I have been thinking about writing a race report for the last two months on my 100m ultra race. However, I am struggling with this one as I can not remember much about the Sinister 7. It all seems a bit of a blur. To be honest, it reminds me of child birth. The pain goes and you can not remember much apart from the odd memory.
Leg 3 was the tough one, and always is. But I only really struggled mentally for the first 10k and then it was ok. I was running with Melissa at that time and we were doing well.I could feel a hot spot on my right foot so at TA 3 I had the lovely help for a medic there who fixed my feet out. I remember saying to her, just duck tape it if you need to. She did look at me strangely.
During leg 4 we experienced a refreshing rain shower. The colours were beautiful and clear. I could feel that I was moving into my second gear by then and still running where I could and walking when necessary. I started to move away form Melissa and go on my own. I knew the next two legs were going to be tough. So I planned to eat more at the TA 4 to give me energy and keep me going through to the end of Leg 5.
Leg 5 and 6 were hard, pzrticlulary through the night; but strangely I enjoyed them both. I recall moving up the mountain on leg 5 where there is 15km of elevation, the cool air as we reached the top and the quite. I remember thinking back to when I ran the race before, and how I struggled heading down the mountain because of a knee issue. This time I felt strong. I devised a plan to walk fast most of leg 6 and then run leg 7. It did not quite turn out like that because by Leg 7 I was feeling my legs. I did what I could and pushed through. Dawn came and I was at one of the last CP on leg 6 chatting to the volunteers. It was stunning seeing the mountains and sun rise above them. It was majestic.
From about 2am I had been thinking all I wanted to do was to see my family at the finish line, and knowing I still had a good 7 hours to go was rather tough. However, I was running for Alex, one of my son’s friends who had a serious accident the previous year and was now confined to a wheel chair. So I was running for him and this helped rationalize my pain and thoughts.
During Leg 7 I was so excited to be so close to finishing. I was just praying that the run to the line would not include the route round the houses that I did in 2013. So when I saw how near I was to finishing I started to run again. The tarmac was hard on my feet and I could see the Sinister 7 finish line. I could see the boys, dog and James. I was there, I had done it.
I do want to thank the race organizers, the amazing volunteers and running friends I saw on the way. Thank you to Karen for massaging my shoulders and Leo for giving me an expresso coffee towards the end of Leg 6. It was my kick up the backside that I needed and I flew from there!
I must admit I felt really good in the race. My training and race plan worked out well. I did not experience nausea at all and I managed to eat the soup, oranges and a cup of coke at the TAs. I felt this time I actually raced and I enjoyed it. So the plan is to get enough points so I can race the Mont Blanc ultra in 2018. Even though I did swear during the race that I would never run another 100m again, it is just like child birth; I can’t really remember much about the process but the feeling at the end is just so good.