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Jonathon's Racing Attacks and Adventure Packs!

Amazing racing and training adventures on roads and mountainous/hilly TRAILS, freewaybikehike and triathlons. Dreams of a SIX FOOT 45km finish,(DONE 2011,2013,2014,2015!),then ULTRA-TRAIL AUSTRALIA (50km DONE 2016! 100km DONE 2018!!!), memorable Melbourne Marathon and Gold Coast racing. Over a decade dreaming of a SUB 3HR MARATHON, sub 18min 5k, sub 38min 10k, sub 90min Half marathon etc...(shattered? or still realistic?)

My Photo
Location: Perth, Western Australia, Australia

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42.2km SB; 2004; 3.55 2005; 4.02 2006; 4.18 2007; 4.10 2008; 3.55
2009; 4.11 2010; 4.05 2011; 4.02 2012;3.49 2013; 4.12 ... 2014; ; 4.08 ...2015; 4.00
2016; 4.11 2018; 4.15
More ongoing GOALS;
***PB's pursuit; 5k 21.49, 10k 41.01 21.1k 1.41, ...42.2k 3.49

MM and the G!...

In recent years I have been enjoying races like;
December; 6-INCH(46km offroad)2005;--6 hrs 25 min...
2006; 7hrs 04 min 2008; 7hrs 00min...2009; 6hrs 16min
...2010:--5hrs 49min..2011:---5hrs 30min..2013---7 hrs 24min... 2014--- 7 hrs 06min 2015--6hours 43min ...2016---6hours 41min
October; Melbourne Marathon 2007; 4hr 10 . 2008 DNF at 23km..
2009 4hrs 11. 2010 4hrs 05min...2011;4hrs 02min...photos
2012; 3hrs 49min 52secs PB!... ..2013; 4.12 2014; 4.08 2015; 4.05... 2016; 4.53
Rottnest Marathon 2004; 4hr 32min ... 2013; 4hr 16min
August; City to Surf most years since 1997 see HERE for details,photos.
PERTH C2S PB's; 4K;17min 25 (2002) 12K;52min 52 (1997)
21.1K;1.54.20 (2007) 42.2K; 4.00.20 (2015) (2010 video)
Perth City to Surf Marathon finisher 2009,2010, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
GOLD COAST; 2012 HALF; 1.44 2013 HALF; 1.47 2014 HALF 1.49
2015 4.11 ..., 2016 4.11
PERTH Marathon(42.2km)
2004; 3hrs55min
2005;--4 hrs 02 min. 2006; 4hrs 18min 2007;4hrs 33
2008; 3hrs 55 2009; 4hrs 41min 2010; 4hrs 30min
2011; 4hrs 12min 2012; 4hrs 6min 2013; 4hrs 19min 2014 4hrs 48min 2018 4hrs 15min
2016 50km 9 hours 50min
2017 100km DNF CP4 57km
2018 100km 24hrs 33min 15
April;TWO DECADES of Bridges racing; 1997; 43min 43 1998; 41min 01
1999; 47min 29 2000; 46min 47 2001; (5km) 30min 01 2002; (5km) 22min 48
2003; 42min 40 2004; 48min 50 2005; 44min 40 2006; 48min 07 2007; 49min 16
2008; 50min 42 2009; 49min 54 2010; 48min 39 2011; 52min 55 2012; 47min 02 2013; 54min 45 2014; 48min 47 2015; 49min 53 2016 52min 20
March;6 Foot Track 45km;
2011; 6.53 2013; 6.54 2014; 6.47
2015; 6.14!!! 2016 DNF

As of June 2018; 31 road marathons finished (Perth x12, Melbourne x9,Perth City to Surf x6 Gold Coast x2 Rottnest x2
Have also finished 19 trail ultra races; 6 inch 47km ultra finished 11 times, six foot 45km ultra 4 times, Ultra Trail Australia ultras 2 times, Truth 50km ultra once within cutoff (and once outside cutoff), Lark Hill 50km ultra once.
Also completed the Bloated Goat 31km (1500m Vertical gain) 2 times which is similiar effort to a 46km ultra.
DNFs in UTA100km, WTF50miler, WAMC40miler race, Truth 50km, Six foot and 6 inch.
The first 3 DNFs were after covering more than 42km, and with Truth one was a 25km DNF and the first one I finished the full 50km but was 19minutes outside cutoff battling an ankle injury for 36km.
In road marathons 2 DNFs one at 23km in the 2008 Melbourne Marathon due to severe ankle injury in the first 1km, and PC2S @ 30km.

