People often ask me to write more. And when I say "people" I mean "one guy" and when I say "often" I mean "once".
It was Gary Kiernan.
Anyhoo, being a modern ultra runner is a complicated business nowadays. No longer is it just a case of going for a bit of a run quite a lot. Oh no. Anyway here are some tips to help cuddle you through the complexities of one foot in front of the other.
1 - Ask social media to wipe your bum for you
If i had to guess, statistically speaking you are probably a 40 year old male who has 2 kids, has managed to hold down some sort of job and home for the last two decades and probably knows his way around a Black & Decker workbench. However, signing up to an ultra has done the strangest thing. Now you just can't fathom how to fucking feed and dress yourself.
But don't worry, that is what social media is for. Ask questions on everything. What shoes should I buy? What hat should I Buy? What watch should I buy, What gloves should I buy? What shades should I buy? What gels should I buy? What bag should I buy? What jacket should I buy? What bottles should I buy, What dog lead should I buy?
And people are so helpful. They will tell you exactly what they bought and add the words "and I LOVE it!!".
For example. What Bog roll should I buy?
Andrex - Love it!
Charmin - Love it!
I LOVE Andrex!
Nouvelle - Every Time!
ASDAs Own all the way!
Andrex - Love it!
Charmin - All the WAY!!
Andrex super soft - great bit of shit
2. Master the dark art of ulterior transactions
Being an ultra runner you will collect lambs. They are fluffy and docile and will occasionally bleat with a like or a "good job!" With anything you do. However lambs will easily stray and to keep them close you need to give them the illusion that they are there to help.
The way to do this is to perform an ulterior transaction. For example "shocking day at the office today, just could not yet the legs going, was running as slow as 8 minute miles at some stage! Just about scraped 2nd male B52. Might just quit this".
Your words say "I'm a bit shit" but your delivered meaning will be "even at my worst I am still much better than you". The lambs will react, believing that their "wow, you are still waaaaaay better than me!" The lambs will stick around, giving you the occasional meal.
3. Become an ambassador for something - then tweet the back doors off it
I'd like to tell you that being an ambassador is as glamorous as the Ferrero Roche ad makes out, but it really isn't. You won't get so much as a delicious little nutty wrapped turd.
However if you #persevere and #gohashorgohome then I guarantee you'd at least get one of those fake tattoo stickers in the post so you can really live the brand.
Oh - and if you do somehow manage to wangle some free kit, be sure to review it after less than 1% of it's expected life. That's how long it takes to know for sure. Like speed dating. I fully recommend Trudy for marriage and children as she gave it up for free on the first night.
4. Raise awareness of something.
Hear about that guy who entered races with his own money, paid for his own kit and air fare and wore his favourite top for the race?
What a shit!
No to make it in ultra running you need to at least pretend that you are mostly running because you give a fuck about something else other than the pleasure of running. It really doesn't matter what it is because no one actually even reads what you are raising awareness for, they just become very aware of you. HA HA HA Suckers.
5. Turn every form of discomfort into a disease
There is no such thing as being a bit hot and bothered. No, that's called Heat Stroke.
And there's no such things as been a bit chilly. Nope - That's Borderline Hypothermia.
And there definitely is no such things as a sore foot. Nope. That's now Morton's Neuroma.
I am sure there are 100s more, but I can't remember. I'm suffering from down hill running induced brain cell hemorrhaging.
7. When it comes to the microscopic detail of your training, the world is your domain.
Don't be like those losers who just run without recording it, or perhaps uploading data onto strava and sharing with your own friends. No! If you can't inspire a bunch of 30000 strangers with the fact that you just ran 12.535 miles with vert of 353ft which takes you up to 56.225 miles for the month and you are "super happy excited LOL :) " then what's the fucking point?
8. If you think you are about to think a thought then for fucks sake make sure you write it in a pre thought thinking about thinking a thought blog post.
Shit I forgot to do that with these thoughts.
9. NEVER SCROLL DOWN
Remember the internet is there for you, not other people. If you are typing that automatically means that your time is infinitely more valuable than any chump who will end up reading your post. Why the hell should you scroll down? Let them write it all out all over again. What else would they be doing?
10. Pay £130 for some shoes in the same hour that you moaned about the price of a local trail race going up by a fiver.
You don't need a degree to organise a race and therefore it should not be paid. What the hell is the economic value of weeks of paperwork, planning, food buying, sleepless nights and financial risk? Its monkey work.
Rupert and Orlando used every ounce of their marketing degree learning to come up with the new name of that shoe. They honestly didn't just steal a name already used for a vacuum cleaner or a Hawaiian hooker. They totally deserve those mojitos.
11. Write a bloody book about it.
People will bu anything these days. You don't even need to be able to spell.