Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

Dawn - Sometimes An Ultrarunner

May 15, 2011

Ready or not, Housman 100 here I come!

As I was running home from work today (it's all of 3 miles, and somewhat downhill), I realized I will have to cover that same distance 33 times, plus a bit extra, that to finish the 100 miles.  Complete with hills, wind, probably rain, darkness, and perhaps even a bit of sunshine.  The sadistic organizers of this years LDWA Housman 100 actually admit that the route is not 100 miles either, its at least 101.   That last 1 mile is going to take forever, I just know it.   Added to that is my propensity for getting really, really lost, and I'm sure to go well over the advertised distance. 

All that aside, I am really excited for the big day to arrive, and want to start packing already, even if it is still two weeks away.  After recovering from the Bob Graham recce a week ago, which made me really, really sore, I now feel ready to go for the 100.  And I'm going to make sure that I get a good taper, which includes plenty of rest, heathly eating, and not a whole lot of exercise.  Except for that little matter of the Open Adverture 5+ race next weekend, which, as a combination of running and biking over (you guessed it) five hours, shouldn't tire me out too much. 

To get in the right frame of mind, I am re-reading the book Out On Your Feet: The Hallucinatory World of Hundred-Mile Walking by Julie Welch.  It is about the crazy people who attempt to do this LDWA 100 mile walk every year, and I laughed like crazy the first time I read it.  Soberingly, that was before I signed up to do my own attempt at this 100 mile event.  What was I thinking?   I'm sure the reality of it will set in after my second reading, that this one hundred miles is going to take a really long time, and will perhaps require walking through two nights. 

Hopefully not, though, as the plan is to start at 10 a.m. on Saturday, walk/run for between 24-30 hours, and finish well before dark on Sunday.  That is, if I don't get too distracted by all the goodies on offer at the numerous aid stations, and the nice comfortable chairs wooden benches that will call out to me sit down for just an hour a minute or two.  I'm looking forward to the hallucinations that Julie Welch promised will eventually visit us all, and mostly, to the finish line and a big pizza feast afterwards.  Ok, honestly, I really just want to eat whatever looks good (and lots of it) for 24 hours in a row!   Although that strategy might turn 24 hours of running into 48 hours of painful nauseated walking. 

So for the others that will also toe the starting line in Shropshire in two weeks, let me know when you are planning on starting so I can keep an eye out for you to pass me like I am standing still, while munching at every aid station!


  1. I did the LDWA Yoredale 100 in 2008 and will email you shortly with some bits of advice. I've done quite a few ultras / LDWA events / long fell races but there is something very special about the 100 ;-)

  2. One more week, I can't wait!

  3. I thought you could e-mail folk through the Blogger system but I can't work out how to do it!

    My advice is try not to get isolated during the 100. Do your best to stick with other hikers. I ended up doing around 10miles on my own on the Sunday morning. It was up in Wensleydale (the bit I knew least well) and I had to navigate as well as plod on with tiring legs

    Another thing is don't forget to eat towards the end. It's tempting to think with 10 or even five miles to go that you'll be okay but you must keep eating

    Good luck and I hope your blisters aren't too bad. A friend had to cut my socks off when I finished :-D

  4. Thanks for the advice, and I'm going to try to just go steady around. Looking forward to eating everything in sight as well, before, during and after! I'm told that the food on the hundreds is usually top-notch. Now if the rain just holds off for this weekend...