Most races since October 2009; >
17/06/2018 Perth Marathon 4hrs 15min
19/05/2018 Ultra-Trail Australia 100km 24hrs 33min 15secs 913th of 964 finishers
218 withdrawals
03/03/2018 Lark Hill 50km
17/12/2017 6 inch 48km 7hrs
06/08/2017 Truth 50km 8hrs 22min 59
16/07/2017 Jolly Jumbuck 21km 2hr 54min (94th of 129)
02/07/2017 King of the Mountain 16km 1hr 41min
20/05/2017 Ultra-Trail AUSTRALIA 100km DNF (at 58km and 10hours 38min)
26/03/2017 Bloated Goat 30km 5hr 18min
18/12/2016 6 inch 48km 6hrs 41min
16/10/2016 Melbourne Marathon 4hours 53min
25/09/2016 WTF 50 miler DNF at 55km
14/08/2016 Truth 50km DNF at 25km
3/07/2016 Gold Coast Marathon 4.11
14/05/2016 Ultra Trail Australia 50km 9 hours 50min
3/4/2016 My 20th consecutive Bridges fun run 10km 52.20 (hammy strain)
12/3/2016 Six Foot Track DNF at 30km 5 hours.
---------------------- 20/12/2015 6 inch 47km 6 hours 43min
15/11/15 Bloated Goat 30km Trails race (1600m Vert) 5hrs 43min
18/10/15 Melbourne Marathon 4.05
13/09/15 Fremantle 10km 47min 22
30/08/15 Perth City to Surf Marathon 4 hours 00min 20 secs.
05/07/15 GCM 4.11
24/05/15 R4R Half Marathon 1hr 46min 13secs
12/04/15 Bridges 10km 49min 53secs.
04/04/15 Perth Trail Series Truth & Consequences 50km ULTRA 8hours 49min
14/03/15 Six Foot Track 45km 6hrs 14min 11secs Smashing PB!!! (32min)
21/12/14 6 inch Trail 47km 7hrs 06min 30secs
12/10/14 Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 8min (8th fastest marathon in 25 finished)
14/09/14 Fremantle 10km 49min 26 (first K 3.47 5k split 23.02)
31/08/14 Perth City to Surf 42.2k 4hrs 34min
06/07/14 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1.49
15/06/14 Perth Marathon 4.48
01/06/14 Elleker Half Marathon 1.59.
21/04/14 40 miler DNF (28miles)
06/04/14 18th Bridges 10km 48min 47secs...since 1997
08/03/14 6 Foot Track 45km 6hrs 47min 02. (824th) A PB!!! :-)
09/02/14 Snakes and Ladders 15km 2.05
15/12/13 6 inch Trail Ultra 7.24
27/10/13 Rottnest Marathon 4.16.41
13/10/13 Melbourne Marathon 4.12.55
25/08/13 Perth City to Surf Marathon 4.13.28
11/08/13 Perth Half Marathon 1.54.05
28/07/13 Fremantle 10km 50.06 (very sick but first 1k in 3.55)
07/07/13 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1.47.29

16/06/13 Perth Marathon 4hrs 19min 55secs
My 10th consecutive Perth Marathon...Click to see -> how I became a SPARTAN...

19/05/13 Joondalup Half Marathon 1hr 58min 26secs 310th of 495.
07/04/13 Bridges 10km 54min 45seconds.
09/03/13 6 Foot Track 45km 6 hours 54 minutes 20 seconds. 740th of 804...blog post or ...photos! page.

