A month or so ago I signed up to this:
My first 50 miler. Some background – I started running almost five years ago now but not seriously until I went out to Ireland to work 3 years ago, and with nothing to do and knowing nobody, bought a new pair of trainers and started running (and blogging!)
I then started training for triathlon and after my first Olympic distance race decided I needed something to improve my running and keep me doing it over the winter. So I entered Barcelona marathon for March 2015. I realised that I loved the long slow training runs by myself over the winter.
And despite the pain at the end, I loved the marathon!
The next year I signed up with my mum for Brighton Marathon which I ran in April 2016 – again I loved the training (especially a 20 mile run along the seafront in the south of Spain) and the race itself.
While doing those long runs in training I listened to podcasts, and one thing kept coming up – ultra running. More and more, I was hearing about the incredible feats of ultra runners – especially once I started listening to a majority of ultra running specific podcasts! I was getting tempted…… Then my boyfriend applied to a job in the US and I realised I could be home alone for a few years. I told a few people “if James gets the job in the US, I’ll enter an ultra marathon”.
And of course – he did get the job. And so I had to stand by my word and enter an ultra marathon! I picked the NDW for a few reasons:
1) I wanted to run 50 miles – I thought that was a good distance for a first ultra as it is significantly longer than a marathon but 100 miles still seems impossible.
2) the NDW is relatively near to London. There are lots of train stations along the route within an hour of London, meaning I could get down to the trail easily on a weekend for training on it and becoming comfortable on it.
3) it’s also relatively near where my mum lives – meaning she can come and train with me and also that she and the rest of my family can come and crew me.
4) all of the race reviews I’ve read say that it’s a brilliant race!
The race isn’t until next spring so I have a long time to train and Dublin marathon to get through first but I’m excited! Something new, something scary, something to force me out of bed on those dark, cold mornings. And with a long run along the North Downs Way just this past weekend