Sounds almost perfect OO - are you anywhere near the SW Coastal Path?
Good luck tomorrow Madbark - any target for the 12 hours?
Sorry to hear your news Jools - hope things run smoothly.
After getting stuck at Clapham Junction yesterday evening trying to get home, I thought things couldn't get worse. 12 hours later I realised they could - much, much worse. Watched until about 2am last night and had a sense of doom and then got up at about 6.30am more in hope than expectation. Not even a 4.5 mile through the woods cheered me up in the slightest.
On the bike tomorrow morning, hopefully with elder Lorenzito
Thanks for all the kind words folks - I'm still feeling pretty chuffed with myself and Mrs L has warned me to hold off on thinking what next year's challenge might be!!!
Birch - that's a decent enough 10K the morning after the night before. Glad there were no repeats of the niggle.
Freemers - I'm afraid not; I was a bit of lightweight.
By the time I made it to the hotel I was staying in in the centre of toon, I could only think about lying down and couldn't even make it out of my room in order to get something to eat so just tucked into some of the remaining fodder that I'd had with me - think I managed a flapjack, a Cliff bar, a handful of Minstrels and a cup of tea before crashing out!
Made it back safely yesterday, fortunately in good time to watch younger Lorenzito take another enormous chunk out of his 1500m PB with a 4:10. Safe to say, that if we ran one together I'd be in grave danger of being lapped.
My legs are still feeling somewhat stiff so I suspect that I'll be taking a few days off running - I'm not sure how they'll feel after a 3 hour drive to Norwich first thing tomorrow morning.
Getting to halfway was a relief because I felt that I could sort of start a countdown (35 miles done, 34 to go; 40 miles done, 29 to go etc etc) and I had a good off road stretch through the woods in the bit before the Hexham pit stop at 44 miles.
It started to get really tough mentally and physically a few miles after leaving Hexham and I probably got overtaken by a couple of dozen people - the 55 and 60 mile markers seemed to take an eternity and when the final pitstop came into view at 61 miles I was very relieved and it was good to know that there were just 8 miles left.
I was still adopting a run/walk approach as I got to 65 miles when I decided that more of a DBS approach was needed and I would run all the way to the finish; fortunately it was a nice flat run along the banks of the Tyne and then over the Millennium Bridge. The photos will be the evidence but I think I might have managed to finish pretty strongly (under the circumstances) and even smiled for the camera when I crossed the line. Looking at the splits, I made up 15 positions between the final pit stop and the finish line and ended up finishing in 41st place.
As for the time, I came in in 12:44 - well within the sub-14 target and well clear of sub-13 which was definitely looking in jeopardy for periods of the run.
Badbark - you're right. It was the "Race the Wall" - I'd originally entered because of the challenge of running a 100K race but only when I did the calculations a few weeks ago did I realise it was 111K!
Finishing was the main target but sub-14 hours was at the back of my mind and I would have been over the moon with sub-12 although looking at the results from last year I realised that that would have put me in the top 20, so it was a bit of a pipe dream.
So, how did it go? Firstly it was hard work - about 2/3 was on the road which was undulating rather than hilly, but there were still some bits that it made sense to walk up. The off road part varied between a pretty flat section coming into Newcastle and the Hadrian's Walk footpath around Vindolanda which was definitely NOT flat. Tough going up and equally tough coming down but as you can imagine, the scenery was stunning.
The event itself, while on the pricey side, was very well organised with the opportunity to have a bag taken to the finish and a couple of others delivered to a pit stops along the route. The pit stops themselves were well stocked with drinks (including bitter shandy at one!), chocolate, sweets and sandwiches although apart from a mouthful of a roll at the first pit stop, I stuck with the plan of eating familiar running stuff and staying well clear of pork pies and scotch eggs.
I put my strategy of a walk break every hour into action from the start, although it quickly became one every half hour to be on the safe side. I was starting to feel a bit weary about 20 miles in - not good when you've still got nearly 50 to go so the ultra shuffle became an ultra ultra shuffle.