24/02/13 Perth Trail Series Qi Gong 14km 1hr 37min 04 Placed 79th of 117 finishers.
09/02/13 Busselton Half Marathon 1hr 51min 58 secs 219th. full Busso results here
02/11/12 John Gilmour 10k track 47.17 ..see here
14/10/12 Melbourne Marathon 3hrs 49min 52secs ..(777.)
16/09/12 Fremantle 10km 47min 16
26/08/12 City to Surf Marathon 4hrs 42min 41 secs
15/07/12 Lake Joondalup 10km 47min 30.
01/07/12 Gold Coast Half Marathon 1hr 44min 49 secs. 1668th of 9035 finishers

17/06/12 Perth Marathon 4hrs 6min .. (post and photos here)
20/05/12 Joondalup Half Marathon 1hr 47min 01secs. (151st of 313 finishers)
15/05/12 Masters 5000m 21min 58secs
13/05/12 Bunbury Half Marathon 1hr 46min 45 secs. (76th of 240 finishers)
22/04/12 PTS Ellis Brook 21.8km trails race 3hrs 12min 28secs. 39th.
01/04/12 Bridges 10km 47min 02
25/03/12 17.3km (690m ascent) Swissmurdie trails race 2hrs 19min 17secs 54th of 60.
20/03/12 MastersWA 1500m in 5.56, 100m in 14.3, 400m in 76.4, 5000m in 23.33.
26/02/12 WAMC Swan Twilight 5km 24.32
26/02/12 Perth Trail Series Qi Gong 14km 1hr 44min 08 secs 70th of 102.
04/02/12 Busselton Half Marathon in 1hr 49min 31 secs.
18/12/11 6 inch 46km 5hrs 30min PB!
09/10/11 Melbourne Marathon in 4hours 02minutes 49secs...photos...

12/09/11 Fremantle 10km in 45minutes 50 secs.
7/8/11 Perth Half Marathon in 1hr 47min 46 secs.
17/7/11 Lake Joondalup 10km in 46min 33secs.
19/6/11 Perth Marathon in 4 hours 12min 54secs (351st of 547.)
12/6/11 Lake Monger 10km in 48min 09secs
22/5/11 Bunbury Half Marathon 1hr 51min 44secs 109th of 261 finishers
10/4/11 Bridges 10km 52min 55
12/3/11 6 foot 45km in 6hrs 53min 07 secs...819th...of 877...33 DNF's...4 outside 7hr cutoffRace Report and race photosPre & post race photos,initial ELATION
Note; Completing 6 foot is a major goal achieved which I have had in mind since 2005!!!!!!!

4/3/11 3000m in 12min 40 (19th of 19 finishers)Momentum building a little,sub 13 done! :-)
18/2/11 5000m in 23min 31 (20th of 20 finishers...4 DNF's)..results
5/2/2011 21.1km Busselton Half in 1hr 51min 41 secs for 124th of 218 finishers.
19/12/10 46km 6 inch trails race in 5hr 49min (63rd of 79 finishers)
10/12/10 5000m in 22.43 18th of 18!
5/11/10 John Gilmour 10,000m in 47min 36. (23rd of 31)
10/10/10 Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 5min...2895th of 5027 finishers...
12/9/10 Fremantle 10km in 46min 53...a big SB and my best time since 2005!
29/8/10; 42.2km in 4hrs 15min for 537th of 830 finishers...my 6th best of 12 M. finishes.
19/8/10; 5000m in 22min 06.0 secs (SB by 0.6 of a second, & Stan did a SB also that night)
22/7/10; 5000m in 22min 06.6 secs. (SB and 17secs off my track PB)
20/6/10 Perth Marathon in 4.30.
13/5/10; Masters 2000m 7.55 (first sub 8min run since 2005) & 5,000m 22.42
22/4/10; Masters 800m 2.46 & 5,000m 22.29!~(2nd best ever track 5,000m, track PB is 21.49,)
3/4/10; Australian Masters 35-39yrs; 4th in 1500m 5min 34secs. see here...
28/3/10; Bridges 10km in 48min 39secs. 388th of 1646
25/3/10; 300m in 47.6, 600m in 1.57.0 100m in 14.6
18/3/10; Masters 1500m in 6.03 & 10,000m in 49min 35
28/2/10; 4th place in 6 hour Track Race at Coker Park; 45.003km
6/2/10; Busselton 21.1km in 1hr 52min 50 secs
20/12/09;6 inch 46km 6hrs 16min
15/11/09; Peninsula 5km 22min 5225th of 73.
6/11/09; John Gilmour 10km 48min 39
11/10/09; Melbourne Marathon 4hrs 11 min 33 secs
4/10/09; Freo funrun 5km in 22min 53 secs
... ...
2011; 5hrs 30min 6 inchPB!! 2012; 3hrs 49min PB(Melbourne Marathon)!!2014; 6hrs 47min PB! @ 6 foot!

