Weeks until first ultra: 2
Weight: 95.5kg (15st 3)
Longest run: 20 miles
Mental State: Blind terror
Well. This has come around a little quicker than I had expected. Of course, I am aware that every single day usually contains 24 hours, but I am also, in a much more real way, even more painfully aware that as soon as you’re putting something off, that figure dips to around 8 seconds. Or at least, that’s how I understand tantric sex really works.
I’d better update you anyway. Last week I managed 43 miles, with a longest excursion of 20 miles. So, at least in one respect, I have achieved what I set out to do in May. In two days, I will climax (non-tantrically) with a 23.2-mile jaunt with 3500 foot of incline thrown in, before then doing something that I have read about called “tapering” for the 9 days leading up to the Calderdale ultra. From what I have read, I gather that tapering = crying and eating crisps in the basement for a week. That being the case, I will have therefore come full circle in six months, right back to where I was in January – a teary-stained, crispy blob who smells vaguely of damp – which makes me wonder what the point of the last six months has really been.
What can I say about 2018 in terms of physical health? I don’t spring out of bed in the mornings in a burst of song. I can run 10km without really breaking a sweat yet I still get disconcertingly out of breath if I run up the stairs to the toilet without giving my brain fair warning. I don’t have a stomach that you could use as a skateboard. Ok, my resting heart rate and blood pressure are both lower than they were at the start of the year, but who actually cares about that? I’ve also discovered that excessive running causes significant amounts of shoulder and lower back pain, as well as some industrial-strength chafing around the lower buttocks, inner thighs and inner arms that makes it very difficult to sleep for a couple of nights after a long run. I now run like a deranged adult baby – grimacing and waddling lop-sidedly while wearing padded underwear and enough vaseline to sustain the entire porn industry. I don’t exactly count this as physical progress.
Mentally, though, I do feel significantly less pull-your-bottom-lip-all-the-way-over-the-back-of-your-head-while-screaming-at-a-lamp-post batshit crazy. And I have to admit that I do get a sense of warm, satisfied smuggery after a run that, if I’m not very careful, almost results in the occasional good mood. So, I suppose that it’s been a good thing overall?
Ok, let’s call it evens for the moment; my left buttock has just started bleeding again.
A Wee Note to my Supporters
Before I finish, I’d like to draw your attention to a few things. Firstly, I’ve finalised my event diary for the months leading up to Lakes in a Day.
- Calderdale Ultra – Saturday June 2nd. (30 miles)
- Yorkshire 3 Peaks – Saturday June 30th (24.5 miles)
- Ingleborough Fell Race – Saturday July 21st (6.2 miles)
- The Herriot Way – Saturday July 28th and Sunday July 29th (50 miles)
- Yorkshire 3 Peaks (again) – Saturday August 11th (24.5 miles)
- Lakes in a Day recce – Saturday September 15th and Sunday September 16th (TBC miles)
And then the big day on October 13th (52 miles).
Secondly, I’m not just doing this for laughs. In fact, I haven’t even laughed once. This is all for Yorkshire Cancer Research: https://yorkshirecancerresearch.org.uk/
And this is my justgiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/simon-richardson-tom-bamber
I’m hoping to raise quite a bit, but you never know. Every little helps anyway.
Thanks all xxx