Days 3 to 9

Day 3 Schoonhoven – Veen
Rained all day again, we got the ferry at Schoonhoven, then tried to get one at Gorinchem about 15 miles down the road. We stayed at a lovely couple’s place. The man was called Peter. It was supposed to be a B&B but was actually a house, the couple had cycled the route, they were lovely. They let us go to bed early and fed us very well.

Day 4 Veen – Spoordonk
Walked the first mile as my ankle was starting to hurt. I was lost today near the end.

I ran through a place called the Kampina forest which was stunning with great wildlife. I took a wrong turn and then all technology failed.

Day 5 Spoordonk – Borkel
This was my worst day, I didnt look or feel very strong at all 😦

I walked a little bit and then struggled on, very tough day. Ferelith said that I didnt look very well when I finished and I was very stiff.

To make it worse this was the night I had to camp and couldn’t get the tent to work. A friend named Judith and her partner came and sorted me with a physio for the next morning in Eindhoven.

We then had the night from hell in the tent, very cold and a few scary moments – don’t ask!

Day 6 Borkel – Oisterwijk

This day started well, I walked the first mile and a half and knew where to go but once I got into Belgium it went a bit wrong.

There are so many horses in Netherlands and Belgium and they always run over and let you touch them. One tried to bite me! All good fun.

Ferelith waited in a mining town called Beringen Minj – and waited…but I didn’t appear. The day finished at 18.30.

We stayed in Eindhoven so ! could see the physio the next day.

Day 7 Oisterwijk – Halem

We met the physio and he taped me up with Kenizo tape from the far east. Once we got the first bit sorted things weren’t too bad.

The support car could go on most of the roads with me and I felt strong with my leg taped.

The day ended in Halem which was south of Diest. We drove to Leuven after to stay the night in a very special hotel which my girlfriend had booked for us as we would be saying goodbye the next day for 5 weeks – it was a beautiful hotel in a very romantic setting.

Saying goodbye was harder than any of the marathons I had run before.

Day 8 Halem – Hedenge

After my rest day on Saturday I felt physically great and the first 16 miles were class along a cycle route stretching from Hooegaarden to Namur (a long way!)

I got a little lost but managed to pass through Hooegaarden, very pretty village, famous for its beer of course. All in all very happy with my body and how I feel.

Day 9 – Hedenge to Profondeville

Today I flew through the miles with ease and the only part that was a little tricky was coming into Namur, very big place. Tonight I’m staying with a lovely couple in a B&B.

Feeling good about the marathons ahead and starting to understand what people mean when they say your body adapts to anything if you persevere. Hopefully this isn’t a false dawn but I feel like its day 1 again.

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One Response to Days 3 to 9

  1. rachel middleton says:

    Mark,keep going,you really are doing a great job,still can’t believe you are doing it!fingers are crossed for good weather for the rest of your trip. Rachel

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