The next big things racing wise maybe;

6 inch 46km
on 16th December @ 0430hrs, countdown (activated a few days before?) is;

Kathryn and I welcomed our daughter Jordan into the world June 2010 A.D.!
Kathryn and I welcomed our son Jacob into the world in late July 2007 A.D.!
Our challenge is to be good parents with the Creator Gods help!

... 2004 ...2005 ...2006 ...2007... >...2008...2009...2010 ...2011... 2012.

but for the most important thing in life;
there is only 2 ways to live!...Bible Gateway...

Saturday, May 27, 2017

UTA54of100in10hrs38 a very good rehearsal despite being a muddy logistics nightmare

UTA53 aftermath, the day afterwards at Scenic World upperdeck.

 I have spent the best part of 6 months and a lot of blood sweat and tears preparing for this race,as well as 3 drives to the Stirling Ranges, and hundreds of dollars. I did everything I could to get ready, and physically I felt fairly good all the way to Checkpoint 4 at 57.8km or was that 53km?...Katoomba Aquatic Centre...
I could have taken on the the last 42km (or was that 46km?), but the continual logistical, financial barriers, eventually became a bridge too far. My silly choice to put my phone on strava record from the start was a
big mistake that cost me dearly. Lack of watch options was also an issue, and not having enough salt in the race or enough solid food options or something like Tailwind or Hammer perpeteum,or something else plus the issues with having to get my luggage out of storage post race, and having to rearrange my bookings and uncertainty about where I was going to stay the 2 nights post race,left me vulnerable mentally, and the safety issue of not having a working phone for the last 42km (or was that 46km?) of the race at night on muddy singletracks down and up cliffs with my limited night running experience, had  me concerned about how to deal with it all. If I had done a coupleof things differently pre-race, or I had someone to crew me,or I had access to my powerpod, or if I had borrowed a phone at CP4 or I had someone to share my room with the night befoe the race to help reduce costs, if any of those things had happened I might have been a very good chance to finish in about 21-27 hours in my opinion...
Sad end to a serious attempt on the Ultra Trail Australia 100km...but I enjoyed! trying.

