Here we go again. Tomorrow I’ll be running the Centurion North Downs Way 100. The 100 is a slight misnomer. The course is officially 103 Miles (165.762km!).
In the context of a 100 Mile race, an extra three might not seem like much more. But after 24 hours on your feet with no rest and 3,000 metres of climb, those extra three miles can be the difference between finishing or being cut-off by the time limits.
This will be my second attempt at a 100 Miler. The first was back at the beginning of May, at the Centurion Thames Path 100. I dropped out at mile 60, not because of any physical issue but because my mind wasn’t in it.
So no excuses this time. The weather is looking to be ideal. Around 23c, overcast and with a sprinkling of rain in the afternoon/evening to take the edge off of things.
Naomi will be meeting me at the 50 mile checkpoint and from then on will be attempting to make it via train to each of the following crew points where possible, with my parents joining at some point in the evening.
There’s a 30 hour cut off for this one, although the aim is to bring it in under 24 hours if possible. Failing that, just finishing will be fine.
I can’t really explain why I feel the need to do this, other than it’s there and waiting to be done. The same as with my sub-3 hour marathon attempts. There’s always something to be aimed for, whether it be further or faster.
Here we go again! Tomorrow is the Ultra Challenge Cotswolds Way 100km. I first attempted this race last year and it was my first ever attempt at an ultra marathon. The weather was boiling hot, I wasn’t sufficiently prepared and I dropped out at 94km.
Not this time! I’ve run 24 ultra marathons since then, have plenty of experience of hot weather running (tomorrow is promising to be another scorcher) and I’m much fitter than last year.
I’m dialling down the kit I’m carrying this year. Having never run an ultra marathon before, I turned up at start with a pack stuffed with anything and everything. I now know what I need, what works for me and what’s just unnecessary weight.
I am however carrying poles with me for the first time tomorrow. I’ve not used them in a race before but the course has over 2,500 metres of climb and it will be a good opportunity to test them out in advance of the very hilly Centurion North Downs Way 100 Miles at the beginning of August.