The main (and most important) reason for not doing the Marathon des Sables is that I don’t think I can pronounce it properly. The potential embarrassment of this is paralysing.
A secondary (and less significant) reason is that it looks really hard and I’m nowhere near fit enough. This is a minor detail, however.
Also… I’m not keen on running on sand.
I like the idea of running on sand, just not the actual doing of it. This would hold me back somewhat, I do believe.
Furthermore… sunsets and sunrises – I’m a total sucker for them. And in deserts apparently, they are particularly brilliant. So I would end up stopping every five seconds to take a photo and I’d miss the cut-offs as a result.
It has taken me many years of running to reach this conclusion but it was this morning’s run along a Norfolk beach that cemented it in my mind. I’m away for a few days holiday on the east coast (well, about three miles in from the coast) and with the Ashby 20 coming up next month, I figured I really ought to get a few miles in my legs. Now we all know that running on the beach (along with running in the rain/ running in the morning/ running in the dark/ running while listening to ‘Eye of the Tiger’, ‘the Trap’, ‘Chariots of Fire’) instantly makes you hardcore and therefore doubles the training effect*… so I marked out a little route, charged my Garmin and set out my running gear the night before (I can be organised on rare occasions).
I woke before the sun did the next day and I ended up running for 7 or 8 miles. On the journey I …
- Got totally splattered with mud while running a very dark bridleway.
- Reached the beach before sunrise.
- Chased, caught and disposed of some random balloons blowing around on the beach.
- Got a massive nosebleed for no reason!
- Scared a few dog-walkers (due to the nose bleed) who must have thought, “why is it always us that meet the early morning psychos?!”.
- Took far too many pictures…
- Actually realised I had a nose bleed and realised why I was getting those funny looks!
- Noticed my Garmin was actually set to ‘ride’ instead of ‘run’ for the duration – doh!
- Saw some interesting graffiti…
- Generally enjoyed a very pleasant morning run 😊
In other news: My daughter ran her first junior parkrun the other day (this deserves its own blog post another time).
My dad has recovered from his ‘episode’ AND look to be moving closer to us soon.
That wetsuit I optimistically brought with me looks like it might stay dry…
…and worse in black&white…