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Middle-aged, middle-weight, mother of 3 on mad marathon mission
Middle-aged, middle-weight, mother of 3 on mad marathon mission
When I started this blog, it was to track my progress from an occasional kayaker to taking on the Devizes to Westminster non stop 125 race. Little did I know that would start me on a long distance obsession which has resulted in my completing the 30th Marathon des Sables. It has been a strange and sometimes painful ... but always wonderfully challenging journey

This is my occasional account of a middle-age mother's attempt to take on things which are really quite beyond her.

A Tunnel called Bruce

crawlingkiwiby crawlingkiwiMar 13th 2011
Last Sunday's race had a bit of an unpleasant finish, when my K2 partner dislocated her knee as she went to get out of the boat, seconds after we crossed the finish line. Thank goodness it happened where it did, because had we been on a portage (where you get out of your boat at a lock and carry it round), we would have been completely buggered. It took a couple of medics to help get her out of the boat and to then pop her leg back in!! Fortunately my medical skills (ie, non existent skills) were not requested or required

Aside from that, it had been a good race, we keep a decent speed up on the water and our portages had been better than before, albeit still slightly slow. Fluid intake was good with the new 4:1 carb to protein working brilliantly - no more day after head-aches.

Today we didn't do the next in the series, heading off to practise the tunnel. We had heard so many stories about the tunnel ... pitch black, impossible to keep in time, scary, never-ending. The reality was better - we had cycle lights strapped to the front of the boat and head-lights and spent a lot of time paddling backwards and forwards working out the right combination of lights and where to go in the tunnel. Although it will be much bumpier during the races, we now know what we're doing and are much more confident. Best of all though was the discovery that the tunnel has a name. Going in the direction of the races, there's no sign anywhere, but if you turn and head back through the tunnel, there's lots of information about the tunnel being named Bruce (named after a lord or earl). Cue many poor jokes about going in and out of Bruce. I think Bruce and us will get on just fine on race day.

My partner's knee was still too bad to portage on anything other than locks with low exits, so we couldn't check out the crofton locks - those will just have to wait until Waterside C.

DW is still looking possible, although I'm worried about the knee's stability. We have decided to still focus on doing the DW, but knowing that at some point before the last of the Waterside races, we may need to defer doing the big-one this year.
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