, from Luz St Sauveur. However, this pass is almost twice as high as the Tourmalet. We’re talking serious stuff here, as anyone who has climbed the Tourmalet can imagine.

I wouldn’t be concerned about the climb if I was acclimatized to the altitude. I have received some good tips from fellow world runner, Jesper Olsen, who ran this pass last year, from the opposite direction. He was fine, but he’s also a better runner than me, and he was reasonably acclimatized at the time. We’ll have to see how I go. I’ve run to the top of the Haleakala volcano on Maui three times (a 10,000 feet climb), all without any acclimatization to altitude. Twice I was fine, and the other time I suffered badly. This pass is another 3,000 feet higher again. If I do find myself in trouble, at least I’ll have a great view to ease the pain.