Thoughts Before Doing Something Stupid – #BGR #GetOutside #PushYourLimits

I watched the dot on the screen move from peak to peak, wandering what the conditions were like underfoot and overhead.  I wandered what would be going through the runner’s head, who in this case was Ricky Lightfoot, an absolute machine of a runner.  The my thoughts turned inwards.

The last days leading up to a challenge seem to be a mixture of thoughts.

“What have I done!  How the hell are you going to get this done in the time you’re supposed to?”

“In sandals?!  No Chance!!”

“Don’t think about the clock that’s ticking.  Just get round”

“How the hell am I going to get round?”

“Need to get some more training in these last few days, and get plenty of sleep”

“No point in training now!  Shouldn’t have broken those ribs or got near frost bite traipsing around in waist deep snow for hours”

“Is that my calf feeling a bit tight?  Is my glute feeling a bit odd?  My knee feels odd”

“There is no way that I’m gonna make it round!?!?!”

“In sandals?!  No Chance!!”

So it starts with negativity and doubt.  Analysing the past few months of running and how the running felt.  The recovery of non-running relating injuries.  Conversations with others about levels of fitness and how to manage the challenge of running for 24 hours or more over some of the toughest terrain in the UK.  How to manage the nutrition.  What to eat, what not to eat, when to eat, how much to eat.  Pacing and pacing strategy.  The most interesting thing is the gap between peoples perception of my fitness and my own perception of my fitness, but always an annoying doubt.

“In sandals?!  No Chance!!”

I have to nail the climbs and get the downhills done as quick as I can.  Use whatever I can for recovery and make sure I’m running within myself, paying attention to what my muscles and body are telling me.

What if I get distracted and end up injured?  What if I fall behind early on by being unfit?  What if one of the support team have to drop out last minute?  What chance do I actually have of completing this thing and what will the failure cost me?

“In sandals?!  No Chance!!”

That seems to be all I need to refocus.  That defiance that drives us all if we let it.  That dark place isn’t a silent pit of dispair, but is a cacophony of voices shouting out challenges.

“In sandals?!  No Chance!!”

Thanks for your words.  They are ammunition when I most need it.  I had the same ammunition during the Summer, the words of an experienced barefoot runner saying that beyond a shadow of a doubt, running long distances barefoot was impossible.  The battle is against the words and not the person.  Many will be thinking the same and part of my brain joins in with the chorus of “No Chance!!” but it wouldn’t be worth pursuing.

Here’s to the external and internal thoughts of “In sandals?!  No Chance!!” 😀



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