Category Archives: By the Way

Back To Business

I have shifted the posts about the 2005/06 3100 mile posts from Blogspot to this account thanks to the wonderful technology available.

Also running has started to call again so i will keep track of events through the winter in preparation for next years Self-Transcendence 3100 mile race. Right now I am in Ottawa, Canada running alongside the Rideau River.

Rest Is Over

Tomorrow I’m going to run again. Well, make the attempt anyway. At least half an hour in the morning and then hopefully walk some as well.

This week off has let me focus on transcribing interviews that have been hanging around for ages. An interview with Tarit Stott that’s two years old is finally being worked on. Also I’m working on redesigning the Ultrarunning World magazine into the Multiday Running magazine format as that’s what works or has done in the past however slow that’s been at least it’s happened. I’m renaming the magazine Multiday and Ultrarunning World and I hope I get it finished before I leave Colombia.

But I’m not holding my breath and neither should anyone else… Some people have been waiting for ages for the last magazine. Its kind of hard to stay on top of everything when I live such a transient life. I have my magazines spread across five different hard drives and three different computers and I only have access to one of them right now.

Easy Times

After the long run and my pulled muscle on Sunday, this week has been one of rest with a little walking but no running. I took it as a message that last week was a big week that needed an easy period to recover – so that’s what I’m getting this week, like it or not. I seem to have been very fortunate with injuries and haven’t really happened that much though I do recall doing something in Bristol last year. That was from pushing too hard and fast on a 2 hour run along the Bike path. It’s pretty amazing that I don’t get any really serious injuries in the 3100. There seems to be something that acts as a brake on my speed, especially this last year I felt a delimiter. I guess my slowness protects me from too much damage. I hope I can raise that threshold this year.

The New Year – Training In Colombia 2008

I have had the opportunity to stay with friends in Colombia and I’m using this as a means to get into shape over the next few weeks for this years Self-Transcendence 3100 mile race. I have been running fairly consistently over the last three months so I’m hoping that more time will enable me to reach fitness levels I have not really achieved before.

I’m pretty sure that physical fitness is only a part of the puzzle. The mental and spiritual aspects are also essential to reaching the goal. How that will be now that our inspiration and Guru, Sri Chinmoy has passed beyond the curtain of eternity, as he used to say, I don’t know. It is our next challenge.

As in the past the goal has always been to complete the distance and if possible complete it within the time frame of 51 days. This year it seems the Australians have an even bigger project – the World Harmony Run will run around Australia so Rathin and Grahak will probably be otherwise engaged. As far as I know, the field has no t been finalised yet and there’s a good chance there will be a new face on the course again this year.

Sri Chinmoy Races

World Harmony Run

It’s The End Of The World As We Know It And I Feel Fine.

So I made it to New York and now am getting the final details sorted out on a sunny Saturday here in Queens New York. I ran the Self-Transcendence 2 mile race this morning in a leisurely 17:00 minutes. Easily my slowest ever time. But it was catch-up time with friends and I just wanted to be there with ‘normal’ runners for the last time. Many of them will be running the Fathers Day Marathon in the morning. The race starts a little after the 3100 has got underway and runs adjacent to the course so there will be lots of runners in the area.

The news and links on the race will be found on the blog at Sri Chinmoy Races

I will try and post some thoughts and notes as and when I can, here on 51 Days and Chanakhya will also post on the main section. Last year I spent a lot of time at night online and my sleep suffered accordingly so this year I won’t be maintaining the front page as much. If anyone wants to send news then email it to or sign up to create your own account and post your relevant news. It’s free and quick.

Have a great summer and we’ll back with normal service in 51 Days (or s0).


Finally got in a long one again on Sunday. It rained almost the whole time but it wasn’t really a big deal though toward the end I could feel my feet starting to take a bit of a beating. My thought then was, well this is what it will be like soon so this is a little taster.

The route I took was up over Shotover Hill, through Wheatley and then out toward Great Milton, Stadhampton, Denton, Garsington and home to Oxford. I miss the Richmond park atmosphere but the Oxfordshire countryside has a powerful quality to it that is unlike anywhere else in the UK. Having said that, it’s not so easy to create interesting routes on the fly. I had to spend some time looking at an OS map to find a 3-4 hour circular run because some of the smaller roads are not runner friendly especially some roads that have no footpath.

The post title refers to Rain Quotient. We all have our quota of rainy days. Runners have a sub-category of running-in -the-rain-days and Sunday was where I got a good% of this years quota in.

I have not been filling in the log book lately. It’s not always as easy as it could be. Consequently I have run a lot more than has been recorded though not the big miles I was a running in Bristol. Now its just over two weeks until the 3100 starts again and I’m making plans to get myself organised on time and not so worried about mileage anymore, it’s almost all over now.

