After checking whether the team planned to run or walk this event, and he confirmed they would do the latter, I volunteered to take the spot, paid my share of the entry fee, bought a three-litre Camelbak and a reliable head lamp, and joined the team on their final big three training sessions to get to know my other two team mates.
Having finished three Ironman races and a slew of other triathlons and running races within the past 15 months I thought my fitness level was good enough for walking 100 kilometres on the trails of
Recently I came across a note on my laptop which I wrote shortly after finishing that first ultra footrace. Needless to say, I hadn't quite recovered from the race at the time of writing this and felt a little, errrrm, lost.
As much fun as endurance training and racing is, it's not unusual to feel a little down after completing a big event. You're exhausted and the big race you had been preparing for has come and gone. Now what? The answer, most of the time, is rest and then a fresh exciting new goal.
Six months after walking the 2005 Trailwalker, which left me in more agony than any other race I've done including five Ironmans and 12 marathons, I ran the 45km Six Foot Track in the Blue Mountains, Australia, in a little over six hours. And loved it. (Except perhaps those last 2km down the hill to the finish line, which my quads did not think a good idea whatsoever and simply refused to cooperate.)
As I am 11 days away from running 80km on the trails of Squamish in the 10th edition of the STORMY, I hope (and expect) that my post-race frame of mind will be better than it was after walking that 100km five years ago. One reason is that I am much better prepared with five more years of consistent run training under my belt and another is that I have already planned my next goal, the Bellingham Marathon in September.