Someone once said, that if you stop challenging yourself you stop growing? Who knows? Two years ago, enticed by the advertising as the 'World's Toughest Mountain Race', I thought I'd throw my hat into the ring. I deferred last year as it was giving me sleepless nights. Like a year is going to make any difference? I've had more than a few sleepless nights. Anxiety levels have been through the roof. For the last 12 months, there's been a genuine fear that I simply couldn't do it. I've told so many people and I just can't back out again, besides it is a little too late now, especially as it begins at 6am tomorrow.
Currently, I'm sitting in the Britannia Grand Hotel in Llandudno, listening to the most drab 'Bingo Caller' in Wales, her dulcet tones are now monotonising Wales' Easiest Pub Quiz; which super hero has an assistant called Robin! Honestly, I kid you not.
Tomorrow the Dragon's Back Race begins. Since, January this year I wrote a little saying on my kitchen whiteboard in the hope of inspiring and encouraging me to do more training, I've rubbed it off now.
At the start line I've got to believe I can start and finish each day. There's a few things that might not be going in my favour though, in no particular order
The weather is not due to be great, I personally hate running in the wind
I'm not a fan of heights
I'm not a great map reader (the event is not waymarked)
Training has not exactly gone to plan (please don't say what training, I already feel like some conspicuous guilty imposter.
Some things in my favour though:
I lost my car keys earlier and found them, without a fuss or stressing
I'm currently feeling relaxed
I just won my first ever running event with Kong Running in my age category MV50 (not sure what it stands for (muscular vest 50inch? my vehicle 5.0?) I can't believe it, think it was only because I entered and finished three fell races they organised but don't tell anyone
I'm feeling chipper now I'm here and I'm determined to enjoy it.
I've got experience of multi-day events, you remember, one step at a time, box to box and all that
I'm daft enough to just keep going even if it hurts a little
Will it be enough though, let's see if we can get through day 1 tomorrow?
I'm afraid this is perhaps the most simplistic and minimal effort blog post I've ever done but I feel compelled to try and diarise whatever happens. In my dry bag I've got a little writing pad and hopefully I can jot some notes in it and maybe publish some things in a week or two's time. Today, I found out what a dry bag is for! Still don't know whether I've packed it properly though, or whether what I've prepared is right.
If you are interested in the naive, hopeful and ambitious attempt at putting myself through a little pain in an effort to raise more funds for Brathay Trust, please feel free to donate through the Brathay Trust link on my Just Giving page and if that whets your appetite further then you could always send yourself to sleep through dot watching, or send me a dragon mail, wish me luck or as the Welsh say
Dot watch here if you are interested. I'm dot number 62.
By the way, if I fall off a mountain, I love you 'Mes Enfants' - L.A.T.E!