Sunday, April 19, 2009

Running Route 2000

This weekend we enjoyed a nice cool - some would say cold - but sunny weather, so I decided to run Route 2000, which has been specifically designed for adventurous outdoors people.

I live near dot number 3 on the map below. I decided to run the Route south to dot number 1 (and a little bit further, all the way to the Olympic Stadium) on Saturday afternoon/evening. It was 13.4 km (8 miles) and took me 1 hour 18 minutes.

I went to bed around 11 PM and woke up for a heavy breakfast 3:30 AM on Sunday morning.

Today I ran the remaining longer part of the Route, doing the large loop clockwise and then returning back home.

Before the sunrise I noticed that my water bottles were almost frozen, but the sun warmed them up soon.

I lost the generally well-marked track a couple of times, which meant I had to resort to my map and run a little longer than expected, 99.0 km (61.5 miles). It took me 13 hours and 17 minutes (including all breaks), and due to high winds, dehydration and lack of energy I was quite exhausted towards the end.

The trail was pretty challenging with snow, ice, mud, gravel, roots and lots of hills. The Route goes through protected wilderness areas in large forests. There were not many places where I could find water and food along the way, so I had to carry a relatively heavy backpack.

This is my longest run ever, even if we count only the 99K part done today, as my previously longest ultra distance was Comrades Marathon (uphill 86.7 km).

It was certainly a tough journey and my legs are a little sore, but fortunately there are no blisters and I'm very happy that I could finally make this long-time dream of mine true.

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