Pleased that I made it to UTA CP4in 10 hours though... Was a tough gig just being able to pass the mandatory gear requirements, so I was very nearly a DNS if not for the help of Richard pre-race, and then I had to spend another $20 on a compression bandage the night before the race just to be able to run, which reduced my limited funds further...
Stage 1 of UTA100 CP1 and Tarros ladders
Pre-race meganervous and keen to get into it (watched wave 2,3,and 4 start off heard Eminem Lose Yourself (one chance...this opportunity comes but once in a lifetime etc...) ,Van Halen Jump and ACDC THUNDERSTRUCK blaring on the loudspeakers in apumping crowd of about 2000 runners and another 3000 spectators... Mega psyched up at the start same as last year...got bodyglide done, last minute packing stuff for my 7kg pack (mostly mandatory gear but also 2 powerades and a 1Litre water... First big mistake of the day (which in the end probably the biggest factor causing my eventual DNF at 54km (10hrs38min)) was to start my phone on strava just before I began which ran my phone battery flat about 9-10hours later putting me in a risky safety situation for the nocturnal last 42km on muddy cliff trails, with no crew to help, and with no hotel/motel to stay at that night...which was themain reason why I got mentally weak and DNFed when I really should not have if I had access to a powerpod or a phone...Maybe should have tried to borrow a phone at CP4... But also minor fueling and watch issues... Leading wave 5 by about 20m for about 500m, me and about 10 others (tall bloke in gold top took over the lead) caught the back of the packer wave 4 runners who had 10min headstart on us by about 2km....pushing fairly strongly without being flat out...8kg pack highfiving the kids in the crowd about 3km into it. kept the pedal to the metal alittleto make sure the first 5km was under 30min... Thousands of people in crowd support...about 200-300 runners in all 7 waves... The big guns like Tim Tollefson,Rob Krar, James Roberts, Lucy Bartholomew, Hanny Allston Marlene Lootz Brett Tucker all in wave 1 about 0620am my wave 5 started at 0649hrs...After we finished Cliff Drive road section (with the glorious Megalong Valley vista panorama views most of the first 3km... Hit the trail near Furber steps about 5km into it,and got cautious on the very muddy cliffside descent trails... highfived the spectators at Scenic world lower station boardwalk... and eventually after some easy cliffside trail got to "Landslide" section, lots of automatic cameras from Aurora images taking photos in this section... scrambling rocks section a bit like Mt Toolbrunup summit scrambling section...my first time on "Landslide"... Then it was Golden Stairs which felt pretty hard,similiar to Furber stairs or climbing Mt Trio steep section I think...I had to take a few rests on Golden stairs with my 80kg to cart up that... and let about a hundred or more people go past me...had to keep stopping to let faster ascenders get by... 10km split after the top of that from memory was about 95min... so my first two 5kmsplits about 29min (mostly Cliff Drive road and easy trails), and 65min (cliffside trails to sceneic world,more cliffside trails,Landslide scrambling and Mt Trio-esque Golden Stairs ascent (maybe 300-700m ascent...have to check segment data) up steep steps...so second 5km took double the time of the first 5km... and strava will say I wasn't moving for alot of it but I was for most of it...
Then big wide road/yellow/white firetrail/4wd track along the top of the ridge to Checkpoint One (CP1)... at the summit of the ridge... about 1km of steep climb (legs and cardio only just recovering from Golden Stairs) As I entered CP1 yelled out "Checkpoint... Time extension" (just like some arcade video game I have played...maybe World Rally (car racing game))...a bit hammered but feeling good so far and rolling with the punches (physical challenges) so far.... Hadalready drunk an entire powerade earlier in the misty humid conditions with light rain, and went forwater and a gel at CP1 11km which I got toin 1hr48min... Ran with some NSW bloke and JOHN PHILLIPS (finished in 20.22 later the next day, and who I know from Six Foot Track, 6inch, the C-team, Bloated Goat with MelissaJennings Comrades crew etc) Along the top of the ridge with shallow inclines hitting some 6min Km splits pushing the pace a bit...traded spots with John Phillips a few times....the pace taking a bit out of me after about 10km of that in about 65min-70min, (total racing time at about 3hours by 22km?)...so when we hit a traffic jam of runners descending down singletrack trail off the cliffs into the CLOUDS below in Megalong valley at about 22km mark,it was nice to stop for a bit... was near the back of wave 5 by this timeand starting to get caught by faster wave 6 runners...Big line to get down some ropes on the first rocky bouldering cliff section (a bit like rockclimbing/abseiling with a big rope but no harness)...
Wilson Tucker (Bretts rockclimbing twin brother) caught up from wave 7 (he should have been wave 3-4)...and I took a selfie

and a few other photos waiting for the line to take us to Tarros Ladders on the second cliff section.

Heavyduty powerlines (like in Kalamunda valley or alongside Tonkin Hwy near Armadale) below us in Megalong valley...in the clouds which by this point completely enveloped us so a bit of a whiteout situation...

Was a 7min wait for Tarros Ladders which were a lot of fun...and about 20min or more in total waiting for long line of runners in front and behind...


Attacked tricky singletrack section after seeing Cheryl and David...Running low on drinks and energy... Tricky muddy stuff and still descending but going well on trails similiar to what I am used to.... Timing points,camera points, faster 50km runners catching us... (they started 2 hours later and ran first half of the 100kmcourse instead due to the torrential rain the night before)... Second and last powerade... Muddy Firetrails Megalong Valley...Running at slow pace... walk breaks on climbs... Switchback steep climbs, Jack and Kathleen then Cheryl, David....watch ran flat... 4hrs 26km tired, and out of drinks.

