Hill repeat number three had been completed and I was enjoying my reward of incredible scenery and smooth road descending. My Garmin ticked over the 100km mark and it suddenly dawned on me I’d be riding well beyond my distance PB of 180km today. I had another 5 & 3/4 ascents to go, each at 19km a pop, include the descent, that’s 38km up and down. 38 X 5 = 190km, add in this descent and I’m going to hit over 300km. Well, I came here for a lesson. It’s going to be a good one… The Why? Probably the most asked question. I didn’t have a simple answer to this, I just knew it needed to be done. I’ve wanted to Everest a mountain (climb it as many times needed to equal the height of Everest 8,848m) for a long time. I mentioned it to Flanners last month and he didn’t seem to question it so I told the boss I was doing it and he jumped straight on board with the idea. Two weeks later we’re driving to Ras Al Khaimah at 4:30am chatting life through over a coffee. This would be my 4th or 5th ‘challenge’ with Marcus and there’s no-one better in the game to have with you. Nothing is made into a big deal and there is never any 'doubting’ talk or, ‘are you sure’ chat. We both knew I wasn’t getting off the mountain until I'd climbed 8,850m, simple. Back to the question, the Why? Ultimately it came down to two things in my mind:
- If I can do this I will have my climbing legs for IRONMAN South Africa in six weeks time. There is zero physiology research or scientific explanation for this, it is purely psychological and purely thought up by myself.
- There is a lesson to be learnt here. If my head is craving such a challenge it wants to self learn.