A recent lecture by ultra athlete, adventurer and physiologist Mark Hines was a treat. Hadnt seen Mark since my pre-Jungle physiology testing in 2009 so it was great to get tips, tricks and advice on training and running in extreme conditions. However it did put me into a bit of a panic about the next race.

The Ultra Trail South West. The enormity of it all suddenly dawned on me with a mighty whoomph as I realised looking around the room at Marathon des Sables veterans, Everest racers, fellow Junglers Jim Binks and Jamie Kellett, people were fit. Fitter than me. Training definitely needs to move up a notch.

 The added panic and confusion was amplified by a call from Channel 4 who were keen to talk to me about a documentary on ‘Midlife Adventurers’. The initial concern from them was I was too young for the programme. At a sprightly 38 years old and having gone through significant change in the last few years both personally, professionally and health – my story didn’t really seem that engaging to delve deeper into. However they do still seem a bit keen so lets see what happens. Not sure I want the nation to see me training in lycra or bursting into tears about life changing moments. NQOC my darlings.

Anyhoo back to the race fear and having spoken also to fellow athlete Ed Vincent from the Amazon 2009, who is also competing in the UTSW along with Mark Hines and the S4C ultra queen of endurance Lowri Morgan. Ed had been reading about 100 mile races and that in reality, the actual halfway mark is 80 miles, not 50 which some people would assume. This is for a number of reasons, the key one is – its frickin tough and your body and brain shuts down. Sounds like fun. Training up a notch and more info to follow.

3 weeks to go ! Suck it up kids. Train Harder.


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