Didgeridoos x3 Dunphys CP2 (5hrs 33min?), CP3 SIXFOOTTRK (7hrs37min) drop bag
Main watch out of charge, so time to try and get signal on watch number 2 (Garmin 10 I borrowed from my wife)...Estimated I was about 6km from CP2 (Dunphys camp) Important as I had run out of drinks and food. Slowed things down and walked for a few K's kept energy usage low...
2.2Litres not enough drinks for first 5 hours...Needed at least a 3rd powerade...Running again and greeted by the surreal sensational experience of hearing Didgeridoos on both sides of the trail about 3-4 of them....A Didgeridoo Orchestra trio? on a remote trail...Wow!!!...That perked up my flagging spirits considerably, a race highlight.  Soon after  I spotted some volunteers in orange HighVis vests...Yeehah the signal that Dunphys Camp CP2 was only 100m away..

Dunphys Camp below CP2 33km Soooo glad to see this.

On arrival I drank several cups of sports drink, and several cups of CocaCola which tasted so awesome and energized me again... Quick toilet stopNo 1's at the Portaloos and gotout of there... 100km runners went left and 50km runners went right...Took the left turn,and tooka bunch of photos of the sandstone cliffs...

 Then with my hydration sorted and a CocaCola boost,i set about trying to push the pace a bit on my tired and stiff legs... Ended up running with two ladies in darkpink and orange shirts for awhile, and then soon after that rejoined the faster 50km runners Some small ascents and was starting to get worn out a bit by the time we reached the outskirts of CP3 Six Foot Track...46km? or 43kmor whatever it was...

Anyhow when I heard the crowd noise at Checkpoint 3 up ahead I felt megahappy and was ready to go hard into the CP3,but my high spirits were dampened when I saw a gearcheck table assembled ahead of me... They checked for HighVis vest and headlamp,both of which I was able tofind in mypack quickly,so that was over quickly and then I celebrated emotionally as I entered Cp3 and located my first drop bag... sitting on the chairs provided (thanks UTA for those!!!) looking through my drop bag I met some NSW blokein a Running Wild shirt who was doing similiarhis name was Dennis Clarke? if I remember correctly, and we both discussed our goalsof chasing a sub 20 hour effort which was still within reach 7hrs and 37minutes into it... Juliette Buchanan appeared in the drop bag tent about this time,was nice to see another West Aussie on the trail which was about the 6th Westralian based runner I had seen so far in the race... So in my drop bag I slammed down a 200ml SOLO(light on the fizz so you can slam it down fast...youve passed the challenge youve earned the reward...hahaha)...Powerades, water,and Carmans bars...Like Hiking camp spares bag day, it is incredible how good stuff is at this point in the race... Was missing salty options though...big mistake in my dropbags, note for the future,some salty peanuts or chips or something... and maybe some lollies... Didn't like the stuff at the aid stations much but at CP3 I located some pink icing buns and that was delicious... Suitably fueled up and ready to go again, I was alarmed to notice that I had spent 20minutes in the aid station...but stilltime wellspent... Back onto the trail with only about 11km to go to get to CP4 at Katoomba Aquatic Centre...but I knew that Nellies Glen 400m ascent awaited me, and its a tough,tough ascent...especially when the body is already pretty tired from 8hours+ on the trails...So while I tried to get running, I also tried to conserve energy the closer we got to Nellies Glen as I knew this climb was goping to be a tough challenge for me...Headingalong the valley floor towards the yellow sandstone cliffs I started to recognise much of the Six Foot Track trail which I have raced on 5 times since 2011...We saw a dead snake on the trail...possibly a Tigersnake? and as we headed towards Nellies Glen my watch ran out of charge...

