Properly chicked this time

No excuses, I was properly chicked this time. Covered the same distance as Sarah but a whole 8 minutes slower. For those of you that have not taken in the Endurance Life: CTS Dorset event yet I can tell you now it is damn tough. To those guys that ran the ultra-marathon (Joe Dale and Andrew Finn) or marathon (Guy Holbrow and Sebastian Arroyave) two years ago, I have the utmost respect for you. I ran the 16mile ‘half-marathon’ event three weeks ago. It was definitely the toughest running event I have taken part in so far. I say so far because I have much more challenging events in the calendar for next year including two trail marathons and a trail ultra-marathon.

I have never run a marathon before. The closest I came was a 36km trail running event that Sarah and I did last year called the Preseli Beast in Pembrokeshire. It is a fantastic event should any of you decide you are up for the challenge. I decided to use CTS Dorset as a bit of test event. I wanted to know what I could do with no fuel or water. A sensible approach would have been to run with emergency rations and while I am sensible most of the time, I wasn’t on this occasion. I was doing quite well, as I approached the final aid station I could feel that the gas was running low however. I decided I needed something to get me to the finish. A cup of water and a quarter of a banana seemed to have the opposite effect on me that I had hoped for. All of a sudden, whatever energy I had left in me just drained away completely.

At the top of the hill that had reduced me to a walk I attempted to start running again. My legs weren’t listening, I slowed to a walk again but found myself struggling to walk in a straight line and I had to fight the urge to collapse in a heap in the grass at the side of the trail. I knew Sarah wouldn’t have been far behind as the women’s race leader had just come past me. I was right. As I continued to walk Sarah approached me. She stopped to check if I was OK. My slightly slurred speech suggested otherwise. Thankfully she asked a fellow competitor if he had any nutrition for ‘her friend’. What I love about this kind of event is the camaraderie, this guy unselfishly gave me the very last of his nutrition. Her job done Sarah chirped ‘Do you mind if I carry on? I’m in second place!’. ‘Go for it, I’ll see you at the finish’ I said as I waited for half an energy bar to hit my bloodstream. It took a while, perhaps 20mins before it did hit me and only then could I manage a jog on the easiest of terrain.

I managed to cross the finish line running but only just, thankfully the finish is flat. Sarah had indeed finished second female in the half-marathon. I found out that I had about 2:15 to 2:30 hours of strenuous running (and walking) in me before I would unceremoniously hit the wall. I am better placed to come up with a nutrition and hydration plan for my races next year. Despite the fact I had never felt so awful in a race I still really enjoyed it. It is a beautiful coastline and it was a fantastic sunny winters day with blue skies and only a gentle wind blowing. So I got chicked by my own girlfriend but worse things can happen, I could have been chicked by Hannah again too! See you tonight, Tim (LFTC coach).

4 responses to “Properly chicked this time

  1. Hello,

    Yeah great course, shame I couldn’t attend this year to retain my title, I actually won that race! Andy Finn also raced the ultra distance that year and of the four of us from LFTC that started it was just the two of us that finished.

    Andy and I also did another ultra-marathon this year, 100km race to the stones, epic race!

    Anyway if anyone needs any nutrition advice, I’m yer man. I spent a bit of time in the territorial army so I’m a bit of an expert when it comes to extreme.


  2. I don’t know if anyone remembers a hairy Welsh guy going by the name of Andrew Finn?

    The above post was written by him not me (hence the poor spelling, grammar etc). If your reading this Andrew identity theft is indeed fraud and much of your post is factually incorrect.

    However coinicdentaly I did indeed win the race and completed the famed 100k race to the stones.

    My dietary advice to Andrew Finn- less cheeseburgers

  3. Apologies Andrew. Since skipping the country I am afraid you are no longer in the forefront of my mind! Correction made. I hope all is well. Cheers, Tim (LFTC Coach).

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