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Who watched the "Marathon Des Sables" on TV...


GrumpyOldGuy
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..tonight, d**n but it was good.

 

If anyone thinks a bike tour is tough they need to watch this event, the runners average a marathon (approx 40kms) every day across the Sahara desert in blistering heat for 5 days, covering huge sand dunes and thick sand with one day been an epic 80kms long.

 

You carry everything you need in a backpack which you run with in this blistering heat, runners core temperatures were reaching 39 degrees :unsure: daily and a 40 kms run for the elites takes roughly 6 hours, the 80 km run takes them 13 hours and the others up to 24 hours to complete.

 

The elite guys were losing 3-4kgs per day in sweat and on the 80 km run some of the elites became so dehydrated they were delirious, couldn't walk, didn't know where they were and their bodies were twisted so badly in spasms, one guy ran with his hands twisted upwards so rigidly by muscle cramps it took numerous intravenous drips to relax the muscles.

 

Most of the runners only take in about 20% of their nourishment from real food, the other 80% is powdered energy drinks over the 5 days.

 

Hectic, hectic stuff, guys would stop and punch lances into their toe nails to alleviate the pressure from blood and blisters under the nails, every toe has blisters which can go septic and they run with their feet heavily bandaged.

 

About a 1000 start, roughly a little over half finish,.....and no prize money, nothing, diddly, Nada.....just a medal.! :blink:

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Yep watched it, really is a testimony to human endurance !

Has the Sandman done it yet ?

 

I dont know, apparently its the toughest race on the planet. James Cracknell is also an incredible athlete though, I dont think there is anything he hasn't attempted in the ultra endurance events like this, and 12 months ago he was fighting for his life with a cracked skull and brain damage - the human body is absolutely amazing.

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Those okes are tough, draining blood from under your toenails every morning...Its not for sissies

 

Couldn't believe that guy basically packing up on the one day which looked like seizures, getting up the next morning and doing it all over again.

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Those okes are tough, draining blood from under your toenails every morning...Its not for sissies

 

Couldn't believe that guy basically packing up on the one day which looked like seizures, getting up the next morning and doing it all over again.

 

Yeah, Sheesh, they were seizures, his body was going into convulsions almost - did you see how his arms and hands were twisted out of shape and his fingers were rigid, can you imaging the pain of those cramps.?

 

Definitely not for sissies.!

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Not for humans....more like machines!!

 

Did not know one's body could enduyre such agony!!

 

Wonder how much permanent damage is casued?

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I dont know, apparently its the toughest race on the planet. James Cracknell is also an incredible athlete though, I dont think there is anything he hasn't attempted in the ultra endurance events like this, and 12 months ago he was fighting for his life with a cracked skull and brain damage - the human body is absolutely amazing.

James is on Natgeo tonight in the coldest race on earth. They ride those fat wheel MTB'S in the snow.

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James is on Natgeo tonight in the coldest race on earth. They ride those fat wheel MTB'S in the snow.

Sorry, i see it is on Discovery World 20:00

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The elite guys were losing 3-4kgs per day in sweat and on the 80 km run some of the elites became so dehydrated they were delirious, couldn't walk, didn't know where they were and their bodies were twisted so badly in spasms, one guy ran with his hands twisted upwards so rigidly by muscle cramps it took numerous intravenous drips to relax the muscles.

 

Hiya Grumps.really hard boys and ladies those peeps.

Regrading the sweat loss, I am quite fanatical about my weight (you wouldn't have said that when I met you :blush: ,but I am)

I lose around 1 kg. of sweat in a 10 k. run and around 300-400 grams from there to 21 k's.

I reckon it starts becoming less as you go further.

So 3-4 kg's a day could become a challenge when you need to rehydrate at night.

 

The problem however comes in rehydrating, I have dehydrated in a 24 hour race because you get so caught up with the goal that you simply forget to drink.

I reckon in running it becomes even more of a problem.

