RW Forum Six – Sub 4.30

Emmy Bug with Flatfooted

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15/02/2013 at 20:20

You flying? Can you wear all your clothes on the plane - kind of waddle on board wearing about six layers at once?

15/02/2013 at 20:56
Hiya Weedy!

I'm going by the Eurostar from Brussels so it'll be quicker but I'm trying to pack lightly... I'm just trying to find the check points for the race on Sunday... It's self navigation and I'm a tad worried about getting lost!

I'll report more on Monday when I get back!
16/02/2013 at 20:15

Good luck Emmy Spice. I was always told that if I got lost, I should find a police officer and ask for their help. Or head in one direction till you find a river, then go downstream till you reach a village or town


17/02/2013 at 15:04

Hi- emmy- have you tried the little flapjack squares they sell in a tub at petrol ststions for your ultra? I cut them in half , and carry them in a  plastic bag, mixed with percy piglets, and just alternate them. The other thing I do is drink frijj chocolte milk-decant about 150 ml into a small bottle for each aid station, and also pringles for when you need ultras are basically a moving picnic!

18/02/2013 at 10:27

Morning all,

@Weedy - I didnt see one police officer the entire day. A lot of dog walkers who said: "ive seen people with those race bibs running in that direction!" Luckily we only got lost a little in Richmond Park!

@Tricialitt - Thank you for that tip. Do you know the brand so that i can have a look the next time? I tried wine gums yesterday and they werent too bad but a little chewy. I've tried homemade flapjacks (with more low GI content) but they keep falling apart.

Just a short version until i get online later. I did it. 53km of hills, mud and navigation. I was find until 27 miles where the wheels came off. Ive sent a message to the girl I ran with yesterday to apologise for my behaviour as i was a complete numpty. Physically I was slower but fine - but mentally - after the marathon I blew up. I cried for the last 3 miles and was getting more and more annoyed that there wasnt more stickers or direction.

I'm in the process of doing a write up today (thank god for holiday!) and then i'll post it online later. If anyone has any questions - please post it here and i'll get round to it later on.

19/02/2013 at 13:00

Round of applause from the audience, well done

Sounds like it was a tough one, but you got through it.

19/02/2013 at 13:18

Thanks Weedy - I think all of them at the moment are feeling a little tough! I went out for a recovery jog this morning and it felt OK.

FF - if you're around - can you please help me work out my training plan for March so that i'm ready for Paris? An idea for which runs I should focus on/length/duration - that kinda thing. I know that I wont have a lot of time - but i'm hoping that the miles in my legs will put me in good stead for March and the focus on Paris.

Here's the race report from Sunday.

London 50km – 17/02/13. A.K.A “I’m sure there’s a downhill somewhere” or “The Railway ultra”

I’m taking it as a good sign that if I sleep badly the night before race day – it’s a good sign. So I got up eventually at 6am and got everything read and checked again my race pack. Having to be self sufficient and navigate was something new for me – but it was a good experience. Using a map and being forced to read where we were going meant that it took your mind off the miles that you were running and the day passed relatively quickly. The sun was shining and it was a lovely day to be out running. It’s such a difference that the sun makes!

I was going out to enjoy the day and from the first few miles I knew that today would not be breaking any records. Instead for the first few miles – it seemed that everything I was doing involved some sort of hill! The entire route followed the capital ring which although seems easy to follow – at some points it was a tad difficult to find the signs – especially when around Richmond (mile 23/24) the colour changed from green to black!

The checkpoints were well stocked and we managed to navigate with little to no errors.  This was one of the great things about running with other people and the girls I ran with (plodding hippo and speedy mel) were great. We double checked each other and when one of us was unsure – there was always someone there to explain/clarify.

We saw a lot of walkers/other runners out and they were really friendly and supportive. The only negative part was running by the canals where some young lads decided to try and insult us.... and I took the bait and scared them off a little. I don’t think they expected a runner to come out with some many expletives in one sentence!

My favourite checkpoint was #3 as we were clapped as we crossed into the checkpoint!  I tried to have 1 gel an hour supplemented by the aid station (sausage rolls, haribo, coke etc). This seemed to work until the final few miles when I started ‘to feel weird’. I wasn’t physically shot – just mentally broken. I was telling Mel, Ruth and our additional friend we found to run on but they wouldn’t leave me (and I’m very grateful for that now). The last few miles I just lost the focus and the mental struggle was a lot harder than I could have imagined. I honestly felt like I was letting them down – they were trying to push forward to get a quicker time but I was just there slowing them down. It was a hard day in that respect.

I cried a lot, stopped myself having an asthma attack, kept running and made it with Mel to cross over the line together. I can’t thank her enough for putting up with me in the last few days. She was so strong (I often commented: she’s got a rocket up her ass today!) and showed what a strong ultra-runner she is. We weren’t the last to cross the line (even though we thought for 10 miles that we were!... Thanks Joe).

We crossed the line at 53km. 3km longer than planned and we’re still not sure why. Was it the detour in Richmond Park? Or was it a tad bit longer than expected? Who’s to know!

Edited: 19/02/2013 at 13:18
19/02/2013 at 13:23


After finishing we ended up having a lovely hot shower and then trying to navigate our way back home. Funnily enough – it was harder than expected!

