This year I blogged about training for Paris Marathon in April. If you’ve seen my blogs, you know it didn’t go to plan, but overall I was happy with my finish.

So what’s been happening since? Well I ran another marathon – Newcastle Way Trail marathon 6 days after Paris which I loved! Then I took part in the Dukeries 40 miler. I guess this post is  mostly about that.

I hadn’t trained for Dukeries. Normally I would have done several back to back runs with a peak of 20 mile on each day. I did no back to backs! But I thought, ‘if I can run a trail marathon after Paris, then I could bumble my way through a 40 miler’.

Then, disaster. I went over on my ankle…again! Only a week or so before Dukeries. I fell into a verge when I car came to close to me. The pain was instant…the fear of another grade 2 sprain was real. I hobbled the 3 mile walk home. Que a few days of rest.

I did a couple of very short, slow runs after resting and all felt OK….not great, but OK. So I decided I would try Dukeries and see how far I could get without breaking my self. My aim was to pull out if any pain came.

So the day arrived, we started early (that early I can’t remember the time) and off I went. I saw a few others i knew there and they went off ahead. Me being close to the back of the pack at the beginning is usual for me so I wasn’t concerned. I took it nice and easy….easier than I would normally do and I was paranoid about every bump in the path. Around 7 miles in I fell ill but thankfully a pit stop eased things. I carried on regardless and chatted to randomers and talked a lot about food. Always a good topic!

Around 20 miles in I started to feel a lot better and thankfully I started to get into the swing of running. I started to find my pace. I started to enjoy it…well partially. I kept plodding, taking it easy, drinking cola, eating ginger biscuits (who knew how good they are!). 30 miles passed and I still felt OK. The ankle felt just as good.

I carried on.

It was only at about 38 miles that I felt aching in my ankle. Now I told myself, I would pull out if that ever happened, but as I was only a few miles from the finish, I decided to carry on. I had a couple of fields to cross so I walked these as the terrain was too uneven for my ankle – I was just too paranoid. But I enjoyed the walking and having a chat with DoE adventurers along the route.

40 miles came and went but eventually I could see the finish in the distance and I mustered up a sprint finish. My minion tried to run with me but I wasn’t sure if I would get disqualified, so I told him to sod off 😀

I completed 40.8 miles in 8.02….in new shoes….and two left toe socks. Talk about winging it!

 

 

Muscle recovery was swift…well I didn’t have any aches to speak of. What I did experience was sleepiness. This alone told me I need some down time. A few days walking and some decent sleep and all was good again. It just goes to show that if you take it easy, you can finish feeling pretty darn good.

 

 

My next adventure?….Completing 50/92 miles of the Two Saints Way with Gold Events and Race to the King. No specific training done but I think if I can run 40 miles with ease, then I might be able do 53 😉

We shall see.

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