Stage 3 Nellies Glen tough muddy rocky steps ASCENT CP4 Katoomba Aquatic (10hrs 38min)Phone dead, watches dead,need salt, need nutrition,no crew, A night on muddy clifftop trails with no motel to crash in post race too much to deal with
Alongside Megalong Creek after seeing the dead snake, it was time for watch number 3 my original first Garmin 10 I bought in 2013 which still works but doesn't hold charge well, the wristband is utterly destroyed, plus one of the buttons is broken so I have to wait until it runs flat for the run to save...But its good for a few hours charge...Took ages to find signal deep in the valley,but eventually it got it. By that time I had stiffened up from standing still for awhile and with Nellies Glen ascent ahead I took it slowwalking abit,jogging a little,and eventually the climb started to steepen and the the trees and scrub got denser around us...Very slippery rocks and little streams of water crisscrossing the trail a lot...Also had hundreds of 50km runners wanting to shoot through fast...whileI didn't... The ascent is a tough one and it challenged me a lot,but its also an amazing amazing rainforest type cliffside with lotsof Ferns...and mini waterfalls on the small streams of water all the way up...Maximum alertness to stay upright...Have descended this one at Six Foot Track 45km race 5 times, but this was my first time going up it and it was hard! Had tokeep standing aside for hordes of 50km runners to get past...not fun...Was very glad to see the top of that...and we all got a few big cheers from course officials,spectators at the top which was very nice...

 saw some beautiful cliff views below and got my phone out to take a photo...It wouldn't turn on...battery flat after more than 9 hours on strava record an activity...oh no... disaster danger worldin crisis moment... Right then and there I started thinking no I don't want to go on with my phone being non-operational... Then there was some annoying steps and singletracks...came across someone struggling with cramps or some injury... eventually got to steep road which took us into Katoomba town ...after 10 hours I was tired... Got told to put High Vis vest on by an official so I did... and then jogging and walking my way down the steep slippery bitumen road with CP4 57km (or 53km or whatever it was) ahead I knew my heart wasn't in it anymore, and with no phone, sore feet, low energy and daylight fading, my resolve to continue was fading fast... eventually the Katoomba Aquatic Centre loomed up ahead, the orange flag bunting... and inside the building which is like a bunch of indoor basketball courts, and feels very surreal after 10hours on the trail to enter this building... Lady directs me to my dropbags and chair, is very friendly and extremely helpful as all the course helpers were... I know my watch is running low on charge, but its probably got another hour or two left on it...but my phone is dead, and as at CP3 I have no food I like, and need salt...don't really feel like drinking much but feel very hungry...note for the future...LOTS OF FOOD especially SALTY food at CP4... nuts, chips,lollies etc... There is lots of food at the aid station, but I don't like the look of any of it...fussy fussy fussy... I take a toilet stop,then come back to my drop bag on the seat, I see the withdrawal table...The thought I have had for the last 45minutes continues... it goes something like this; phone dead, don't want to head off into the night on unfamiliar course muddy singletrack cliffs without a way to phone for help...Garmin not going to last much longer, I'm low on energy and desperately hungry for salty nuts... I don't have enough Carmans bars, I'm tired and its going to be a slow walk/jog slog from here... My luggage bags are still at the motel...I don't have anywhere to stay tonight,and its going to be a nightmare trying to get a shower at KCC... Its almost 6pm and if I stop now I can go get my luggage recover and get ready for my flight out tomorrow afternoon... This whole trip has been awesome but also I have been struggling with too little resources all year, and I can't see the point of trying to struggle on to CP5 in the dark with no phone which is a safety issue and l knowing my watch will run out of charge will mean I don't know how I am going timewise...I have 17 hours to finish, and probably could do it,but with no phone, watch going to die before CP5 borrowed fleece top, plastic pants and jacket (would prefer to have my own,but couldn't afford to buy them but at least I passed gear check otherwise it would have been a DNS), and the prospect of trying to survive on $15 for the next 3 days,I am just sick of it all...No health insurance or ambulance cover... If it was life and death, or I had a running buddy, or a crewperson, or a bit more money, or a powerpod to get my phone going again (it was in my luggage at the motel...(another preparation mistake If there is a next time I would take the powerpod in my pack...)...
I would carry on, but unfortunately as HD advised me pre-race once you get to CP4 its too attractive to stay in civilisation.... I goto the table write :phone out of charge" as my reason for withdrawal,and arrange a lift back to Scenic World...and another withdrawal joins me...I feel a bittersweet mixture of emotions...relief that I don't have to battle the night trails with insufficient energy,nophone and no watch, and without one of my jumpers...regret that the dream is over, that I have failed to take the opportunity to go the distance when my body was easily capableof sticking with it...Like Lark Hill earlier in the year I can't see enough reasons to carry on, and can see alot of reasons to stop...

