Monday, 12 March 2012

The marathon I wasn't supposed to run

Back in December I signed up for the Six Foot Track Marathon. The race is on a gruelling fire trail between Katoomba and the Jenolan Caves in the Blue Mountains. I hadn't even heard of the race before my friend Trish convinced me to sign up. Walkers take three days to complete the track and runners are challenged to do it in under seven hours. What am I getting myself into??

For my previous three marathons I've followed one of Hal Higdon's eighteen week of training programs. I didn't do that much training in the run up to Christmas and all of a sudden it was January with only nine weeks left. I hit the training hard. In hindsight I didn't do a proper build up and I've been struggling with a knee injury for the last couple of months as a result.

I joined the Sydney Striders training group and we've been doing some glorious Saturday morning bush runs around Sydney for the last couple of months. I've really enjoyed exploring some of the outskirts of Sydney. This really is a beautiful city with some amazing national parks right on the doorstep.

However, my knee was preventing me from doing enough serious training. My physio ensured me I wasn't doing any long term damage, but things slowly got more serious as I started to run with strappings and icing my knee.

I barely ran in the last four weeks. Overweight and not in shape I wasn't particularly looking forward to the race. When it was cancelled last week due to the inclement weather I can't say I was particularly disappointed, I think it was for the best.

With a gorgeous house booked we decided to have a weekend in the Blue Mountains anyway. On the Saturday morning we decided to do an 'easy' consolation run. After some quick research we decided to do the Glenraphael Drive / Narrowneck track. On a ridge with the Jamison and Megalong Valley's dropping away on either side the views were STUNNING.

Out of the track we passed a lot of other runners who were also in town for the cancelled race. Everyone was incredibly friendly and full or stories from their training or last year's race.

Next time you are in Katoomba I'd highly recommend checking out the track.

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