Monday, 13 April 2020

The Stay At Home Ultra Duathlon (Day 2)

Day two of the Stay At Home Ultra Duathlon got underway just after 5pm. The aim today was to run 2 miles, cycle 20 miles and finish up with another 2 miles. 

After yesterday's GPS watch shenanigans, I'd measured and calculated that to run 1 mile wold require 64.4 L shaped laps of my drive. Given that a lap was taking anywhere between 17 and 25 seconds, I found it quite easy to keep track in my mind. It just needs a constant "one, one, one ..... two, two, two" and so on and so forth.

I think I must have ran over 2 miles on each of yesterday's running segments. Lesson learned!

A huge thank you goes to the small amount of passing neighbours who were taking their daily exercise and waved as they walked past. That was hugely appreciated and really put a spring in my step.

I finished the first running segment of 2 miles in 00:22:57 burning 389 calories. That's an average of 00:11:29 per mile. I didn't find the constant 5 left turns and 1 right turn a problem at all. The whole thing felt very comfortable. I think always having the finish line in sight is a huge mental plus. Also, this kind of event still feels like a bit of a novelty so there's plenty of positives to keep you going. 

I quickly changed into my cycling shoes and jumped on the Watt bike. After a bit of research earlier in the day, I chose a flat(ish) course around virtual London. 

This cycling segment was far easier than yesterday. I think I passed through the 10 mile point in about 35 minutes. That's almost 25 minutes quicker than yesterday's ride in virtual Yorkshire!

I found the remaining 10 miles to be a bit of a chore. The virtual ride in London took me down into the subway and when I climbed out the other side I had to really stick in up the 14% gradient. I wasn't expecting that!

As I was nearing the end, my neighbours, Kelly and Jordan, walked past in the distance for their daily exercise. They had just kindly made a donation to St. Benedict's Hospice via my Virgin Money Giving page. I shouted over that I thought I'd need to be on the bike for 7 or so hours on the final day given my current pace. "Get some boxsets to watch" Kelly shouted back. That's a tremendous idea! 
I finished my virtual cycle around London in 01:16:32, climbing 407 ft and burning 820 calories in the process. 

If I manage to keep to today's average cycling speed of 15.7 mph then the required time on the bike towards the end of the week is looking like 4.5 hours on Friday, 6.5 hours on Saturday and 7.75 hours on Sunday! Oh dear!

Back to day two and the final running segment was only slightly slower than the first one. I received notifications on my Apple Watch for some donations as I was running. That really helped. 

During the final few laps I had a thought for all of the front line workers in the NHS and all of those other people who are keeping the country ticking over. Delivery drivers, Post Office and Royal Mail staff, bin people, teachers, scientists, government workers, farmers and supermarket workers sprung to mind immediately. I bet there are many others too which I didn't think of.

The second running segment of two miles finished just after half past seven in 00:23:23 with 323 calories burned. 

If I can maintain or improve on that pace for the rest of the week I should have a good chance of finishing the final day in around about 13 hours. It'll be tough to do 2 half marathons and a 120 mile bike ride in the middle. Looks like a very early start will be needed with strategically calculated refuelling breaks (and a few box sets on the bike). 

While not using GPS to keep track of my miles today, I did have it switched on. The output from my Garmin made a little more sense than yesterday's from the Apple Watch. Only just though! It looks like I jumped over the fence into next door's garden at one point!

Thank you to Dave and Lesley Greaves, Jack Houghton, Kelly and Jordan Graham, Paul Anderson and Ben Killingworth for very kind donations to St. Benedict's Hospice today. At the time of writing, £140 has been raised.

If you would like to sponsor me for this Stay at Home Ultra Dualthon challenge then please visit