The Other 90%: a reference to the common saying that running is 10% physical and 90% mental.
My foot continues to be a pain, both figuratively and literally, and I have been advised to still not go running for the forseeable future (which, I hope, will be around September). This shattered my dreams that I might possibly have a mutant healing factor like Wolverine but hey ho.
After my last post in May, Karen left a comment about the first long run of the C25K program on Week 5 Day 3. The run in question is a 5 minute walking warm-up (standard for all the C25K sessions) followed by a 20 minute run. I emailed her as I was curious as to what it was particularly about that run that she found challenging. Her response was interesting.
I had a dream last night that I was at the start line of the 2013 Lakeland 100 and that I hadn’t trained and wasn’t prepared. I set off anyway and went quite quickly, reasoning that I had nothing to lose and it might be the only time I’d get ahead of Terry Conway. I couldn’t remember the course (an account of being asleep) and then remembered that I hadn’t sorted my PF or ITB issues out and had forgotten my rucksack. I’m honestly surprised I didn’t have one of those “and then I realised I was naked moments too”.
The oddest thing about the dream is that I haven’t entered the race next year. I’m not even doing the 50.
I started writing this post back in August but never got around to posting it, so it’s a bit late. It’s probably for the best as I’ve now got a bit more distance from the race and some more perspective. I’ve moved on from the race – I’ve “done” the Lakeland 100, beaten it, got the medal and the t-shirt and went from a DNF in 2011 to race finisher in 2012 – and I’m focussing on new challenges, new goals. So why write this now? Because I learned a lot about myself and my training and I feel I should share that in case it helps someone else.
The Other 90% is a series of posts referring to the common saying that exercise is 10% physical and 90% mental.
It’s been a while since my last Other 90% post, which prompted Sam to ask “What’s your usual way of dealing with the mental aspect of ultrarunning?”. Sam then went and ran a storming race at the South Downs Way 100, finishing in 2nd place with a time of 17hours and 23 minutes so I think he’s in a far better position to be talking about this than I am. Not only that but I can’t claim to have a “usual” way of dealing with ultrarunning as, while I have some experience with endurance events, I’m relatively inexperienced when it comes to ultramarathons.
Now I find myself with two days to go and I’ve been spending most of the last two weeks with an eye on the goal and what it will take to acheive it. This post is (the last) part of that mental training and may seem a little random but it’s a snapshot of where I’m at right now.
This post marks the first of a new series I’ll be calling The Other 90% in reference to the common saying that exercise is 10% physical and 90% mental.
With the clock ticking away the hours and minutes and there only being five and a half weeks left until the UTLD100, I’ve decided to revisit last years performance and start some mental preparation. After reading my blogpost about what went wrong, I decided to look at the results and my timings. I noticed that the section from Howtown (CP9) to Mardale Head (CP10), where I pulled out, took me 4h17m to complete. The section is a toughie, no doubt about it; at 9.4 miles it’s the second longest section and it’s got the highest ascent with 765m – all on the big climb up Wether Hill. It took me 4 hours and 17 minutes to complete. Ouch!
Out of curiosity, I checked how long it took the 100th place finisher to complete that section (I chose 100th because I arrived at Mardale Head in 101st place). He did it in 3h28m. The chap who I arrived at Dockray with, Philip, completed it in 3h29m, Andy Cole (who I bumped into at Dalemain) did it in 3h35m and Mick Wren completed it in 3h31m. Compared to all these finishers, I took 45-50 minutes longer on the Mardale section. That got me thinking.