I specifically checked my run tonight, 10 km. run in 45 minutes, cadence was average 86 and stride length was 123 cm's.

Not a very hard run but consistent and I lost exactly 1.2 kg's of sweat in the run, I reckon it was more than usual because of the wind, my theory is that the wind brushes away the sweat and we simply just perspire more as a result of that.

So to run in a desert all windy with heat, that can kill a fella.

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Would love to watch this...hope they show it again. Will have to check the schedule, I take it they showed it on SS?

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Why this IS the toughest footrace on Earth

 

It covers 243km/151 miles (in sections similar to 25, 34, 38, 82, 42, 22 km) run over 6 days (7 for some) - equivalent to 5 1/2 regular marathons. That's a speed of between 3 and 14 km an hour for competitors aged between 16 and 78). In addition to that, competitors have to carry everything they will need for the duration (apart from a tent) on their backs in a rucksack (food, clothes, medical kit, sleeping bag etc). Water is rationed and handed out at each checkpoint.

 

You will have to prepare all your own food throughout the race and I warn you that there is not a chain of Tesco stores or corner grocery shops dotted around the Sahara. You will experience mid-day temperatures of up to 120°F, of running or walking on uneven rocky, stony ground as well as 15 - 20% of the distance being in sand dunes.

 

The heat, distance and rubbing will trash your feet and may cause severe trauma if incorrect shoes and equipment are used. Mental stamina probably constitutes at least 50% of whether you will complete the distance or not. Physical fitness is important but don't underestimate the mental stress that you will need to endure. Even if you have run dozens of 26 mile marathons, this does not mean that you will automatically find the MdS easy - either way you will be planning to do lots of training prior to the MdS.

 

On the 4th day, you will set off across the barren wilderness to complete a 45 - 50 mile stage. Few people complete this before dark that evening and some will not come in till after dark the next night. This is followed by the 42km Marathon stage!! Its tough, so don't say that nobody warned you in the strongest terms.

 

http://farm6.static.flickr.com/5107/5671541665_b995325321_b.jpg

Edited by gummibear
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Hiya Grumps.really hard boys and ladies those peeps.

Regrading the sweat loss, I am quite fanatical about my weight (you wouldn't have said that when I met you :blush: ,but I am)

I lose around 1 kg. of sweat in a 10 k. run and around 300-400 grams from there to 21 k's.

I reckon it starts becoming less as you go further.

So 3-4 kg's a day could become a challenge when you need to rehydrate at night.

 

The problem however comes in rehydrating, I have dehydrated in a 24 hour race because you get so caught up with the goal that you simply forget to drink.

I reckon in running it becomes even more of a problem.

I specifically checked my run tonight, 10 km. run in 45 minutes, cadence was average 86 and stride length was 123 cm's.

Not a very hard run but consistent and I lost exactly 1.2 kg's of sweat in the run, I reckon it was more than usual because of the wind, my theory is that the wind brushes away the sweat and we simply just perspire more as a result of that.

So to run in a desert all windy with heat, that can kill a fella.

 

:D - Ha,Ha, Naa, I didnt think that boet, I was thinking "how the hell do you stay so lean"!! :lol:

 

..but Yeah, I am with you in your thoughts on dehydration, agree completely, as they said on the show its almost impossible to rehydrate those kinds of losses in those conditions no matter how much you drink and you also cant keep a lot of it down.

 

The elite athletes also dont want to go on an IV to rehydrate as they then incur a 2 hour time penalty, but yeah, the medics do step in some times and insist or they withdraw you from the race, as it becomes life threatening.

 

I dont know if I saw correctly but it looked to me like some of the guys were hooked up to IV's which appeared to go into their abdomens, it definitely wasn't in their arms, is this possible, its not something I have heard of, but that's what it looked like?.

 

That guy James Cracknell is just a remarkable athlete isn't he?, mental strength like no other I have seen.

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