During my short taper runs this week I have been reminiscing on how I have ended up about to run the full WHW race on Saturday. It's strange to look back and I feel I have been in a vortex, unable to escape as I get sucked more and more into the ultra world. It all started in 2009 when chatting to a colleague, proudly telling her how I had done the Edinburgh and Loch Ness marathons. "Marathons? You need to do the Comrades in South Africa, now that's a race for you" she said. Out of that conversation the seed was planted. I'd never heard of an 'ultra' before but a couple of hours spent on Google brought me to Scottish ultras and an entry to the Fling in 2010.
I stayed at the Premier Inn at Bearsden prior to the Fling and a chance encounter would seal my fate in the ultra world. It was late evening and I was sitting in reception when I got chatting to none other than George and Karen. "You should do the Cateran, it's a good all round ultra race" they said. That conversation planted the Cateran in my head which I ran 13 months later.
I came across the WHW race a few times but thought "that's for the real expert runners". The fact you had to have an ultra race history, driving and running support, not to mention running 95 miles in 35 hours put me off. But it wormed it's way into my head, the ultra vortex started spinning faster.
After the 2011 Cateran I lost my way a bit, without a target my running became erratic and sporadic. I needed something to aim for, an exciting challenge, something which would scare me, the WHW!
My decision to run the WHW just happened to be early November, the very month for entry, my fate was sealed.
Now, I want to thank my support in advance for giving up their weekend to help me reach my goal.
Coach and daughter for following me on another ultra adventure.
To my parents who will provide checkpoint support on Saturday.
To my youngest brother (who will run the last section with me) and his partner.
To our friend, a Zoomba instructor (who will run the second last section with me) and her family.
Today was packing day, I think I have packed practically everything I own to do with running.
All I have to do now is sort out food.
Good luck to all the WHW entrants, see you all in Milngavie on Saturday morning.
Tues 3 miles Wed 6 miles Thurs 3 miles Sat 3 miles Sun 3 miles. Weekly total 18 miles.