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RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014 Blogs

It's getting real huh?!?!?
20-Aug-2014 09:28:05 AM [(GMT+08:00) Beijing, Chongqing, Hong Kong, Urumqi]

The very word Madagascar evokes the exotic but before I get to the red island though, I need to work my way through my ‘to do’ list…packing for the race and a little post-race R&R, closing work projects and on it goes until my final task; a pre-race buzz cut before heading to the airport next Monday evening. Breaking from my traditional ‘where I’ve gone wrong’ confession before each key race I thought I’d try and document what I believe I’ve done right? Footwear: As a firm advocate of “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” I’ve stuck with a shoe and sock combination that got me through the Gobi and Sahara deserts without a single blister. I swear by the Injinji toe sock and my foot fits into a Salomon Speedcross 3 like it’s tailor made (No Jinx..please!!!!!) for me. I use a fresh pair of socks each day and clean my feet very well at the end of each stage to keep them in the best order I can. Main Meals: After Australian Customs seized my postal order of Freeze Dried Expedition Foods meals I had a sense of humor fail and just went into the city a grabbed a swag of Back Country dehydrated meals. I’m chuffed: I like the variation (they almost taste like the packaging tells me they should) and they’re lighter. Snacks: I recalled from previous races that I became somewhat unhinged when I saw competitors enjoying a morning coffee while I started my day with a ‘dingo breakfast’ (a scratch and a look around). So I’ve squirreled away some sachets of Nescafe (and yes, I’m man enough to admit they are a mix of white choc mocha, hazelnut or butterscotch flavoured). I’ve got a small pack of crisps for a little post stage treat (the salt is heavenly) and, this time around, I’m limiting the gels to 1-2/day. I have been know to pack enough to provide race nutrition for every competitor in the Boston Marathon. Gadgets: All gone. Hey that’s another lie! I’m taking a small camera; but no music, no chargers, solar panels, books, Garmin branded anything or spare widgets ‘just in case’. I now feel a little more in control of my kit rather than the other way ‘round. Training: I certainly won’t trouble the front runners but I’m thrilled to be going into the race injury free. I haven’t had the back pack on (no..really; not once!) and am only getting through 20-40km/week (and often less) but I haven’t felt this good in a year. So no excuses. Pack weight. Across the entire mandatory kit list I’ve look at ways to trim grams. Lighter clothing and ration packs have made a difference so I’ll be curious to see what the final weight comes in at. I could have gone a lot further with kit weight comparisons, eliminating every non essential kit item (hey I’m 45 with bad hips..I like a blow up mattress and I’m keeping it) or comfort item. Besides a few small toiletries enable me to get clean each evening and that in turn improves my sleep. So yes I’ll carry deodorant and a razor…it’s not vanity; it’s all about recovery (promise!!!). Mostly I’m happy that I’m happy. Running 250km through Madagascar is not something a younger Steven ever imagined doing. Now, on the eve of the race, I expect to grow a ton from this experience and the people I meet. So I’m beyond happy that running 250km through Madagascar with so many others on the adventure of a life is not something an older Steven could ever imagine not doing.
1 COMMENTS

sean muffet

Posted: 01-Sep-2014 07:39:58 AM

Steve, solid first day for an old campaigner, you would'nt like it if it was'nt tough mate. stay strong , 10k by 10k . good luck with stage 2 and beyond. MARCH ON. Sean

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STEVEN BRYDON
RacingThePlanet: Madagascar 2014

Hometown
Melbourne, Australia

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Management Consultant

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STEVEN BRYDON
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Melbourne, Australia

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Why are you competing?
Madagascar is high on my bucket list and I love
running RTP events...combining them was a no
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