Endurance Life Coastal Trail Race 29miles

South Devon, the further most point of the South Coast of the UK. A rugged landscape set next to one of the most beautiful stretches of water ever seen.

Emma and I drove down on the friday night after work. 4.5hrs in the car was a tough trek and we got to bed late. Not the best way to prepare for a long day on the hills.

We got up early, had a quick breakfast and headed to the start line. My body and mind were not in the right place after a tough week at work and many tough weeks of training. I was out there just to complete it but knew it was going to be a gruelling day.

The start gun went off and we headed to the hills. The extremely muddy hills. I plodded along through the mud trying to relax and enjoy the scenery which you can see was out of this world.  Damn difficult when you are pushing to get the legs moving and the head focused on the trail ahead.

Richard Bray Endurance Life Coastal Trail Marathon

 

Many competitors went out fast and paid the price. I slowly picked them off one by one but even with the competitive spirit flowing through me, I was struggling to stay in the game. I grabbed handfuls of jelly babies at the check points and systematically used my music to give me the gee up I needed when the big hills were in front of me. This was to be a warm up race for the Atacama but I was getting down with every mile that went by and thought my fitness was not where it needed to be. I kept going trying to stay light and dance across the mud. A tough challenge when it was up to your ankles in  a lot of places.

I counted down the KMs and was pleased to see the back of the hills when I hit the marathon mark of 42km or 26miles. I took my final handful of jelly babies at the final check point, turned my ipod music up and hit the road for the final flat 3 miles of the course.

The finish could not come quick enough and I was pleased to see my wife waiting for me at the end.

I checked in with my coach afterwards and told him how disappointed I was an that I thought I was not fit enough. His advice  – rest. The miles are done, let the body heal and get ready for the big race.  Very welcome advice to say the least!

 

Endurance Life Marathon Richard Bray

 

Check this beautiful photo Emma took on her walk along the beach. Stunning.

South Devon Coastal Trail Race

 

 

Richard and Emma Bray

 

 

Our hotel in Devon was spectacular and we highly recommend staying there if anyone is looking for a coastal break away from the hustle and bustle. Set right on the water, the rooms are beautiful and the restaurant food hits the spot. http://www.southsands.com/

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