Back in September 2015 I spent a few days in Jackson Hole with Eric on one of his run camps

I’d been hatching a Cool Impossible to run (solo) one of the long distance footpaths in the UK. I challenge not only of running ability but also navigation and logistical support.

The run camp provided a lot of support, knowledge and advice around what was needed to run “all day”, in particular around HRZs

At that time the CI was a long term aim, and I had no races or events planned

I clearly remember Eric saying – “Rich make sure you have a goal”. Waiting at the airport to fly home I wrote down a lot of what Eric had said, but I didn’t write down “make sure you have a goal”.

So this is what happened. Came back to the UK after the camp, re-did a mile test, set some new HRZ boundaries with Eric’s help, and ran to the zones that would support going “all day”. By spring 2016 I realised I was running faster by running slower – the whole fat burning thing was right (not that I doubted Eric). Around May 2016 I did a test ‘adventure’ run from seal level on the coast up to a town on the high moors – 20 odd miles, testing navigation, hydration, fuelling and running ability. All worked well, but I didn’t set any “goals” other than the long term CI aim I had – and that was the problem I had it pinned as “long term” “one day” “may be”, and then my running started to drift

Autumn came around, my youngest moved up to senior school (my other two were already there) my eldest started a critical exam year at school, in October 2016 we decided to move house, we moved in December 2016. Spent early part of 2017 settling into new house, my eldest kids exams came and went, and all the time the running just drifted.

The long term CI goal, seemed even further away and I was only running about once a week (previously I’d run at least 3 times a week)

I dug out my note book from when I’d first planned my long term CI back in 2015 – something jumped out at me from the page – “for build up do an organised race”

I could hear Eric’s voice in my head “Rich make sure you have a goal”

I’ve been on the case, I have two possible races lined up for 2018 – just waiting on confirmation of dates from the organisers to make sure it all fits – but even if they don’t work out there will be an off-road race of at least 50k for me in 2018. These and no doubt others will be my stepping stone to my CI to run a long distance footpath – solo.

This Sunday’s run was awesome as a result – took off out the door full of ideas for race training – and aced the heart zones on the run – best feel run I’ve had in ages

 

Folks – have a goal – stay on track!

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