Sarah will tell you that I have a terrible memory. Sometimes it's funny, sometimes frustrating - and sometimes my poor memory is purely protective!
Well today I was reminded why I don't do more of these events and why my poor memory keeps me coming back. If I actually remembered how endurance running feels - forget it!
Today was brutal, punishing and scary all at the same time. I'm usually quite positive and can find the good in most things but today I struggled... I'm certainly not whinging because I know I put myself in this position, but boy did Italy kick my butt today.
NEED FOR ICE.
I won't go into too much detail but the 33 degree heat and the crazy highways had me craving ICE in 2 very different ways. I would have given anything for a big ice bath half way through the day when I was cooking in the midday heat.
And secondly, I needed ice flowing through my veins today, running on highways with no shoulder and 18 wheelers steaming past. The only thing that kept me calm was the thought that cycling is a big sport in Italy and surely these trucks are used to sharing the roads...
This mornings sunrise was perfect and the first few hours felt comfortable and smooth. I only got lost twice today and feeling fresh made it easier to deal with.
I distinctly remember saying to myself this morning though - 'Slow down, you cannot even comprehend the pain you're going to be in by the end of today'. I wish I had have heeded my own advice!
Today, I experienced a situation that shook me to my very core and has changed the way I view these adventures and the way I look in the mirror now. The details of what unfolded are for another time but needless to say the last 10km taking nearly 3 hours to complete was tough.
There may have even been a few tears when I finally finished safely today.
Tomorrow is another big day and I'm hoping I pull up ok. The feet aren't too beat up and my legs feel good considering. The sunburn and heat exhaustion will be the things to watch tomorrow. I also need to improve my food intake. There is a distinct lack of shops on my route so today I had to survive on bananas for breakfast, an energy gel and a handful of almonds. Not ideal.
Fluids were ok though. There are the occasional fountains that are a godsend and most petrol stations sell water (and alcohol).
Special thanks must go to my amazing wife who stayed up till all hours waiting for me to arrive safely at Day 1 base camp. Thanks for your messages and support today Sare! You saved me.
Today's HBWR Km Count - 55