Tuesday, 3 June 2008

"I was OK until I reached the 99.8 mile checkout!"

And so said Ed McKinney!

Ed was taking part in the Grand Union Canal Race - a gruelling run from Birmingham to London along the canal towpath. The race is run over a distance of some 145 miles and Ed finished the race in a magnificent 12th place in a time of 36 hours 9 minutes (was that a pb Ed?).

Ed's report follows:

"The time's not too impressive when you actually do the sums but I'm just relieved to have reached the finish. It's an awful long way !!!

I was going OK to the checkpoint at 99.8 miles and had just overtaken a few people to get up to 7th position but when I left the checkpoint 15 mins later (at 4am) I just fell apart completely. I started to go down the canal the wrong way before someone stopped me and then I started hallucinating with sheer tiredness. My feet began to hurt so much that every step shot pain up my legs and by 104 miles I couldn't run any further so was left with the prospect of walking a further 40 miles in pouring rain and even that was excruciatingly painful.

At the 120 mile checkpoint I arrived shivering with cold and prepared to drop out but they got me warmed up with some cups of tea and food and lots of clean clothes and forced me out again. A friend from work turned up with perfect timing to walk the next 13 miles with me and try to keep me focussed but it was just interminable.

After covering the first 100 miles in just over 22 hours, those last 45 miles took me over 13 hours and it felt like twice that long.

Not so much a run as 36 hours of torture!"

Well done Ed - but the words 'barking' and 'mad' do spring to mind!

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