I Can’t Run – Days 4 & 5

Before you start…

Get a tea, coffee or ale…

It is an odd place I find myself and me words may be of a rambling nature

Don’t get me wrong…
This is not a moan or wings or even me feeling sorry for myself.

It’s just observations, or more clearly put conclusions as a result of ibservations. 

At some point, running became a part of who I am and I think this is the same for lots of people.  At the same time, taking on something big…

Something that needs the time to train and then to execute, takes over the sense of normal life.  It’s almost as though the curiosity as to why gets in the way of other desires or wants.

But here’s the point of toting these thoughts down…

Starting an adventure such as mine has left me with a sense of sweet melancholy.  Sad that I’m leaving what I love behind but at the same time, joyous that I realise I love the things I do.

I have decided to put the adventure first, and the want to share my love for running on moor and fell with someone aside.  And for what?

For the need to find out more about who I am.  About what my ephemeral existence can achieve, knowing full well that the achievement has little to no value.  Knowing that most will find it difficult to even comprehend what I may achieve or endure.

And here’s the other point…

I choose this path.  The decision was made and every step I have taken was in this direction.  A distinction that should be made between those that are exulted for their incredible feats of endurance and those that endure but make no conscious decision to have to endure.  They endure to survive.  Yet receive no medal for their efforts. 

We should stand tall and reward them with open arms and treat each of them as the heroes they are as they slowly either and pass from our midst.

Now.. Sat listening to the turbulence of the river, I wander how much is this is inspired by my grand mother.  She lives, she has endured more that most but lives as though others (all around her) have endured more than her. 

This adventure is in her honour.  Her ability to embrace pain and survive.  

Babcia… You are a true immortal amongst men an led an inspiration to me more than I have words to express.  I known not how you shoulder your loses but I hope to in some way develop the strength that you radiate. 

Here I make conscious effort to stop…

Ramblings that meander towards self should never be given extended credence.  Instead I sit and think about the choice of other around me to push themselves:

 To endure what most can’t comprehend; and in most cases, be successful at breaking free of the barriers we create for ourselves.  We should all rejoice in this.  It is what we are meant to do.  


I Can’t Run Today – Day 3&4

Just as well, since I’ve got so much to get sorted, and I seem to keep adding things to the list.  

I seem to have become accident prone, dropping my camera in to a puddle deep enough to kill the camera and dropping the hood of my sleeping bag in a suspicious looking puddle!

Today it’s time to head to the Lakes one last time to help out with the Lakeland 50/100 races…  Dressed as the bearded lady?!

Then it’ll be time to drop things into storage and fly.

Stuff is getting serious quickly ūüė≥

I Can’t Run Today – Day 2

What is done is done…

You can’t unmelt cheese.

There’s an odd melancholy to being a lone runner.  We run, we see, we experience but regardless of what we do, the moments are ours.  We can’t share how we perceived our journey in its entirety or even in a way that all understand.

The day has been spent pondering…

The question keeps coming back to me and the more I ponder, the more I realise that the answer is one that is difficult to express.

Why do you run?

I run because…

Here’s the stumbling block.  Why the hell do I run?  

At one point I ran to escape and to change.

I ran to avoid certain poor decision.

I ran because there was nothing else to do.

I ran to explore.

I ran to experience the purity of moving through a landscape. Simple, light and free.

I ran to find out my limits.

I ran to see if I had found my limits.

I run to?
Now I question the relevance of the question ‘why do you run?’

I Can’t Run Today – Day 1

It’s not even been a day and Im already going mad.

I have things to do. ¬†I am doing these things. ¬†I still wouldn’t mind a short run or even a walk would be nice!

I’ve walked around 2 miles max today and now I have to superglue my wounded toe back together.

Best buy some alcohol, find a spot to park up in the #AdventureTaxi and practice the mystical art of doing naff all.

This may just be my biggest challenge ever

Thoughts & Emotions Before The Final Day – #RunE1Trail

Suddenly it’s hit me.  I can’t focus on the screen I type words on…

A watery blur fills my sight and the more I fight it the more it flows.


But what is the purpose of these emotions?

Why is it that faced with what others perceive as an escape and as magical adventure I sit and throw words out into the ether?

There is a deep and unspoken joy in teaching that is lost in the bitterness, the unnecessary tasks and data chasing, the reduction of base values to the machinations of the governmental machine.  There is a deep satisfaction from seeing young children arrive in your presence and leave as young adults.  Cast into the world like a message in the bottle, a message that you aren’t even sure will ever be noticed or read, and it is not done for the thanks but for the love of the act of teaching.


I will miss that joy.  A joy that more should be shouting about…  Not to massage their own teaching ego, but to celebrate and allow learners to appreciate the purity of learning for learnings sake.

