#Juneathon 2015 Day 11

And all I needed was a wee twenty minute kip…

Earlier than other posts recently, I’ve done my 5K and am typing away. This evening, I ran back from nearby Stratfield Brake after stopping at the local supermarket again.

I enjoyed the run tonight. At times, my feet came to life as if possessed, dancing underneath me as though they were traversing terrain far more technical and challenging than what was actually set out in front of them. I felt strong and as if I could have conquered anything. It’s a good feeling.

It’s a good feeling but with a 100 miler looming on Saturday, something resembling sense kicked in and told me not to indulge the moment, to not go tearing away with careless abandon. Actually, when the impulse had passed and my head felt like it had stumbled upon some new found semblance of clarity, I thought about the weekend ahead … again.

Initially, I managed to (foolishly) kid myself that this resurgent strength in my legs would be enough to carry me all the way to Eastbourne. All I would need to do would be to hold back the impulse to start too strong, which would eventually burn myself out as it always does. And when I needed it most, the strength in my legs that hadn’t been allowed to surface would carry me off of the South Downs, hurtling into Eastbourne and sprinting around an athletics track.

I thought about this notion and maybe there was some sense to it. This year, I’ve learnt that I have the mental capacity to push myself further even when my body is starting to show signs of tiring. I have endured increasing distances this year while clawing my way back from the jaws of unfitness and an expanding waistline, when a couple of years ago, I would have stopped at the first sign of an excuse to call it “quits”. I think I’ve learned to persevere.

Going back to the notion that maybe my legs have what it takes to (competently) get me to Eastbourne, I thought about how I should start the race. Maybe if I start towards the front of the pack, I’ll get carried along with a fast pace that I won’t be able to sustain but it’ll give me enough momentum to start something. Maybe if I start at the back, I’ll start slow and gather momentum slowly, picking off the field one by one (obviously falling some way short of the win) until I earn my next buckle.

On Twitter last week, I was feeling particularly bolshy after one of my Juneathon 5Ks and stated that I would reach Washington (54 miles) in 10 hours and Eastbourne (100 miles) in 23 hours. This is a relatively bold goal for someone who finished their first 100 miler in 29 hrs 37 mins 10 secs and then started convulsing and finished their second 100 miler in 26 hrs 28 mins 46 secs; however, this isn’t infeasible, it isn’t out of my reach – it’s just a question of holding myself together for that time and for that distance. If the wheels come off, I need to remember that I’ll be happy if I can keep myself moving and finish the race, regardless of the time or place that I finish in.

I have one more run to go tomorrow until I line up in Winchester at 6am on Saturday morning to find out how my weekend unfolds. Whatever happens, it’s going to be fun.

Previous articleDay 11
Next article#Juneathon 2015 Day 12