My London 2 Cambridge 100k Ultramarathon Recap
I’ve been having trouble writing this report as I can’t fucking stand writing about running at the minute so here goes nothing….sorry it’s shit but it’s either this or nothing.
I got up for the London 2 Cambridge 100k at 6am and applied plasters to my nipples and ate Haribo. I wasn’t in the least bit phased by the distance and set out to enjoy the day. My start time was at 9am and I was with the walking group. I entered this race hoping to walk most of it back in April, but since training had went relatively well I knew I could run more than I’d expected.
From the very start of the day I was carrying my head lamp on my head. I looked like the sad ghost of a long dead miner on his maiden voyage to Hell. I kept having flashbacks to being stranded at night in East Sussex in my last 100k and I was adamant that the same wouldn’t happen again so I was understandably overcautious.
I got an Uber cab down to the start at Hackney and I was wearing it inside his car. The driver didn’t say anything for most of the journey which helped. He was lucky that he didn’t start making jokey remarks to me otherwise I would have had to inform him that I was only wearing it to perform a gynaecology exam on his dad. Who was probably dead. Which would have been tremendously awkward. Which is why I was glad the cab journey was silent.
I registered, got my race number and lanyard and after about 30 minutes of watching people doing yoga or some other mindless arse wobbling activity, we were off.
It was a sunny day and I went into it with a positive mindset. I didn’t worry at all about pace but instead I made it as easy for me to keep moving as possible as I knew I was gonna be out there for a while. It was that simple. If you’re happy with where you are and what you’re doing, it doesn’t really matter how long it takes.
I didn’t think about the 100k. I broke it down into 7x12k runs and the only run that mattered was the section I was currently running.
I stopped at 10k and had a croissant and took the photo below. Shortly after that I gave chase to a fox that was pissing about by the hedgerow. It was a cheeky wee cunt.
I started to regret my decision to start with the walkers as I approached the M25 at around 20k. The narrow towpath was full of walkers who were kinda oblivious so I ended up having to jog as loudly as I could behind them whilst maintaining a rapey sounded breathing pattern to try to get them to move.
Some bastards wouldn’t move so I had to move perilously close to the canal and if I ended up going for a swim I was gonna make sure I brought as many fun walkers in with me too.
So I jogged on and on all angry.
At 25k I ate two packets of Crinklys and drank about 2 litres of sports drink. I’d originally planned to spend about half an hour at the rest stop but since I was feeling so strong I started again after 10 minutes.
I don’t really have much to say about the stretch between 25k and 37k other than I jogged up all the uphills and was feeling unbelievably strong. At around 33k we moved into the countryside around Ware and I loved running through the trails as the ground was dry and I had plenty of grip, unlike with Brighton.
I stopped off at 37.5k and had some Haribo and a sit down for 20 minutes. I was rudely interrupted by a cunt wasp that wanted my Haribo. I jumped up and screamed like a massive twat, abandoned my food to the bastard and continued on jogging,
It started to rain at marathon distance. I didn’t give a fuck. Nothing was gonna stop me. I was enjoying myself out there and started to pace myself against this other guy who was going strong. I’d pass him on the uphills and he’d get me on the downhills. It was very good natured and I was confident that I was keeping up with someone who looked like a seasoned ultramarathoner.
I felt like I belonged.
It goes wrong.
Then I got lost at 48k. For about 45 minutes. It was so fucking frustrating. I wanted to get to 50k by 5pm and before then I was over half an hour ahead of schedule. It just all went to shit and my mind broke. I didn’t get to the rest stop until around 5:15pm.
It was only when I stopped that I noticed the pain around my old ballbag. It was quite the ache. With hindsight, it’s remarkable the amount of pain that adrenaline can cover up.
I asked St John’s Ambulance if they had anything to aid my ailing sack and I was handed a tub of Vaseline.
I retreated to the bathroom and noticed that the chaffing was so bad my ballbag was bleeding.
I put half a tub of it on my hot spot and staggered out of the toilets with my legs spread away from each other like two sulking ex-lovers. At that point I wanted to retire as night was drawing in but I continued on even though the pain was draining my will to live.
Staggering on like a cunt Rambo with a head-light.
I got running with a couple from Bishops Stortford for 10k from the 56k stop and it was great having someone to talk to but my lack of balance and agility were my undoing and I had to let them run on at 64k.
For the next 3k I was assaulted by an endless swarm of moths that were trying to fuck the full beam coming from my Petzl light. I must have swallowed at least 20 of the bastards and I swear that I’m still digesting the fuckers now.
Then I needed a piss. I realised I hadn’t pissed for nearly 43 miles after quarfing just over 10 litres of energy drink and I was somehow euphoric about getting my dick out in the countryside. I stopped in the depths of an impressive country dark and put the age old pressure on my bladder but nothing came out.
Someone had removed the hose from the hydrant.
I started to panic and my body cramped up. Then the dry heaving began which then caused my abs to started to cramp. It was absolute agony.
I tried to move forwards but I had ran out of all energy and the weight I’ve gained since Vegas was putting pressure on my back. I stopped moving altogether in what must have been the most remote part of the course.
And that’s when I heard the owls and the wolves closing in on me.
Luckily I was helped by some walkers from Rotherhithe who called central office and reported that I needed rescuing . They walked me out past 68k and I was helped into the rescue van to the 70k.
From there I was asked if I wanted to formally retire from the race and reluctantly agreed.
I was then transferred to the end of the race in Cambridge by a gentleman from North East England. As we chatted he suddenly turned to me and said “I remember you!”. It was the guy I’d ran away from in the London 2 Brighton Challenge back in 2014.
I apologised for being such a stupid cunt and thanked him for the lift.
This happened 9 days ago and in the last 7 days I’ve ran 50 miles. My stamina is back and it can only get stronger if I keep running long.
Although I didn’t finish the race I’m glad I entered it. 3 months ago I couldn’t have envisaged running 3×200 mile months back to back but now I have hope for the future.
I’m not afraid anymore. I’m running the Thames Path 50k on Saturday and I’ll run it in the exact same way I started the 100k. I’m going to give Brighton another shot next May too.
P.S. My ballsack is back to normal – thanks.