Maybe leaving as I have, taking on what I have and sharing the experience as openly and honestly as I can will inspire those that look on to start to treat their fears and the challenges they face, big or small, differently.

I know my reasons for leaving will be distorted so I need to make them coherent, without the use of fancy words or poetic constructs.

I leave to show that fear is not something that should stop us.  The unknown and the chance of failure, small or large, shouldn’t stop us reaching beyond our perceived ability and as teachers, we should lead by example.  If I have taught you and you read these words, then realise that I expect you to challenge yourself more in your final year than you have ever done so in the past.  Not a token gesture, but a full onslaught on the limits you or others have placed on you over the last 4 years.  You all possess what you need within and need to simply reach out and unlock it.  You just need to do a few simple things:

Refuse to believe that you are not able.

Raise your standards higher than you ever have and refuse to let them drop.

Refuse to be ruled by your fears.

Refuse to stop trying.

As always the act of writing steadies the mind and emotions.  I can now focus on what I have left to do before leaving my position as a teacher and hopefully facing the students I have tried to guide through my word and conduct.  It is time to step out of the classroom and try a different way to guide them.


FEAR, DOUBT & CURIOSITY ‚Äď The Reasons Behind #RunE1Trail ‚Äď #GetOutside @TheUltraMag @GetOffTheRopes

It is a simple fact that the unknown and unfamiliar will scare us at some level.

I am filled with fear of this unknown and yet refuse to stop heading for it.

I am filled with doubt of my ability to survive.

Two are voices that is daring me to stop.

The other is daring to go on.


Never satisfied, it pushes you beyond what you know you can achieve, daring you to just take one more step into the unknown.




It plays a cruel¬†game with fear and doubt…

Curiosity is a bastard!

#RunE1Trail Schedule

The schedule is based on an average of 50km per day for the entire route and to make it a shorter list of locations is made up of several 12 day legs, showing the total distance being covered and the number of food stops along the way.

You can track the adventure via BarefootAleks.com

Images all taken from http://www.fernwandern-in-europa.de website

Norway & Sweden


Nordkapp to Pitsusjärvi Р505.5km, 5 potential food stops Р03/08/16 to 14/08/16

Pitsusjärvi to Arasluoktastugorna Р995km, 5 potential food stops Р15/08/16 to 26/08/16

Arasluoktastugorna to Bustadmo Р1503.5km, 6 potential food stops Р27/08/16 to 07/09/16

Bustadmo to Roros – 1983.5km, 7 potential food stops – 08/09/16 to 19/09/16

Röros to Grövelsjön Р2098km, 2 potential food stops (3 day leg) Р20/09/16 to 22/09/16

Grövelsjön to Mockfjärd Р2490km, 10 potential food stops (9 day leg) Р23/9/16 to 01/10/16

Mockfj√§rd¬†to Semesterbyn –¬†3000km, 17 potential food stops – 02/10/16 to 13/10/16

Seemsterbyn to Varberg Р3382km, 13 potential food stops (8 day leg including ferry crossing) Р14/10/16 to 21/10/16


Food and provisions are no longer an issue due to population density


Grenå to Skanderborg Р3503km (4 day leg) Р22/10/16 to 25/10/16

Skanderborg to German border Р3769km, (6 day leg) Р26/10/16 to 01/11/16



Border to Oversee to Eutin Р3985km (6 day leg) Р02/11/16 to 07/10/16

Eutin to Bad Nenndorf Р4504km Р08/10/16 to 19/10/16

Bad Nenndorf to Nassau – 5001km – 20/11/16 to 01/12/16

Nassau to Thurner – 5503km – 02/12/16 to 13/12/16

Thurner to Konstanz Р5696km (5 day leg) Р14/12/16 to 18/12/16



Konstanz to Morcote – 19/12/16 to 29/12/16

Italy & Sicily

Section not fully marked!karte_e1_italien.png

1600km – 30/12/16 to 11/02/16



The #BeerUltra Is Born

2 weeks ago, I said the world needs a beer ultra.  Then I did what I never would have done in the past…

I got people involved so that it would happen.

Then it did on a trial basis…

The result was an awesome race, great atmosphere and the start of something that is going to hit the race calendar in 2017!

Here’s the video of the event made by the talented RunnExplorer


So… How does it work? 

Simple… 50km route made of 2 different 5km loops. A bottle of beer at the start of every loop and then a final beer to finish.  

Penalty laps occur if beer is spilt or contenders vomit.

The kit list was simple… A bottle opener to be carried on the runs (kit for different weather conditions to be kept at the beer checkpoint)

Huge thanks to BeerBods.co.uk, the marshals, the volunteers, Ultra magazine and obviously RunnExplorer ūüôā