I forced myself to do my trial run today. I didn’t want to, and because I’ve been putting it off it had grown to epic proportions in my mind. I couldn’t sleep for worrying about it last night. I had about 4 hours. When the alarm went off at 0540 I got back in bed. I was making excuses; too tired, I’ll go later etc. I forced myself back out of bed and (eventually) went for a swim.

Because I’d built it up so much in my mind it wasn’t that bad. I managed to do just over 2 miles in 1 hour 18, but then had to stop as I’d said I’d run Wendy in to work and she didn’t have any bus fare. I make it that would have been 2.4 miles in about 1.34 (feel free to correct me, you know how bad I am at maths. I got the Errol Flynn ‘dashing’ gene, missed out on the maths one.) which is well within the 2 hour cut off.

I came home, ran Wendy to work *cough* dicked about on Twitter for an hour and a half *cough* then dashed straight out.

It was blowing some. Right in my teeth the whole of the outward journey. And I took the scenic (lost) route. I got to Rhyl and did some more being lost. I turned around and set off home with the wind at my back. Glorious. Except I got lost and ran straight into a ‘slow lorries for the next 2 miles’ hill. On knackered legs. Joy. A 2 mile dragging hill climb. And I was still lost so I cut across to a town that was supposed to put me back on the coast road. You guessed it, lost. But then I found it and was going swimmingly until I got to Elsmere Port, or near it, when I couldn’t see a sign I wanted so headed off to Chester. Not right, lost.

So it was a long and gruelling ride of unknown length, but would have been 105 if I’d have got it right, I fear it was a fair bit longer and shitload harder. And half of it against a tough wind.

The good news was; 1, I did it! 2, it was within the 8 hours (and I think I can knock a further hour off for the amount of times I had to stop, activate the GPS, set up maps then navigation, not get a signal, reboot my ‘phone, then get lost again. So real time was about 6 hours 50, which given the wind and hills I’ll take. 3, and by no means least, it was relatively comfortable on my arse/ undercarriage. By the end of the Outlaw I was in screaming pain because I didn’t know padded trousers came in different grades so was wearing something not even fit for riding around the block in. These cost about £70 or so but are *so* worth every penny. The difference is, well, incomparable. One is almost unbearable pain, the other is a slight soreness.

The getting lost constantly on the way back knocked some of the wind out of my sails so I skipped the marathon. Call me Harry Halfajob, but I just couldn’t face it.

Anyway, I’m sat here now, gnat-bitten to buggery (I pulled over for literally 3 minutes down a farm track to take off the ill judged running shorts from beneath my cycling shorts and have a pee and I got eaten alive) and eyes burning. I reckon I can do it now though, so it was worth it. 

Now I can rest for two weeks and batter it on the big day.

Some hard today though.