Overall – the race was another tough day at the office but I’ve learnt from it. I know that I need to look at my recovery strategy more and look more at nutrition.

Most of all – I completed my first ultra. I know that some people do not even class 50km as an ultra – but that’s up to them. For me – those 53km were some of the hardest 11km that I’ve ever run. Will I be back next year? I’m not sure… I need to work on my hill training!

Mel and I at the end

 Navigation 101:


19/02/2013 at 13:29

The days after...

Yesterday - I had a planned appointment with the nutrionist. I've not felt 'right' for a while and wanted to get my intollerances checked out. The last time I went to the doctor they replied: we can see you're intollerant to something - just not what.

Yesterday I found out: White Sugar and Cow's Milk. This isn't as bad as poor Mr. Emmy. He's intollerant to Wheat, Gluten, Pork, Beef, Mushrooms and a host of other things so I should be feeling blessed. But I'm not - i'm a little scared.

What is the main content of Powerbar gels? Sugar.
How do I like my tea? White, no sugar.

Again - this isnt the end of the world but i need to work out a "new" game plan and i'm asking you lovely people that happen to read this. What can I do?

Does anyone know any gels that dont contain refined sugar? Or what can I eat to give me energy? Is it safe to play with things when Paris is 'so close' or should I put up with the current 'issues' until Paris and then detox from the dreaded white stuff? It seems that white sugar (or refined) is in EVERYTHING from white bread to chocolate. Cow's Milk also rears its ugly head in most ingredients (instant porridge, certain breads etc).

If anyone has advice - please shoot it my way

19/02/2013 at 21:35
Emmy - firstly congratulations on keeping on going when you must have felt like stopping. You have a great many strengths and you obviously drew on them.

I know that instant porridge contains milk but the traditional way of making it is with water. Give it a go at home and see how it tastes. I have heard of people taking oats with them to events and just adding water to them and letting them swell. Not quite so instant but it may help.

I mentioned on the Paris thread that DV has been using Hammer products. I did a quick search on sugar free nutrition and someone said that Hammer uses fruit juice as its source of sweetness - would you be ok with fructose?

I've also found this site which says "contains no refined sugar or other HIGH glycemic index sweeteners" - not sure where you'd get it though.
20/02/2013 at 08:28
Thanks Orbutt - this is fantastic! I'm doing some research today but trying to decide what I do for Malta at the weekend (I fly out this evening).
20/02/2013 at 09:50

Wow, woman - you can fly too

20/02/2013 at 09:55

Indeed. It's all part of my superpowers... I just wish it made me faster in races!

20/02/2013 at 10:31

Can't help with the sugar problem I'm afraid. I'm lucky that there's nothing I'm intolerant to. Unless you count people talking with their mouth full - really annoys me that.

And people spitting.

Bad manners altogether come to think of it. There's no need.

What were your split times incidentally? Sounds like they might have gone off the rails a bit towards the end, but did you manage to keep them even at the start?

20/02/2013 at 14:13

Hi all,

I'm just rushing to get everything sorted before flying to Malta. I'll be back online on Tuesday with hopefully more positive results.

Weedy - Here is the breakdown. I'm honestly ashamed by this!


20/02/2013 at 15:15

You've completed an ultra - nothing to be ashamed of at all. Don't be such a div

Have a good time in Malta. Speaking of Malta (allegedly named after the Greek word for honey dontcha know) is honey any use instead of sugar?

20/02/2013 at 15:23
Yep. Pure honey is great. I think I'll need to try some of the local stuff
23/02/2013 at 17:35

Fodd worries:You might be able to use lactose- free milk as a straight milk substitute- it's usually the lactose that causes the trouble.

Ultra running- yup, been there, weird, isn't it? It will be better next time, as you'll have the mental boost of knowing that you CAN do it, even if it doesn't feel like it, and the next marathon will feel SO short, you'll find it much easier.

23/02/2013 at 18:29

Congratulations Emmy!  Well done on completing your first (of many?) ultra! 

23/02/2013 at 18:58
I'm hoping that'll be the case for the marathon in the morning it's really strange how your body works and how much mental games play a part. I've thought a lot about it and have no idea what happened. I don't want to dwell on it too much in case I jinx myself to another bad race.

Malta is really windy so I'm hoping that its blowing in the right direction! At the moment it's 16'c during he day so I'm hoping that my wardrobe choice tomorrow is correct!

I went out for a run on Thursday and a swim yesterday & today and am just trying to eat something before bed and a 5.40am wake up call.

The cut off tomorrow is a sharp 5 hours so I'm hoping that I'll get round in time. They are taking and posting pictures directly to Facebook so if any of you want to be my friend/ are my friend- you can see the humiliation as it goes on in real time!

I've been to a few stores here and they were really helpful. they've given me 2 bars to try that contain agave syrup instead of sugar and another thats a shot of beetroot. All for free! I'll report back with my findings

After talking to some people on the Paris andShades thread I'm going to get a second opinion and see a specialised sports nutritionist, but for tomorrow I'll see how I get on with my new goodies.

Tricialitt - NEXT time?!
Tenjiso - we'll see. I've got the far flung dream of completing a 100 miler one day but it'll be one day in the far future
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