The 'rest' day in Rundu was not as restful as anticipated. There was so much cleaning and sorting of equipment, and blog writing/social media updating, that there was little time to actually allow my mind and body to recuperate. But anyway, I got back into my running shoes again after a day off, and started devouring those tarmac miles ahead of me. Here is my blog of day 23 to day 31...
Day 23 - 53.64km
I was so lucky today, to be blessed with the company of Katie for the first 5km. She is an Australian doing volunteer work in Rundu. We had so much in common and chatted nonstop which was brilliant for breaking the monotony of running long distance. I ran without my pack on my back for most of the day as my left boob was in agony. Not sure what this was all about but it wasn't fun, and the pain lasted for days which is a bit worrying. Overall, I had a whole day of running that felt really good and like I was running downhill. The joy of fresh legs! (and a day off!)
Day 24 - 45.63km
I woke up this morning feeling seriously uninterested in anything, especially running. I really didn't want to get up or involve myself in any type of physical activity but I pulled myself together and forced some enthusiasm. After running for a few miles I felt a slight need for the toilet, so of I trotted to the other side of a bush. I dug myself a little hole, and before I had time to get my shorts to my ankles a steaming serving of what looked like vegetable soup filled the mud bowl I had dug out. I had no warning this was on its way but it did explain why I felt rubbish in the morning!! I then slept through every break in the day and generally felt drained and out of energy.
Day 25 - 51.33km
I continued to feel drained this morning from all the pooing I did yesterday but after lunch I perked up tremendously! Overall a much better day, more awake and more running. A very generous chap has given us a log cabin to sleep in tonight for free, and also a bottle of cold water each!!!
Day 26 - 49.88km
Had a great sleep in the cabin. The running felt uphill all day but Mike's bike was rolling along beside me so I guess something doesn't add up there! Must still be ill. Another free nights accommodation tonight donated by Ken who is involved with a campsite just off our route, towards the Botswana border crossing. A hippo casually munched its way through the campsite while we were there. We were lucky enough to get within about 10 metres of it. Apparently this is very normal for this particular hippo, as it sleeps in the camp due to being bullied by the other hippos!
Day 27 - 38.93km
Me and Mike had a little trip over the border into Botswana to renew our visas. This was a very simple procedure: get stamped out of Namibia, visit the lavatory in Botswana, get stamped back into Namibia. Easy. Very happy to have used a real toilet not the usual trick of squatting behind a bush or tree. I managed to get running by 10:00 which made me happy as I wasn't sure if the whole day was going to be taken up at the border. In the afternoon I ran past elephants in the wild. This was incredible. They were less than 100 meters from where I was running. They are so elegant and peaceful, yet so huge and powerful. Quite a magical experience.
Day 28 - 54.70km
Today I have energy for the first time in ages, like I have just burst out of a negative bubble I've been trapped in. I feel mentally strong, and like there is spring in my step again! Last night, while we were sleeping in the tent, an angry elephant was stomping past us, snapping down branches off of trees in its path and grunting like he meant business. I managed to wake Mike up for some reassurance. We lay awake listening while it passed, and then Mike nodded off again. I spent the rest of the night prodding Mike to stop his snoring just incase it was misinterpreted as a calling to the angry elephant.
Day 29 - 56.03km
My shoes have nearly worn through, hopefully I should be getting some new ones brought out to me in about a weeks times. Managed to cover good mileage today but then the back of my knee became swollen by the end of it.
Day 30 - 56.26km
Completed another long day even though I intended to have a short day but I can't complain as the miles are getting ticked off. I am running through an area that apparently has lions roaming around so we have changed the support crew plan around a little bit. The car is now right beside me and Mike is no longer on the bike but inside the car ready to pull me in if the sharp toothed creature appears.
Thankfully, nobody got eaten by a lion! We didn't even see one.
We then had the pleasure of spending the night camping outside Lisa's house. Lisa is working on various conservation and animal research projects. I loved speaking to her and hearing about the rare animals she has seen and her thoughts on various animal rights issues in Africa. She is absolutely brilliant. I made an executive decision that we should have a lay in tomorrow. Yeah!
More blogs coming soon...