Sopan has a new site that is well worth a visit though he won’t be running this year

Lessons Learnt (hopefully)

Thursday I walked for an hour and a half and this morning I ran for an hour and a half with no problem. It seems to have healed. Tomorrow will try an easy 2 hours.

The weather is still warm and dry – it hasn’t rained in these parts for about a month now and everywhere the Spring growth has slowed to a halt at the lack of moisture.

Tomorrow is also the London Marathon and there was hardly anyone out running today. Everyone ‘s resting as they should. One thing that was in the paper this morning was the news that the organisers pulled the plug on the Rotterdam Marathon as the temps got quite high and it will be fairly warm in London for the race. One thing I didn’t see was any advice to hydrate before the race. It seems pretty obvious to me that for most people, a marathon puts a tremendous stress on their bodies. Lots of advice to carboload and usually one spreads that process out over the final 3 days before the race but an amazing amount of fuss has been made over hyponatreamia which, although something to bear in mind, is extremely rare. The hydration process should go hand in hand with the increased carbohydrate consumption. Most people don’t drink enough anyway but it’s really important to flush the daily toxins we create, out. During the 3100 mile race, when it’s seriously hot, the runners can drink 5-6 gallons of liquid throughout the 18 hour period and even on a cool day its going to be at least a couple of gallons. The final week before the race I gradually start to adjust my diet to reflect what it will be dealing with during the event.  Gathering supplements, vitamins and minerals is essential for maintaining the body in good stead for the stressful conditions that the challenge of the race presents. gettining into the frame of mind where a constant awareness of how the body is processing it’s liquids will go a long way in making the experience an enjoyable one and will also facilitate post-race recovery.

Is The Long Run Really Necessary?

Loomdog asked:

Long Run – How Important is it REALLY?

There are several camps on this one and for me, it seems, the best way to find out is by reading the literature and talking to people involved in the sport and finally trying an approach over an extended period and determining the improvements or the performance at the target event with your expectations.

There are generally helpful principles and maybe even exact laws but I think that there are many levels of fitness and particular ideas and strategies will only work on particular levels.
In preparation for a long race in the summer, I am running long and trying to stretch those longer runs so that for example my 6 hour run feels normal and my recovery time is reduced to no more than an hour or so.

However these runs are faster than my previous race pace which was somewhere around the 3-3.5 miles an hour range. It is impossible to replicate race conditions so strengthening the body with frequent long runs and  shorter runs, 2-2.5 hours plus, at my marathon speed, will over the next 6 weeks at least provide a depth of endurance missing in last years race.

Last year I ran the ran the 72 hour at ATY and then in March went to Houston for the 48 hour.  After only a few hours at Houston I ha an inexplicable pain in the lower right leg that forced me to walk for almost 40 hours. It took one month or more before I could run again and the longest run from March until June was no more than 18 miles or so and that but once a week generating between 30-50 miles a week. The most frequent run was 6 miles at 85% of marathon pace.

My overall performance in the 3100 was the slowest of all my performances and this is due, I feel, to poor conditioning between January and the middle of May last year despite the long races I ran. Consistent high mileage at a comfortable to easy pace plus a good effort once  a week will build the capacity to be able to raise my mileage rate in the 3100 by a quarter mile an hour.

The long run is absolutely essential for me. Without it, not only do I lack endurance, speed and power but also the legs and feet dont get the conditioning they need to be able to maintain activity  for 16- 17 hours a day. Blisters and chafing are weaknesses that put extra burdens on close and associated muscles and areas that also overload very quickly and put extra strain on the hips and the back and the whole exo-skeletal system. Pretty soon the body gets injured and/or has to walk.


Forgot to mention a nice post I found this morning by  an American runner who wrote about the Self-Transcendence 3100. I like what he wrote and read quite a few of his posts and I really felt that the guy was on the same page as the runners.

What I’ve Learned So far – Transcendence 

Long Way Central

First post usually starts on a positive note and this is no exception. Sunday is traditionally long run day and for me the running week begins here as well.

So today my two housemates and I set off together on our Sunday run along the Bath-Bristol Cycleway (BBC). At about the 20 mile mark I was alone again and had thought about a 2 hour out and 2 back route but I was still feeling good at the 2 hour point and so decided to go a little further and make it a 5 hour run. Just as I was approaching my turn around point I could hear people shouting above a bridge. I climbed up to see wat was happening and I realised it was the Bath half marathon. A couple of friends were running so I waited to see them pass before continuing on my journey.

On the way back just before Bitton I saw a guy walking along and dragging a carwheel tied behind himso I stopped and asked him what he was training for. He said he was planning a self-supported 600km ski-ing expedition across Greenland – a 25 day trek with a friend to raise funds for the Scouts who are celebrating their 100 year birthday this year.
Checkout Matt’s website