Running from Shadows

My Marathon des Sables . . . and beyond

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Stage 2, 22.5 miles: The Ancient Khmer Path (Cambodia)

There’s a great simplicity in these types of races: get up, eat, pack, stand at the start line, run, stop, eat, sleep . . . and marvel at all the different lives and the world around you. Little time had passed since my alarm and here we were ready to run again in that time between full darkness and full light, possibly the coolest time it would ever be: the sky was giving off amazing hues of blues as the sun woke up and sped over the horizon and across the tree tops. Continue reading


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Pre-race: The Ancient Khmer Path (Cambodia)

Where does time go?! It’s been a while since I got back from Cambodia just before Christmas 2015 and time has flown with promised DIY, a decluttering binge, Christmas preparation . . . and before I know it we’re mid-way through February 2016!

If you didn’t know already my attempt at Global LimitsThe Ancient Khmer Path resulted in my second multi-day stage race DNF part-way through the long day . . . read on! Continue reading


About The Ancient Khmer Path, Cambodia

Run by GlobalLimits, itself headed by seasoned German ultrarunner Stefan Betzelt, it ran its first multi-day stage footrace back in 2012: the Ancient Khmer Path. The GlobalLimits portfolio now includes a footrace across Sri Lanka and the Kingdom of Bhutan. I’d heard good things about GlobalLimits and the AKP so it was the natural choice after my aborted 4Deserts Jordan race last year (whether or not I’ll do another one of theirs . . . that’s another story!). And having visited Cambodia back in 2009 and fallen in love with the place it was always a country I’d want to go back to: the opportunity to run across it seemed a great excuse to return. Continue reading

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Another PB and a change of plan . . .

It wasn’t until yesterday morning (Saturday) that I finally felt my cold was sufficiently gone to attempt a run. My last one was on Tuesday of last week, an easy 5 miler. Other than that, my body has experienced just an hour-long hard gym session this week. Almost 2 weeks with a cold and hence just 2 training sessions! It couldn’t have come at a worse time, with just a few weeks until I reach the start line of the 140-mile Ancient Khmer Path multi-stage footrace. So the question for me this week was how to recover quickly and try and get back some of that fitness edge I had 2 weeks ago.

Hence a call to my coach, Rory Coleman, to chat through my plan for November. My end-October double marathon attempt having been scuppered, it was very useful to chat through with Rory what I should do. The upshot? Lose more weight (FAST!) and go eyeballs-out-crazy-man on my fast runs. The endurance capability should be in my body now for the remaining weeks, having built it since June on an already-strong base. The key now is to maintain that with some speedier runs and dropping some more weight (22lbs (1 stone 8lbs) or 9kg has already melted away since the beginning of 2015).

So guess what I decided to do yesterday? A Parkrun! A phlegmy chest and cold? Pah! Parkrun would sort it out . . . Continue reading