A weekend away in Orange was in store this saturday and sunday. I planned to test my knee and run around the local area. I had a brief look at a map and saw there was an obvious loop i could run. I figured it would be 30km at the most. I wrapped up warm as the wind chill had the temperature below freezing. The terrain was rolling hills on bitumen, dirt road and some trail thrown in for good measure. I carried a water bottle and 1 small museli bar and 20 bucks to stock up mid-way.
I was cruising along quite nicely, my knee only being slightly irritating. I probably got a little carried away with the pace as i went though the half marathon mark in 1hr 34 but it was feeling easy. After knocking back my museli bar and the majority of my 500ml worth of water i plodded on. I was beginning to get a little anxious that i may have underestimated the distance. The area was desolate and after running through a freezing creek I was getting a little cold. Soon after the 30km mark I hit a bit of a wall. I was feeling pretty much depleted and the hills were taking it out of me. I was cooling down and the combination of a smaller than average breakfast ( i was a guest and didnt want to appear rude by having my usual mountain of food) and having stopped eating by 6pm the night before ( i would normally have a MASSIVE breakfast prior to going to sleep) meant I had hit the wall. Not a fun experience. I somehow managed to make it home in 3hrs 37 minutes covering just under 43km. Just over 800 metres of elevation which is reasonable. Plenty of walking on the last sections but i was grateful to be able to run at all. It wasnt pretty but im fairly confident that i should be ok for the marathon at the end of the month. Sub 2.50 is off the cards as I dont think my knee will hold up but i'll give anything for a sub 3hr finish.
Having said that, now that im running there is no way that i'll be tapering for the event. I'll no doubt take the day off beforehand but that will be it. I need to start getting in some solid miles in preparation for the Great North Walk in November. A 3 week European beach holiday over August/September isnt going to help matters but may be just the tonic i need to get over my niggling injuries - and I cannot wait!!
78kms for the week which isnt too bad considering I wasnt able to run further than 4km's on Tuesday.
Onwards and upwards!