Saturday, 14 May 2011

The ITEX Walk is Go!!!

After our Finland write up we promised to let you know what our next adventure or challenge was going to be. There has been a little bit of a delay while my knee gets checked out and I’m pleased (?!) to say our next challenge will be…

The walk is a gruelling 48 miles round the coast of the Island, taking in flat expanses of sandy beaches, the notorious ‘ups and downs’ of the North Coast cliff path and a few boring road bits (that are mainly covered in darkness)

So at 3am (yep that’s AM) on Saturday 18th June we’ll be lacing up our hiking boots and setting out from Elizabeth Harbour.

Now those super athletic types out there are probably going- “so what- 48 miles pah that’s nothing” but let’s put a little perspective in here. 48 miles is almost 2 marathons, it’s not all on nice flat, smooth tarmac and some of those climbs out of the bays on the North Coast are killers! Also, the furthest either of have walked in one go (so far…) is 20 miles on the North Coast, the actual walk is more than double that and remember we have to start at 3AM!!!

Ok, so training so far… we started our walking training back in January on a misty New Years Day with a casual 8 miles wander through St Peter’s Valley and since then miles, and blisters, have been increasing weekly.

Unfortunately, the week after returning from our Finland trip, my knee which I have injured several times snowboarding and cycling, began causing great pain so I have been forced to reduce mileage. Ben however has carried on and last week completed the 20 miles of North Coast that I previously did in the 2009 North Coast Challenge.

After a visit to a specialist it seems I have done some rather long lasting damage to the cartilage and whilst it is painful and makes horrible cracking noises, the good news is in the short term I can’t do more damage although I will more than likely be going into surgery later this year to help reduce the pain. So several ibuprofens and a whole load of will power will at least see me as far as I can go… and I’m still dreaming it may be the end?!

Realistically though I will be going for as far as I can get, if that’s the end then fantastic but on average only 50% of starters complete the walk, the objective is not necessarily to finish it but to reach your own personal goal. So there will probably be a stage in the walk where you’ll find me curled up on a path/ beach/ roadside, shovelling in chocolate and crying for my mum...

Of course we will also be raising money for 3 local charities. Since the start of the walk in 1991, £1559.234 has been raised. This year we will be walking for The Abbeyfield Jersey Society, Age Concern and Silkworth Lodge. We will have a link on our blog soon if anyone reading would like to donate!

I’m pretty sure though that as long as he doesn’t suffer from heatstroke J (see JOGLE blog) Ben will be in that 50%, once he has a goal set that’s it. He’s also looking really strong and while I finished the North Coast the other year a gibbering wreck craving burgers Ben looked like he’d just had a stroll around the park!

So, instead of boring everyone with trip by trip training stories here’s a summary of the stats so far… (based on Sarah’s heart rate monitor)

150+ Miles

55 Hours and 15 minutes

25400 Calories (= a lot of chocolate cake)

We will now be keeping up to date with our training- Saturday is going to be a 20 miler including cliff paths and a 5 mile beach. We have been told that the long flat beach at 3/4 of the way around is a real mental battle with many people dropping out at the end, so we're going to walk it again and try to break the boredom!

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