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August 28, 2020

Over the past three weeks ‘Run to the Hills’ has reviewed two races. In episode 01 we covered the North Downs Way 100 and in episode 03 out this weekend we review the Hardmoors 110 / 160.

In both races we saw a high percentage of dnf (did not finish). I’m sure there are many factors including not being able to train as normal with the present virus situation, the hot and varied weather and the timing of the events having been moved from earlier in the year.

For the recent Hardmoors races we followed five runners, two who started the 160 miles and three who were in the 110 miles. Out of the five only two finished and in our podcast / YouTube episode we interviewed them about how their races went and particularly what let them to stop.

It makes interesting listening and I’m sure many runners will sympathise with their decisions and reasoning.

It has caused me to think about when is it right to dnf? We would love to hear your thoughts and this week’s prize of 10 Chia Charge Protein bars will go to the best contribution to this topic.

  • If you have had a dnf did you regret it later or do you feel it was the right decision?
  • What did you learn from your dnf? 
  • If you haven’t ever had a dnf how close have you been and what got you to the end?

Kim Cavill, one of the 160 runners, stopped at Osmotherley Square after 140 miles with 20 miles to go. Kim explained in our interview that she has always had the mindset that ‘nothing is going to stop me unless an injury.’ Sadly as you can hear in the episode it was a very nasty injury that caused her to stop. In the end there was no decision to make as she needed urgent medical attention.

Andy Cole, a good friend of mine, once said to me if you have never had a dnf then you have never entered a race which truly pushes you to your limit. Do you agree? If we never want to have a dnf against our name, then only enter races you know you can finish!

I have been in races were I honestly feel runners have stopped because mentally they have had enough not because of injury. That is fine as after all this is a hobby for most of us, but it does show that you need a strong motivation to finish especially when things get tough and it hurts which it will.

I like Kim’s attitude of ‘nothing will stop me unless I’m injured’ as that takes away any other thoughts and that single desire to get to the finish will provide the motivation you need.

We would love to hear your thoughts. Please post your comments on our ‘Run to the Hills’ Facebook page by 5pm Thursday 3rd September 2020

Youtube, facebook community and podcast links below, let us know what you think?