So… lots of people keep asking me questions about the specifics of the running side of things. I have the answers, but I’m just not very good at expressing the answers so people probably think I don’t have a plan. I do have a plan. I’m just keeping it all a secret. Only joking. I’ll try and give you a little insight…
My running speed used to be approximately 7:30 minutes per mile. This included training for my run across South Africa in 2011. This was mostly because I didn’t have the time to run slower as I was too busy. I have recently come to the conclusion that running faster is not good for me, it makes my muscles tight and causes me injuries. The outcome: I now do all of my running at least a minute per mile slower. I aim to always keep between 8:30 and 9:30 per mile. This is just for my training; I am currently running between 10 and 15 miles per day.
When I am in Africa my aim is to break my day into 3 x 10 mile runs. When things are going well and I am feeling fit (or running downhill) I want to be running at 10:30 minutes per mile, therefore each 10 mile section will take me 1 hr 35 minutes. When things are not so great, when I’m stiff first thing in the morning, running up hill, generally feeling rubbish, I will aim to run at around 12 minutes per mile meaning that 10 miles will take me 2 hours. If I am hoping to travel 30 miles a day then I should have a maximum of six hours running per day. And if I take one day off of running per week then I will be running 180 miles per week. A marathon a day adds up to 183.4 miles per week, so if I just run a few extra miles one day per week then my trip should hopefully equate to running a marathon a day.
I have spent many many hours studying the maps of the route and I have got the entire route distance to add up to 2584 miles (obviously this is probably not going to be the exact distance I will run, as I’m sure I’ll get lost at least once!). 2584 miles is equal to 98.6 marathons. If 10 miles takes me a maximum of 2 hours to run then the whole run across Africa should take 516.8 hours of running! According to Runners World, if I run 10 miles in 2 hours I will burn 950 calories, so I will need to take in 2850 calories per day just to cover the energy used running! Over the distance from Namibia to Mozambique this would equate to 245,480 calories I will burn. This is the equivalent of 1,014 bowls of white rice, 2,337 bananas or 4,909 lollipops!!!!
Wow, I got a little bit carried away writing this. I really didn’t intend for it to go off on a tangent like that but hey ho!! Bring on the lollipops.