“Donde estan los…toilettes? No. Banos?”
It had been about 14 years since I had spoken Spanish and there at that checkpoint in the middle of the night, I was struggling to remember the most basic of phrases. No surprise though – I don’t think I’ve ever asked for the toilets during a race even in English. You would be much more likely to find me indecently exposed, squatting beside the trail, than coming out of a proper bathroom. The clock is ticking, yo!
But this time, in Transgrancanaria, I decided to take a different approach. Last year, I pushed my body to some pretty hard extremes – and I paid for it (more on that later). I went into the race well undertrained, so I wasn’t going to be able to gun it ala 2017. For months after Tor des Geants, I only ran a few times a week, rarely breaking 30km. I didn’t hit a 100 km week until the month before the race, and my longest run had only reached 28km. I was honestly unsure of my ability to finish 125km, so I told myself that I was simply going to have to enjoy as many kilometers as I could. I was going to force myself to stop and smell the roses (or, more realistically, stop and smell the proper toilet facilities).