Saturday, 9 July 2011

First plus 26.2mile run

With time ticking down to my wedding and to the first marathon within my challenge I decided it was time to go on a long run.

To date I have twice tried to run 30miles and twice come up short. once following illness and once it was just beyond me. Today I went out with some new kit to try. Having liaised with the lovely people at Likeys.com I was able to get the kit that was best for me.

So with my raidlight endurance backpack and raidlight front pack strapped in place I put my feet into some new socks. I was most apprehensive of the socks as they are the new Individual toe socks. Putting them on is a little awkward and it is necessary to get them on just right. Once on they felt snug, but, I remained skeptical.

So I picked a route along the roads and got going. Somehow I managed to pick a route in Cambridge with an insane amount of hills!!! Yes in Cambridge!!! The first 10miles were fluid and felt great. The main challenge is to set a pace and accept walking as part of that. About 19miles in I was really regretting not having my ankle support on. it is so easy,when training, to forget about old injuries. What running massive distances does is expose every weakness that an individual has. it becomes so much of a mental game. What I learnt was I need to strengthen my left ankle and my lower back. Apart from this I felt great. This was until I ran out of water and began to get sluggist. the fast flow platypus is amazing but I was consuming more water than I realised. Fortunately a lovely farm shop was selling ice cold water.... Mmmmmmm.... The lady asked me what I was doing and I explained my challenge. She wished me luck and so with fresh water and a bit of adrenaline off I went.

23miles in, my body, was definately complaining but rather than quit I lowered the pace. It got me through it and I knew the downhills were coming. the drive to he downhills and downpour :( got me there. Running for such a long time strips every emotion back, in doing so, leaving the runner exposed an vulnerable. this is why I love to run and why I think it was the perfect challenge to take for St Wilfrids.

At 6hrs 40 I returned home feeling pretty darn brilliant. Not a quick time but a great journey for me and a perfect first step into these distances.

Almost as good was the performance of my kit.

Raidlight endurance backpack. BRILLIANT. Incredibly comfortable with ZERO bounce. Over long distances small things become big problems. this backpack gave me none.

Raidlight front pack (£29.99) worth every penny. Not having to reach into the back of my pack meant I could set the straps and leave it.

My one tip for both products is to have the confidence to pull the straps TIGHT. I found with cushioning he tighter the straps the more comfortable the product! My lower backpain was nothing to do with the kit and the kit seriously reduced this.

3lt Platypus big zip. This was amazing super easy to use and lock onto kit perfectly. It fits well into the raidlight pack. One word of advice is to be aware it is really "superflow" for the water. if you are use to other bladders then sip with caution. 3ltr and I surprised myself when I sipped and NOTHING. Man I never want to die from dehydration.

The Nuun electrolyte kola tablets are brilliant. easy to drink and a noticeable effect.

Sooooo the socks!!!! Well brilliant comfort, zero sore patches and not a single blister after 30miles!!! I am a convert and will be buying several pairs.

This training is very hard, but, I am doing it in memory of Tim and the courage he showed. I am raising money for St Wilfrids hospice and hoping to raise £1500. Please guys if this story is something you are following and you can empathize with the loss of someone to cancer then please give as much as you can. It's easy to donate just go to;

Www.justgiving.com/danpark

St Wilfrids requires £2,950,000 every year in charitable donations to stay open. Then never charge a patient as everyone deserves to die with dignity and not have their last days all about cancer.

Thank you for reading the blog and I hope the kit review was helpful. so come on get running people 1/2mile today and then 1mile the next week. If I can anyone can.

Keep smiling

Dan


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