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Posted by Adrian Simpson
This week’s session was a bush run out the back of Piha. It was a hot afternoon and I was looking forward to a good bush run. I met Alan and Julia at the entrance of the Winstone track on Piha Rd and there was a short discussion about where we were going and then off we went, on a standard downhill walking track.
A few days before there were some heavy rain falls and the deeper into the bush we went the narrower, muddier and slipperier the tracks got. There has not been a lot of rain in Auckland in the past weeks and I could only imagine what these tracks would be like even with a usual Auckland rainfall.
About an hour and a half into the run I was beginning to feel the heat of the afternoon. There were not a lot of stream crossings so there was little chance to cool off by having a quick swim. By now we were climbing up the other side of the valley and running a good pace up the hills. After a quick stop to admire the view on top of the Marguerite Track it was onto Home track. This took us around the other side of the valley and we could see the distance we had covered.
About two hours into the session I hit the wall. I was struggling in the heat and trying to drink as much water as I could. My legs were shot and I was exhausted. This was not good because we were now at the bottom of the valley and still had about half an hour of uphill to go to get to the cars.
Eventually after a hauling my body up the final hill to the cars I reflected on what had just happened and the value of training. Not only does training help with physical fitness but it is also a chance to test out other aspects of racing such as food and hydration. The lesson I learnt here was to not only have water but to have other fluids to replace the nutrients that are lost.
For the next session I will now be a little bit more prepared.