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Dee Caffaris Marathon Training Diary

by Dee Caffari 4 Apr 2007 16:59 BST

With a little over 2 weeks to go until the marathon, it seems to be the first thing on my mind each day when I wake. I am currently finishing my book so time is still in short supply. I finally finished writing my book last week, so at least that has freed up a little more time to devote to training.

Sometimes I find that if training is very intense and specific, as it is for an event like the marathon, a change is as good as a rest. With that in mind, on Saturday 31st March my team and I entered our first adventure race of the season amongst the fabulous New Forest scenery. We were so lucky that the rain stopped, the mist lifted and the sun came out to warm us as it shaped up to be a wonderful spring day. As we set off on our little adventure, the new forest ponies quizzically watched the numerous teams of people passing them by either trail running, mountain biking or kayaking.

It was a race with a twist. We didn’t just have to keep trekking along we had to also engage our brains too. The checkpoints were all worth various values depending on how far away they were and we would incur some serious penalties for any tardiness. The kayak session for each team was at a fixed time and as a team we were left to decide when to change from cycling to running. Where was the point’s value best suited to our strengths as a team?

Adventure racing is such a different activity to sailing, but really is a perfect reason for getting out and about in the country and enjoying good bike riding along trails and pretty scenery on runs away from the beaten track.

During the week, I had various meetings to discuss my new Open 60 build with designer Merf Owen and Project Manager Joff Brown. We were agreeing decisions with Hakes Marine the builders in Wellington, New Zealand, where she will be built. The build is due to commence on May 6th and I am very excited. Endless meetings were all helping our plans progress but it was a relief to get back out on the water with Miranda Merron again. We were faced again with Spring tides, cold northerly winds but also some clear skies and sunshine. I have been extremely lucky. The northery winds mean that we are encountering flat seas and fast sailing. It was great conditions and again I was grinning from ear to ear. The other good news this week was that our RIB arrived. This is fabulous as we are now able to manouevre easier in the dock and also it allows us to be towed against a foul tide. The engines on the Open 60 are more like an egg whisk so any help is gratefully received.

Getting back to running, I now face my 18 – 20 mile long run over the Easter break and psychologically this is going to be a huge step for me to get to the end of the gruelling 26.2 miles ahead in just over two weeks.

I need all the support I can get so if you would like to sponsor me and help raise funds for Sail 4 Cancer (1090133) please visit or

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