The longest run of the year so far, the Long Distance Walkers Association's Oxon 40, felt like it at times today. But bluebell woods in the Chilterns, valleys so quiet it's hard to believe they're barely 30 miles from London and a final checkpoint offering hot tea and rice pudding all helped me along.
Actually I was only just outside the 5mph pace that I regard as very respectable on these self-navigating, off-road events with their usual extra challenges of mud, stiles and missed turnings. That's pretty good given the temptation to linger at the well-stocked checkpoints at LDWA events, particularly when the sun comes out - as it did today for the first time in a very long time for the final few miles back to Henley.
My second challenge of the day was to avoid the cup final score so that I could watch the recording when I got home. I managed that one too - though I got very little pleasure from watching Chelsea win it again.
378 miles down; 1,634 to go.