At 20km of 25km for the day my pace was slow. Negative self-thoughts began to creep in. “You’ll never be a champion, why are you bothering with these trails?” At the same time I knew there was no way I would enjoy the next six months if I let these thoughts wash over me everyday. I was committed, I couldn’t back out, and what’s more is that I didn’t want to. So I challenged myself…
Why worry if I am not the “best”? I don’t need to be the fastest or run the furthest. There can only be one “best” but there are billions of us and we should all feel worthy.
So our next inclination is to say to ourselves “do your best”… but would that mean pushing myself to 100% all the time? In our modern world continual growth is now expected as a KPI of success but as a society we now face the reality that endless growth is unsustainable. I can’t aim to run almost everyday at full pace, I will end up in a heap of stress injuries and mental fatigue.
My conclusion, sometimes just being there, not striving for more, is enough. And by accepting this we are free to enjoy our world and have fun.
My happiness grows in direct proportion to my acceptance, and in inverse proportion to my expectations.
– Michael J Fox
KAITAKE RANGES – DAVIES TRACK
A hop skip and a jump from New Plymouth, on the other side of the more chilled (and slightly cooler) town of Oakura. The climb up to the top of the ridge takes you through a dairy farm, past some curious cows, and up into the bush. Great views at the top of the surrounding farmland, Mt Taranaki, and the big blue.
Duration: 3 hours
Difficulty: Great training run
The premier trail from Jeff’s home region of Taranaki. Spectacular views of Mt Taranaki and the surrounding countryside. A 25 km loop through forest, alpine tussock fields and the unique Ahukawakawa Swamp. We entered via the Mangorei track which is a 5km wooden-boarded track (tough on the knees, but dry and easy).
Piece de resistance was the round the mountain section between between Egmont visitors centre and Holly Hut – very other worldly (think Lord of the Rings, Hobbit, Game of Thrones etc).
Length: 25km (35km if entering via Mangorei Track)
Duration: 1 night
Difficulty: Stoked to reach Holly Hut before dark, but sad to have such a short second day. Made up for it with a nice brunch in NP.