Its a decison I hate myself for every day since...but in the end maybe its a wise safe decision... Maybe it was a weak silly decision...whatever it is, I now have to make it through my disaster holiday and return home a failure and go try and find a new job... Its been a hard start to 2017, and it seems to be getting worse... On Friday night when I was making calls to try and rearrange my accomodation for Sunday night, and beg them to reduce the bond amount,I had to put music on to find the resolve to get my pack packed and even on race morning I had toput music on to stay motivated... Fact is I have had a few moods of discontent and just being tired of the constant unfair struggle...Of being let down by others time and time again, the unfair dismissal at work for supposed performance issues and a whole host of stuff...I know life is often unfair in a fallen world, but there is a point where one just feels like "I am tired of fighting a losing battle"...I'm there... In the end that mental position characterised my core position at DNF point. I think mentally I capitulated to the many various challenges,
.......but probably a wise move to pullout in the end, ... although physically felt good, and able to take on the last 42km(46km?) maybe...Hopefully will get another chance this lifetime...maybe in 2018... turning the phone on to strava 10 hours ago at race start running the phone battery flat with no crew or powerpod options, the fatal mistake in my race forcing the DNF... although other minor issues a factor also...
However I'm super glad I was blessed with the opportunity to go after this race, incredible experience.

Wednesday, May 03, 2017


April 2017 Anno Domini UTA100 training gets into high gear;

My most massive mountain trails training month ever by far, some of the milestones include;
1.-10204m of Vertical gain surpassing the 8052m in January this year and about 6000min February and April.
2.-Smashed the 4000m VERT barrier for weekly elevation gain for the first time ever, after a previous best of 2656m (Bloated Goat race week in final week of March...)
3.-Double Bluff knoll ascent with Jonathan,and then a third ascent the following day to make it a Triple Bluff training expedition with Shaye and Mandy there also doing a Double Bluff. The four of us all ascended in under 60minutes.

4.-Clocking up some 12 hour training weeks
5.-Some back-to-back or BRICK training weekends resulting in 6-9 hour equivalent sessions
6.-Several 5 hour sessions in Serpentine and Wungong.
7.-Some nocturnal running using the headlamp on trails to maintain the familiarity with nocturnal running that I did for nearly 9 hours in the Lark Hill 100km race...Examples include;
Attacked Yellow River runs wild Schipp Crazytown medley CR, Nocturnal headlamp practice hiking Cardiac Bypass and jogging/walking Rocky Pool, Childbirth and Chaucer Grind
2.Heavens Gate, NE Ridge, Relentless, Headlamp...First part of Hidden Pipeline
3. Kvalley cruise with Jonathan. Medivac,Marris ladder Cardiac Bypass reversed Crazytown Super fly TNT, Powerline ...headlamp for Schipp Rd Owl? sighting...Elevator

Massive thanks to terrific training buddies J and K, who were a huge help in helping me to get there when it started to get hard to carry on.

Strava segments have played a big role in helping me develop an extensive mental map of key training locations. The discovery of the Heavens Gate/Calves youve been thunderstruck ascent in "The Gorge" was a an excellent addition to the training arsenal.

The "Triple Bluff" Bluff Knoll 673m ascents AND descents (X3) mostly on steps is in my mind the most important Triple session I have done in the last 4months.
Serpentine views from Western Summit

BBQ just begging to be fired up near The 3 steps

The GORGE and the Serpentine area including The 3 Steps and the Western Summit were other favourite training spots

Eagle ViewLookout/Park Rd/Throssel Rd near GE HWY are areas where some scenic vistas were enjoyed.