Fifty one miles around Derby in the Long Eaton Running Club's low key but ultra friendly ultra on Saturday really took it out of me. Sometimes I hate running through fields, especially when the footpaths are lost under crops, the stiles are lost in hedges and your feet are leaden with mud. The idea that I'm doing double this distance in less than six weeks time, with 6,000 metres of mountains thrown in, seems barely conceivable. The fact that according to the race organiser there were '130 stiles on the route adding 500 feet of climbing to the 2,500 that nature provides' doesn't feel like adequate preparation.
Still, I managed another ultra on Sunday - an ultra-slow 10k (54.45 since you ask) at the ultra-lovely Locko Park. This private estate played host to an oddly low-key fundraiser for the Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland air ambulance. Maybe the estate owners kept the numbers low deliberately but there couldn't have been many more than a hundred of us there and the man with the microphone was reduced to telling us how lonely he felt.