I should start off by saying an amazing effort to all the crews in the Talisker Whisky Atlantic Challenge who have already made it to Antigua!!! We have been watching their crossings really closely, and cannot begin to explain how overly excited we are about having our turn in two years’ time!!!
Is crazy that this journey has already been going on for two years and we have another two to go, but think we are both as excited today as we were on day 1. There are numerous things though that keep us on our toes. My knee hasn’t been great for the last couple weeks since we took part in the Dover Coastal Marathon, and can tell you from experience that being injured really sucks!!! It has however started to get back to normal which is great news! I just need to make sure continue with all the rehab work so it doesn’t happen again! Should say at this point a big thank you to Dan and the team at Balance Performance Physiotherapy for getting me back to normal! Luckily there is still a “bit” of time until we leave for the Marathon des Sables, but not great that haven’t been able to train as much as would have liked to for the last few weeks.
Given the countdown is getting closer and closer the brain has started to go in to overdrive on all the various things we will need. What is the right back pack, what size sleeping bag do you go for, compression or non-compression tops, what food should I take, what luxuries (if any) to take….. The worst part of it all is the very real wakeup call that anything that goes on our list we will be carrying on our backs!!! The minimum backpack weight is 6.5kg, but chances are ours will be more likely in the region of 10-12kg!!! So every little gram here and there makes a massive difference!
Aside from training, another area we can get a good headstart on is preparing the feet for the desert. This is one of the main reasons that people pull out and has a massive impact on how enjoyable (or more accurately how less unenjoyable) the whole week is. If your feet are not ready for it, the chances of getting blisters is massive. I won’t subject you to pictures, but a quick google and there are some pretty horrible images to go by, so anything we can do now to reduce the risk we will try!!!
As I mentioned the knee hasn’t really helped the training for the last few weeks and only adds to the worries when you wake up in the middle of the night. I am someone who quite likes to be as prepared as possible and know am physically ready for what I am about to do, but I think for this challenge it will be much more about preparing mentally and getting body as prepared for the hardships out there. This will involve going to sauna’s and bikram yoga to get use to the heat (gets up to 50°C!!), but is also about doing things as simple as sleeping on the floor after a long session, so body gets used to recovering that way, or starting to limit the amount of water consume, as it is a rather finite resource out there.
The other overriding concern that massively keeps popping up is money. Is rather annoying how necessary it is. We are both extremely confident about our ability to do these challenges and raise a significant amount of money for charities, but to be able to do that, we need some awesome companies/people to get behind us. If you or anyone you know might be able to help, check out our sponsors pagefor further information. The main aim at the moment is to get as much coverage as possible to make us as appealing as possible to sponsors. On that note we have a few things up our sleeves which we are working on and are super excited about showing you guys over the coming months.