100Km Part 2
This post is part 2 of my 100km ultra run. it picks up just after the 50km mark.
Its only now it starts to sink in that I am now in uncharted distances for myself and its now the hills. My plan from the start was just to walk the hills and even though I have done a lot of hill work I'm sticking to my plan. It’s a bit slower but walking is still making progress. The bush isn't as pretty as before but the Australia bush in September is always a special place to be. This leg has dragged on a bit. I wasn’t too worried as I knew this was going to be the hardest section and I just had to keep pushing through it.
The bush starts to get denser and the ground is starting to get muddy but we have single trail now. This is the kind of running I like the most! Just weaving through the bush and the kilometers start ticking off quickly again. The 70km check point was a welcome relief, I knew now that the aid stations would be more frequent and with just 30km of running to go I knew I could break it down into smaller parts. The next aid station was at 77km and it was nice seeing my crew a little more often, it just takes your mind off your body and by now the legs are feeling it so every little thing helps.
The sun is starting to set and with luck at this time the course has taken me to the top of some small clear hills. I keep looking around as the light and colour in the clouds is very cool. This is nice as it is another distraction for the mind while the body just keeps shuffling along. I always like to see the sun rise or sun set even without the camera but this is the first time I have seen both in the one run. Another first for the day.
The last aid station was a bit of a blur I just remember wanting to keep moving I was still feeling ok, tired and the body was sore but I felt I had it in me to finish I just had to keep ticking along. At 90km I start to worry about my speed and that its going to be the slowest 10km I have done in a long time! Well since I have been able to run 10km. I don’t know why but it starts to really stress me out! But then I think about the amount of times I have run 10km after already running 90km and I think that it's probably ok to take it easy with this one. The temperature is dropping and getting quite cold now as we are back near the coast. I should put my jacket back on but I decide to just get on with it. I didn’t think about it much at the time but I would regret this later.
The trail feels a lot smaller in the dark again but this time the body is what is holding things up the legs are feeling very heavy, there are aches and pains moving throughout them depending on the trail. If it's up, down or flat is really loading up different areas of the legs. There are some more beach sections to finish the race. It's an experience I have never had before! I can see a faint glow in the distance that’s another runner. I can hear by the sea but when I look in that direction I cannot see it. It's a little disconcerting as I know we have a few parts we have to go up and over between beaches. I see a red arrow with makes me feel so much better as I know I'm still on the right track. The last thing I want to do now is get lost now. Its up and over and back onto the last section of beach. It's only now that its starting to sink in how far I have come today and my running journey (5 to 6 years ago I was wrapped when I did 3km unbroken. A lot of work and training has gone in since then!).
Most of the day it has been quite quiet but now I can start to hear music!! It’s the finish line!!!!! The sand is soft but with a final push it's through the last bit and down the finish shoot. I make sure I go slow and take it all in. Everyone is cheering and there is loads of shouting!!! It's a little overwhelming and I'm feeling confused on what I should be feeling and doing. With a final step I cross the finish line 100km, I make sure I stop my watch, very important, get given my medal and finishers stein. The announcer comments on my last name "Miles" being appropriate for and Ultra runner and that’s when I realise I have done it!!! I'm an ultra-runner
I was hoping to hang around a see my fellow runners finish but very quickly after I sat down I got very cold very quick! I had now put on warmer clothes but it didn’t really help so it was into the car and a hot shower! Should have put that jacket on then I could have enjoyed the finish line festivities properly.
If you had of asked me a few years ago if I could have run 100km in one day I would have laughed at you! Goes to show what you can do when you put your mind to something and a lot of training!!