Tuesday 22 November 2011

stage 3 - steady day

I decided to back off the gas today and take it easier today.  The stage was all uphill. gradual for the first 3 checkpoints, and then a brutal 650M climb up terrace steps in the hottest past of the day.  I got my gastro problems out of the way before CP1, had more immodium, its like a routine.  Still managed not to throw up yet, keeping my fingers crossed for that not happening now; stomach a bit dicey now so I hope its not on its way.  Today I did much of the stage with tent buddy James Love, until the last 5k.  I had saved plenty of energy for the hill, so arrived at the foot feeling good.  As a result I got up the hill in 1 hour 20 minutes.  It was steep, and hot, but managed to keep a good pace and then the finish came earlier than I was expecting all of a sudden, it was a nice surprise, everyone from the local village had turned up to cheer us.  The camp is at 1800M surrounded by terraced hills and white capped mountains; amazing.  They put a flower garland on everyone as they finished, it was very nice.  Despite easing off I finished in about 6:20 in 47th place, so I cant  really complain about that.  Tomorrow starts with a 1200M climb to CP1 (very hard!), and then an immediate descent of 3500 uneven steps which will be just as hard.  Trying to avoid a fall is hard.  A guy broke 2 fingers yesterday, when he fell, then re-set them, taped them up and carried on.  The photos are grim; he took some.  So I need to avoid a fall, and arrive at camp 5 safe and in good condition for the big day on day 5.  Groin did start to play up today, but on the flatter sections more than the hills.  Lucky there isnt much fllat here.  Ive stretched and exericised to keep it at bay.  Thanks for the support from everyone!

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