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ANZAC Ultra 300 km Marathon

Vision Personal Training Client completes a 300km Ultra Marathon. Read more about the incredible journey here.
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By Matt Firth at Kogarah

The sound of rain was no longer as if peeled back the curtains of the camper van, the sun was just about to rise on what was going to be a very memorable run. This was about to happen a 300 km run around Canberra 4x 75km laps that would test me both physically and mentally. Breakfast started with my usual porridge and banana. I nervously went to make a second bowl and tipped it in the bin, ops, nerves and butterflies were defiantly kicking in. Jane, Daile and Richard my support crew over the next few days arrived at 7am, with less than on hour till the start. Current temperature outside 6 degrees...think if might need another layer. As if stood on the start line if was going to endure a distance that I'd never done before, venturing into the unknown. As the last post played if looked around at the other runners that were about to encounter the same experience, off we went Colin and if towards our first checkpoint 23km. 1st check point I was feeling pretty good, my support crew were all set up with everything laid out ready for a quick transition, refuel, repack and off for the next leg. The terrain of the course was a mixture of single trails to lovely long stretches of bush, pathways, vertical hills, steep declines and long road runs. I guess we pretty much covered all the terrain. I was faced we not only giant grey Kangaroos, Bulls, cows, Rabbits, Spider but also cyclist on the paths in Canberra with a few close calls.

My food during the race consisted of tailwind, bananas, rice puddings, watermelon, grapes, sweet potato, noodle soups, baby food, porridge, pasta and Nutella. I did get my support crew to keep a log of the intake, mood, fuel taken, pain thresh hold and any medication that if had taken. I worked that if had used 14,855 calories on the 300km run! Can't wait to look at the break down, I've counted at least 12 banana's As the Kilometres kept rolling over if started to lost track of the time and what distance if had already covered. All if did was focused on the next leg and what distance was needed to be covered. To focus on 300km was too daunting. The rest became a blur, you just kind of go into auto drive. By the 125km mark if had a 2 hour sleep. I honestly not sure if I slept for that long, but it was a great reward, going to a distance that I'd never done before, if was now going into the unknown ready to tackle another 75km before my next break. My feet did start to feel like they were burning, if had blister pads on my feet to prevent blistering forming, this was a bad idea. I had to run/walk for 25km before taking these off and just tapping my feet. Felt like fresh feet again. When your body is in pain it's really hard to control your thoughts and kept a positive spin.

At the 175km mark, Yippy another sleep break! Quick 30 minutes with the eyes closed was magic! However as if was still pretty sleep deprived by now my imagination started to run away with me and if honestly had trouble trying to think. I felt okay but couldn't concentrate on anything all if knew is to keep running, my brain had turned to MUSH! I didn't quite know what I was going to experience with lack of sleep and pushing the body. I did start to see things during the night with my over active imagination. Colin and if both seemed to take it in turns with something not being right, glad that it didn't happen at the same time. We were able to bounce off each other and remind each other what were here to do 1. Finish 300km 2. Come 1st female/male 3. Finish in 3 days.

As if hit the 275km mark Colin had organised some walking poles and he knew how much pain my Achilles were giving me grief, we still had the monster hill to climb! I believe these saved me for the last 50km, running when its cold was extremely hard, the body starts to tighten up and it's really hard to get going again. Wow just 25km to go till the finish line, these were going to be probably the most challenging 25km ever! It was a fight again the falling Sun. Once that sun had set and it got cooler if knew that my body was going to struggle to keep pushing out the last few K's.The last 25km was broken down to pushing out 12km before the sunset and then just the thought of finish the city to surf, easy said than done! I knew the amount of people that would be following my progress on face book all cheering behind me till if crossed the finish line. It was painful to walk so Colin said Run, your right I'm already in pain, let's just get us to the finish line was all if could think about One foot in front of the other" As we arrived at the finish line, there was our support crew, they had the biggest smile on their faces. Jane, Richard, Daile, Dianne and Tim we  all linked arm in arm as we crossed the finish line 300km done in 61 hours and 10 minutes with 1st female and 2nd male.  Everything id set as my goal if had achieved it. You can't imagine the feeling of crossing the finish line with less than 5 hours sleep. This high is going to last awhile as it sinks in of what I've you're done for Legacy! This is a once in a life time experience, there were lots of highs and pushing the body through the hurt locker, but nothing compared to our Anzacs 'let's we never forget'.

Thank you once again Colin who ran with a swollen foot just 80km into the run. What an EPIC journey that we just did together one that I truly will never ever forget. Thank you also the support of family, friends and my amazing work mates and family at Vision Kogarah.



*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.

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