8 June 2020 – As you know I was planning on running 100km this Thursday, 11 June, to raise money for the South East Cancer Help Centre. However, because the conditions looked so good last Friday (5 June), I decided to go a week earlier than I’d originally suggested.
Starting at home in Banstead at 6.30am, the plan was to run to Hampton Court and join the Thames towpath. From there I would track the river towards central London, detour from the tow path for a lap of Battersea Park, head back to Kingston Bridge before running to Richmond Park for a final lap of the perimeter to reach 100k. I knew that I’d enter Richmond Park after 89k and could then run in loops until my watch buzzed to let me know that I’d reached 100k.
The first 42k (marathon) took me 4 hrs 15 mins, a fair bit slower than I’d normally run this distance but broadly in line with what I was aiming for. The next 20k wasn’t too bad either, which got me to Battersea Park and well past the half way point. I started to fade fast from this point onwards. I was having to walk in parts from 30k onwards so I could eat and drink. Endurance running is often described as an eating competition with some exercise in the middle. In total I would have burned about 11,000 calories on the day v about 3,000 consumed. I obviously need to work on the “eating” part!
At about the 70k mark things started to get much worse. My Garmin was flashing telling me the battery was about to die which really stressed me out (I’m the first to wind other runners up about a run not counting if it’s not on strava). I then realised I’d also lost my phone at some point during the day. The towpath was also flooded at Mortlake so I had to divert and figure out how to re-join it at Kew. You don’t want any hiccups on endurance events so this was a bad combination. By now I was trying to jog for seven mins and walk for three mins, but suspect it was closer to five and five. My garmin watch finally died after 75k. I plodded on towards Kingston at a very slow pace. Everything was hurting. I then headed towards Richmond Park and finished with a ¾ loop to meet my wife, youngest son and parents.
The last 15k was murder. I couldn’t lift my arms, let alone run. I’m pretty sure I was hallucinating at points and the conditions turned bad with heavy rain and hail (unless of course the hail was a hallucination which is possible!) I tried to film myself to send a message to my kids but I wasn’t capable of stringing a sentence together. I was shuffling like a zombie out of The Walking Dead. There was no elation at the end, I just collapsed and slept on the grass for 20 minutes before hobbling to the car and getting driven home.
- Total running time :11 hours and 40 mins
- Calories: 11,500
- Lost: three toenails and one iPhone
- Out of body experience: one
- Money raised: over £8K which equates to 400 alternative therapy treatments for people affected by cancer from South East Cancer Help Centre
Thank you to everyone who supported me with sponsorship and with messages of encouragement on the day. The incredible support and kind words from friends, colleagues, and strangers made a huge difference and was very humbling.
Nathan Mollett, director of the Leasing Foundation and director of Metro Bank Asset Finance, pictured here with his youngest son at the end of his 100k run for charity