Sep 19, 2013

As I begin the process of getting back to normality, one of my upcoming tasks will be the submission of my documentation to the soon to be established World Runners Association. If this documentation is found to be in order (and I have no doubt it will be), then my 622 days will be declared the Fastest Circumnavigation of the Earth on Foot, eclipsing Jesper Olsen’s current record of 662 days.

On the matter of the record, I have stated many times that it was not the motivation for doing my world run. Neither was it Jesper’s motivation, back in 2004/05. We both simply enjoyed the challenge and experiences of the constantly changing landscapes and cultures. In my case, raising funds for Oxfam also rated well in front of the record (BTW, the fund-raising total currently stands at over $56,000). It might sound a little strange, but both Jesper and I “took our time”, ensuring that we enjoyed our experiences. Running around the world as fast as possible was definitely not our focus.

I have no doubt we both could have set much faster times, but we wanted to have time left, during and at the end of each day, to take advantage of our adventure. This included days off. I have no doubt now that, if I was concentrating solely on the record, I could set a much faster time than 622 days. In fact, without the breaks I took, it would have taken me just 525 days this time. It would not take much extra effort to cut that to under 500 days.

For this reason, I consider the record to be quite “soft”, and I expect it to be slashed considerably in coming years. As I said, even I could slash my record considerably, if running around the world as fast as possible was the motivating factor. Someone will, if that is their motivation, but I’d hasten to warn them, they won’t enjoy it if they don’t take time to “stop and smell the roses”. After all, this is what a world run should be about.

I am currently running only about five to seven kilometres per day, but at a much faster pace than I have been running this past twenty months. I am also looking forward to the remaining footy finals. Not only are my Rabbitohs just one win away from their first Grand Final appearance since 1971, but the team I used the to play for, the Warilla Gorillas, are playing in the South Coast Grand Final this Sunday at Nowra Showground, and I will be in attendance. The last time the team played a GF there, which I was at, was in 1978, and they won that one. I hope I haven’t jinxed either the Gorillas or the Rabbitohs by mentioning them – neither has fared well after past mentions in my blogs.

Finally, many people have expressed a sadness that they don’t have the daily update to look forward. If so, there are three other runners you might like to follow – Tony Mangan on www.theworldjog.com, Kevin Carr via hardwayround on Facebook, and Christophe Vissant on http://www.christophevissant.fr/?page_id=58&lang=en. I expect Kevin will be the first to better my new record when he finishes his world run in early 2015.