Marlborough Challenge - done!

After 33 miles of wide open views, chalk hill figures, ancient burial mounds, stone circles and neolithic tracks, sun, wind and rain, elation and pain - I'm done!

33rd mile

I came in 107th, out of 150-odd finishers. About 40 people either dropped out along the way, or didn't show up on the day. I managed to get round in 6 hours 27 minutes, which is about what I expected, if not a bit faster.

Big thanks go out to Pete and Jo for coming down to Avebury and the finish line, and to Helen, for putting up with my training and boring blurbs about hill reps and pace records for the last few months, and then being good enough to hug me (despite my being all stinky and sweaty) at various check points on the way round.
But untold thanks must go to Stewart, who came along to give me the support of someone who knew the route, had run it before, and could ferry Helen between check points. Without Stewart, it would have been a far lonelier run.
I also have to say how amazing the other runner on this event were - everyone (at least, everyone I met) was cheerful and friendly, far more interested in having a good day than beating anyone.

My muscles seems fine today: tired, but not aching. More uncomfortable is my left knee, which really started to whinge and complain at about 28 miles. The pain seems centred on the tendons along the side of the knee, that move the foot and lower leg, and it comes on with the last few degrees of movement between bending and straightening my knee. On the other hand, I can already walk down stairs like a normal person, so it's not all that bad.
I had a similar injury on my first long run, last year - on my right knee. It just needed rest and shorter distances - and now, I think it's stronger.
I dare say I'll be recovered enough for work on Wednesday.

You can, of course, still visit my Just Giving page to donate - it stays open till the 12th August. Thanks to everyone who's donated so far. It really helped inspire me to keep going, knowing that people have put their hands in pockets to donate on my behalf.

And now? A few short runs this week, and settle into a 10 mile max routine again... until the next event that takes my fancy.
Someone told me there's a run from Avebury to Stonehenge on the May Day Bank Holiday...

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