1 day before
Living in Doncaster, it’s only a 35minute drive to Brahman park, so I went up on the Friday to pitch the tent in the solo camping area and get a good space, which I did, 50 meters from the solo entry/exist passing the portaloos on the way.
I usually get excited before races, this time, I was bricking it. Everyone lined up. My nerves settled and I soaked up the atmosphere. The colourful festival flags flying, the clear blue sky, the heat (it was nearly 30C), the supporters and their cheering, the nerves on some faces, the fight in others eyes. Then the gun went.
I just ran my usual threshold speed, knowing that I’d naturally get slower as I fatigued. It turned out, that was probably a bit fast as I clocked my first lap in 41 mins and was the 2nd solo female through. Mmm, best slow it down a bit. I walked-jogged the next lap, still a bit fast at 61 minutes. Oh well, I’m going to be getting slower from now on.
I got back to the tent and tried to find the coolest place to lie down, there wasn’t many options in the early afternoon sun. I opted for inside the tent as I didn’t want to be getting burnt. I lay in a puddle of my own sweat for 30 minutes, ate a banana, drank some water and did my next 2 laps (one run, one run/shuffle-walk).
My plan was to have one short break of around 30 minutes, a middle one of 2 hours and a long recovery period of 3.5 hours. I did have a theory behind this based on a book I’d recently borrowed called Sleep by Nick Littllehales; each sleep cycle is 90 minutes and if you wake up at the end of a cycle, you’ll feel fresher than if you were to wake up mid-cycle. That was the theory.