Madeira Island Ultra Trail training

They say that a problem shared is a problem halved.

Which is why this week I’ve been showing everyone who would listen, and some that didn’t want to, a selection of elevation charts.

On Sunday I ran a cool, cliff path trail race here in Jersey and found it tough. It reached the highest points in Jersey and in the chart above it is the small grey portion to the bottom left.

The gross dark brown colour chart is the South Downs Way 100 – my longest and I to date hardest race. The gross light brown colour is Ben Nevis, the highest point in the entire UK.

MIUT is in orange.

So basically I’m going up and down Ben Nevis four times in the space of 70 miles and all under a cut off time of 32 hours.

Bricking it doesn’t come close.

It has focussed my mind though. I am proud to say that I am currently four and half days sober and haven’t touched caffeine either. OK so that doesn’t sound much but on this little rock during winter, it’s a big deal.

I’ve upped my daily “flights climbed” goal on Garmin to 100 and although I haven’t always hit it, most days I’ve tripled my elevation gain by taking long routes or going over hills.

Food-wise, hungry as ever but trying to make any snacks or second meals as healthy as possible. Peanut butter, marmite and honey on toast is now a staple at any time, night or day.

Oh, and I’ve been doing all the running too! 28 miles so far this week, over 300 for the year (not month as I said on Instagram) and a big weekend to come.

Deep inside my heart, legs and lungs, the athletic ability to complete MIUT is there. My elevation chart of doom has just brought my thoughts and actions together as they haven’t been so far.

As the other saying goes, “Ultras are 90% mental, the other 10% is in your head”.


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