My attempt for the Solo Unsupported running of the Test Way, southbound, finishing at Eling Wharf.
It was a good day for running! The first few climbs were done in largely dappled shade as the temperatures started rising. The first third of the course feels so remote for it being in Hampshire, and was very pretty too. I made good time at the start, trying to keep something back compared to usual as this was the farthest I had run by some 20km! Maybe it was a bit quick but I felt good and I'm not sure I would have enjoyed it as much at the start if I had forced myself slower.
My fuelling for the day consisted of: 1.5l SIS electrolyte mix, 500ml of water in a flask with a water purifying lid (for river dipping later!), 6x SIS GO gels (various flavours), a bag of salted peanuts, a bag of jelly babies, and a half dozen homemade biscotti.
The day got increasingly hotter and I begun to be nervous about water supplies. I still had plenty of fluid but did not want to deplete my bladder stock too much if I could help it. It was a bit of a slog to Cow Common, which I clocked at 36km in. Further than I had thought, and is the first time on the run you meet a natural water source.
Getting onto the footpath between Chilbolton and Mottisfont was a tough stretch. I didn't allow myself quite enough liquid before finding the river for fear of using it all up, and the peanuts were proving harder to eat than I imagined. I spent a good hour considering whether I should quit when I got as far as Romsey. On a better note, the Rotary Club were holding an official walk of the Test Way between Stockbridge and Romsey, so I had plenty of distractions and interactions with marshals who were curious about my intentions for the day! Unfortunately after tiredly keeping an eye on their route signs for 15km, I did take a 10 minute detour as I hobbled off course all the way to their finish line before realising my mistake!
I felt good for not packing in once I got past Romsey, and cracked open the Jelly Babies which got me through to the end!
Having the experience in my legs, and assuming I could sort my nutrition better, I would love to try for sub 8hr and I think 7:30 is entirely doable.
P.S. The doggo was just for the picture, I didn't attempt it canicross...would have probably being slower anyway!
Great time dude! Well done!!