Jan 9, 2016
My lower left leg continues to get stronger. In fact, this morning I didn’t detect any issue with it at all. No twinges, no apparent weakness, and I managed 15 km too. Earlier runs of this length always resulted in some sense of fatigue or niggle, but those issues appear to have now dissipated now.
While running today I was reflecting on my recent race in Florida. As I’ve detailed several times, the heat and humidity were extreme and resulted in a performance of 108 km in 12 hours that, on the surface, was below par. But that was, of course, due to the conditions. At least I managed to go further than any others in the race.
Knowing how I was feeling in the early stages, before the oppressive conditions manifested themselves, gives me confidence I’m not slowing too much with the passing years. After the world run, in which my pace was very slow by necessity, I didn’t think I’d have it in me to run a sub 10 hour 100 km again. However, if I was to now focus on a flat 100 km race in cool and dry conditions, I’m pretty sure my time for 100 km would be somewhere between 9 hours and 9 hours 30 minutes. I’d certainly be happy with that.
In contrast to recent photos taken in the early days at the Grand Canyon, Monument Valley and Big Sur, the one below was taken toward the end of the world run. This was near the town of Tatura in Victoria, about two weeks before I finished. The weather was cool, the countryside idyllic, and the array of friends arriving on the road made for very pleasant running.
On This Day
Jan 9, 2012
Distance today = 59.05 km; Total distance = 451.03 km; Location = Oamaru – 45 06′ 19.66″′ S, 170 57′ 20.84″ E; Start time = 0838, Finish time = 1705.
Another day at the office, and if only the whole world could have this sort of office experience on a daily basis. Superb scenery and running conditions. I’m being spoiled, and I’m sure it won’t always be this good throughout the run around the world. I’m going to enjoy it while I can.
The only negative was that I missed a turn in town when I arrived and ran 440 metres which I can’t count in my mileage distance. I have subtracted the 220 metres the Garmin logged before I realised my mistake and turned off the watch. Oh well, it could have been a lot worse. I’m sure I will make many more mistakes and have to discount a lot more distance than that somewhere along the way in this adventure.
That’s the nature of this sort of run. Too many people have cheated in the past when doing ultra runs of this magnitude. It’s my intention to be as squeaky clean as is humanly and technologically possible, and will be only counting distance that qualifies strictly under the rules. I’d rather miss out on a few hundred metres here or a few kilometres there, than know in myself that I counted distance that I shouldn’t have.
A big thank you to the Pen-y-Bryn Lodge in Oamaru for putting us up tonight. It’s a magnificent establishment, and I’d recommend anyone travelling in the region to stay here. Check it out on www.penybryn.co.nz.