I had planned on a 91km recce of the Great Ocean Walk with Spoonman
this weekend but was clearly not well on Friday so dropped out. But I
still needed a long run so scheduled a trip down the coast for
yesterday. I slept in and had to drag myself out. Ended up just going
to the Ironbark Basin. It was mid morning by the time I hit the track
and it was hotting up. I headed back towards the circus of Bells
Beach Easter Carnival before doubling back through the Basin and onto
Anglesea. After just 1/2 an hour I was struggling. It was hot. I had
no energy. But worse was the lack of any desire to be out there. I
txt'd my coach and he told me I needed an easy week. I think he would
then can me for being soft. But that didn't solve the problem at
hand. Should I just pack it in? I needed kms in my legs. And then I
remembered what I was training for: Hardrock. There will be many dark
moments out there. If I gave up at the first bad patch I might as
well not bother starting. "Suck it up princess," had been another
motivating txt message. So I walked. I jogged when I could. I kept
moving forward. Gradually I found rhythm. I passed my usual
turnaround point and continued through the residential zone. Up this
enormous hill. I found the connecting road and trail I had been
looking for and set off towards Aireys. I was running the uphills as
well now. Big hills. Eventually I turned back and found another trail
back down to the coast. By the time I got back to Addis I was pretty
stuffed. I opted to run up the road to save a couple of kms through
the basin. Up the road. I don't think I have ever run up that hill.
And here I was after 6 hours running up that hill. The late afternoon
sun was tormenting me and I ran from shadow to shadow. I was out of
water when I hit the final km of trail but I still jogged it in.
Totally spent. I realised that today wasn't about training my legs.
It was about training my mind. I needed to get back to the
fundamental hardcore principles of ultra running where the effort is
only 40% physical. I needed to find that 60% mental to get me there.
Maybe not a case of "sucking it up princess" but "toughen up
princess". Easy week this week? I think not.