This weekend it’s the 2016 High Peak Marathon (HPM). A challenging race that starts at 11pm and involves a 42 mile run across very hilly terrain, often covered in deep bog and massive expanses of open featureless moorland that can be exposed to some horrible winter conditions, while runners attempt to navigate the course through the night without getting lost or hypothermic, or both.
I completed it in 2015. It took an agonising 13hrs and 40mins or so. I assumed that with a year to practice and plenty of appreciation of the demands, I could get fitter, stronger and better at navigation in order to re-enter for 2016 and ‘smash it’. PB at the very least.
Then the rest of my team fell by the wayside. Injury, illness, round the world travel……..I was left with what I saw as my next best option – create a new team from scratch.
Yeah – well I didn’t do that. I forgot about it for a bit. Then, when it looked like my only option, I went online and openly begged for the chance to take part.
As long as a team had a drop out or cancellation – I was open to the idea of filling that vacancy.
Then I heard nothing. For months. Entries opened and closed in November, so I assumed that with no word by mid February, that was that. And like a true twonk, I hadn’t ‘wasted my time’ doing any specific training in case I was contacted out of the blue.
Then I was contacted out of the blue. A friendly face and regular at the store had decided to bow out from his team, due to ill health, so I was all of a sudden granted entry.
So this weekend, with only the usual run to/from work and a little bit of recent recce work (one ‘blind date’ with one member of my adoptive team) I head out to attempt a faster time overall on the HPM.
At least this time around I have slightly better kit. I’ve been doing a little bit of strength & conditioning with the Accelerate Performance Centre team and a bit of drill work here or there. Oh and I didn’t give myself frostbite this year – Go me!
Maybe it’ll be easy….
Blog to follow.