My running carrot

I just finished reading The Way of the Runner: A Journey into the Fabled World of Japanese Running by English journalist Adharanand Finn.

He travels to Japan and visits a monastery where monks run a thousand marathons in a thousand days in search of spiritual enlightenment; and trains with university and corporate teams who compete in the lucrative and prestigious ekiden - a long distance run covered by a team rather than an individual.

He surmises that the team environment of the ekiden encourages competitors to beyond what they could as an individual, and vows to test this theory. But...

The "consolation" prize

My goal for the last couple of years has been to qualify for the UTMB.

It took me a while to out myself on this goal and when I did, I admitted to being fairly fearful about it. There was a good reason for that. It was a lofty one and in the end, it turned out I'd bitten off more than I could chew. I failed to finish my final qualifying race, so came up short.

I've been awarded a consolation prize though.

2015 goals... 2016 goals... it's all the same to me.

It's that time of the year when all good athletes set their physical goals for the year.

I could just repost my "Goals for 2015" post as "Goals for 20156". I didn't achieve my main running goal last year so it's still good to go.

But it seems I didn't write a post about my goals last year. There are probably two reasons for this.

Mt Gambier parkrun - #parkruntourist

I'm a fan of being a parkrun tourist and this latest parkrun day I was in Mount Gambier.

It was a small gathering of just 62 runners and in true parkrun style, there was good comraderie at the start.  Which, I might add, is a permanent fixture at Blue Lake in Mount Gambier, South Australia.

Ashgrove parkrun - Accidental Historian

Today I ran Ashgrove parkrun. It was my first 5k run for months and it felt good to run all the way, and finish just a few seconds behind the 35 minute pacer from the Ashgrove Rangers.

The parkrun is based at the Ashgrove Sports Grounds and utilises the Enoggera Creek Bikepath. I haven't run along this bikeway very much - but I've run around Enoggera Reservoir a few times... so there was a nice synergy for a comeback run.

I noticed plaques along the bikeway during the run so when I walked back to my car I took a closer look.

Digesting GNW100

If you want a blow by blow of how my attempt at the Great North Walk 100s (GNW100s) went down, read my previous blog post. It's long but worth it (I might be biased).

This post is a little more reflective, but most importantly answers questions I've been most frequently asked about my experience at the Great North Walk 100s.

Chewed up and spat out

In the week leading up to the Great North Walk 100s I read this race preview that served as a warning of how this run wanted to treat me.

From the time that I entered, every time I told someone who knew of this event of my goal to conquer the GNW100 miler, they looked impressed. I can see now that they were impressed because they knew that the marketing of "Australia's toughest trail races" isn't just marketing. It's fact, evidenced by the imposing the drop out rate.

This year, by my calculations*, only 53% of the field finished the distance they entered. I am beyond disappointed that I was not one of this 53%.

I'm not known for my DNFs... so what happened this time?