WE DID IT!
I successfully completed the Snowdonia Slate Trail Ultra Marathon at the weekend!
I am also over the moon that we raised £591 for Animal Rescue Centre – ARC, South Goa which will help them so much!! I will leave the donation page open until Sunday 3rd March as I know a few people would still like to make a contribution. Thank you to everyone that have already donated!!DONATE HERE: www.gofundme.com/OGARC
There will be a video soon of footage that Daniel Victor Bourne was able to capture, will just have to be patient for this but in the meantime here is a few highlights of what went down!
So this race was a 5 point UTMB/ITRA rated race due to distance and lack of aid stations etc (6 point rating being the highest).
I completed the 89-mile route in 31hrs 49mins placing me 19th out of 52 competitors (around 14 racers unfortunately did not finish).
Being a perfectionist and as competitive as I am, I’m a little disappointed with the result as I was aiming for sub 24hrs.
On the positive side, I felt very strong all throughout the race and at no point felt worried about fitness, muscle fatigue, cramp etc. This was a big win for me as I’ve only ever ran 31 miles in one hit since I started running 5 months ago so this was a giant step up and left me feeling positive that sub 24hrs is easily attainable however, my inexperience with other factors outside of the physical and mental side started to show the deeper I got in to the race.
Navigating for this event I found very challenging at moments which lost me a lot of time. Using a phone for nav in remote locations was not a great idea and my map reading skills were just not good enough to help. Next time I’ll invest in a handheld GPX satellite tracker.
I also lost my phone half way through the race for about 2 hours which left me stranded trying to guess which paths to take which had me running around in circles until eventually another runner caught up and asked me if I had lost a phone he had found which was an absolute life saving moment!
Around 45 miles in, my feet started to become extremely painful which I assumed was just blisters. After a painful 20 mile run to the 3rd and final check point I soon found out it was trench foot which resulted in a long pit stop to dry out my feet and taping up the blisters as best as possible.
Leaving the final checkpoint and 24 miles to go, I was warned to keep left of Llyn Ogwen (a massive lake), to follow the main road and not to cross the road and go right of the lake which was the original route but due to the bad visibility, deep bog etc, this was scrapped.
Somehow I managed to end up on the right of the lake and this went from what probably should have been a 15 minute or so run up a road to 45+ minute cliff hanger mission, scrambling over giant boulders making sure I didn’t fall into a river and running through knee high bog all in the pitch black!
Up until that point my feet had felt brand new again however, making it out of the boulders my feet were once again ruined only this time I could no longer run due to the pain and severe swelling.
Shakiba was waiting for me at the end of the lake to pace me but this ended up in a very long and cold 20km power walk eventually making it to the finish line at around 3am Sunday Morning.
I could write a book on all the memories I will take away from this experience from seeing the sunrise from the top of a mountain to constantly seeing dead sheep in the middle of the night that turned out to be just big rocks probably due to sleep deprivation (awake for 45hrs by the time I reached the finish), either way this was without a doubt an amazing experience and loved every moment of it!
Being able to share some of these moments with Shakiba was the icing on the cake although we were just missing Bruce Lee and Tyson (our huskies)!
I would like to thank everyone that came out to help, Shakiba, Tom Hibbert, Daniel Victor Bourne,Suvi Karhu, my dad and also to Shadi Ganjavian-connor and Tim Connor who both helped with my feet at check point 3!!
Also to Vivo Life, between the perform, sustain and thrive, these pretty much fuelled me through the entire race.
All these people were part of the reason why I finished this race!
Also to everyone messaging me during the race. I saw everyone’s messages, just concentrating too much to be able to reply.
Until the next the challenge!