Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Walk! Don't Run...

I've never really bothered with the idea of the taper, although in the week or two prior to a big event I do allow myself to run as I fancy, without routine or regime. Just for the love of it.

This weekend, Martin and I took our annual weekend trip to the Lakes to coincide a) with our wedding anniversary and b) the Keswick Mountain Festival. When we did the trip last year I spent a day running the 50 miles between Ambleside and Keswick, but this year with just a week to go until the LDWA 100 I enjoyed a few shorter runs on the L100 course and longer walks over some high tops. We still managed to cover around 40 miles over the weekend.

We had glorious weather and I was reminded how much I love the summits. When the L100 is over with this year I resolve to focus on the high ground for a while. Without time pressures and having given myself permission to amble along gently I had an opportunity to properly try out my poles which were a great success and will be with me on all major events over the summer.

So, I am now very excited to get going on the 100 this weekend. I know not one inch of the course which runs from Wadebridge on the Cornish coast to Teignmouth on the Devon coast:

Navigation is therefore going to be the biggest challenge for me. I'm not great with a compass and rely far too heavily on my gps, but I am prepared. I have the route description ready, my map is marked and my gps unit(s) charged. The cut off is very generous at 48 hours to finish as this is primarily a walking event, so i just need the mental strength to keep pushing forward. My plan is to take it easy, to run the sections that allow, and to walk those that don't. My goal is to finish.

I've been absorbed in all the organisation and prep this week. I've rigged up a light on my poles to use in conjunction with my headtorch for the night sections and I'm pretty darn chuffed with it - I've used my bike light and attached it using the helmet mount...

I've started organising stuff into 'day 1' and 'drop bag piles', got some emergency rations ready, compulsory kit ticked off, playlists prepared, radio shows recorded, but I just can't decide on what to wear! I don't want to go in full ultra girl kit because I understand that runners are not held in terribly high regard by some militant LDWA members - I'm sure this is a minority of folk. I've never met any, but I've read the forums where some berate the runners who chase their PBs and cover the course as quickly as possible instead of enjoying the navigational aspects and just the joy of participating in the annual highlight of the associations calendar. So I wondered whether to avoid the full compression gear!

I've been watching the YouTube vids of previous LDWA 100 events and these have raised my hopes that I really can finish!

Some photo's of our weekend in the beautiful Lakes this weekend:

...and one thrown in from Saturday night in the sunshine at the Talybont-on-Usk campsite

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