Welcome to my blog. The title originates when my primary athletic activity was competitive walking, but now that I am back to running it also includes that.

Not all content is accessible from the main page: for example, the rogaines, racewalking, and ultramarathon pages all include content that is only accessible from those pages.


Ultramarathons are any event longer than the standard marathon distance of 26.2 miles / 42.195km. Standard distances for ultras are 50km, 50 miles, 100km, and 100 miles. There are also 12 hour and 24 hour track runs, and multi-day "stage races".

I have currently (September 2012) completed 30 ultramarathons, plus 1 DNF at about 66km at the Molesworth Run. Reports for most events are provided below.

See also


Rogaining is the sport of long distance cross-country navigation. Events can be as short as 2-3 hours or the standard 24 hours. Teamwork, endurance, competition and an appreciation for the natural environment are features of the sport. Rogaining involves both route planning and navigation between checkpoints using a variety of map types.

GN Phillips and RJ Phillips, Rogaining, 3rd ed, 2000

The two main umbrella organisations for rogaining in New Zealand are: My reports for selected events are provided below.

Hiking and Mountains

The Hiking, Trail Running, and Mountains pages are all inter-related, but with some subtle differences:
  • Hiking is not an organised race, and may include Coastal Adventures, activities in the Mountains, and hiking in other locations;
  • Trail Running covers organised events, some in the mountains, but others on local hills and trails; and
  • The Mountains category covers both events and hiking in various places that can be classed as mountains.

  • Racewalking

    Racewalking only has to meet two technical requirements:
    • no loss of contact, as judged by the human eye; and
    • the leg has to be straight from the moment of first contact until it is upright.
    More detailed rules are here.

    I'm not particularly good at racewalking, often falling foul of the straight leg rule. But I still give it a go and here are the results of my endeavours.


    This blog is primarily about my walking activities, but sometimes I do run. Here are reports for events where I have run.

    Shorter Races

    I classify events as ultramarathons, marathons, rogaines, and "shorter events". So a "shorter event" is just something that is shorter than a marathon and is not a rogaine. Consequently there's a mixed bag in here: running, racewalking, half marathons, 10k and 5k races, , etc.

    Saturday, April 29, 2000

    Rotorua Marathon

    The day dawned cool, clear, and still - perfect running weather for my first ever marathon. There was a great atmosphere at the start line: thousands of runners waiting in anticipation, various television cameras, and a helicopter overhead. A shot of me talking with the Trentham Harriers Club captain, Bruce Grant, even made it on to the television coverage the next weekend.

    The course was closed to traffic at the back of the lake between the 15km and 25km marks. This coincides with the hilliest and most scenic part of the course. There were also intermittent fog patches starting from about the 10km mark and continuing throughout this stretch, which was really quite pleasant. The bush around the back of the lake was very picturesque, and it all seemed like a very pleasant training run.

    As can be seen from the graph of race splits, everything was going pretty well for the first 30km, with even the hills making little impact on my pace. I had intended to run the first 5km at slower than 5 min/km pace, and then pick the pace up a little from there. However, the first 2km were completed at faster than 5 min/km pace, and then I seemed to slow. For some reason, it didn’t seem to be able to increase pace after the 5km mark. However, the time for the next 20km was OK, and I assumed that I was just a little slow as a result of the cold that I had had all week.

    At the 30km mark I was on target for a time of about 3h:30m. However, between the 25km and 30km marks I could feel my legs becoming progressively more painful - calves, thighs, hip joints, the works. The pain from the 30km mark was much greater than I had expected. The slower pace from this point onwards was due entirely to walking breaks each kilometre. The only problem with walking, however, was that it hurt just as much as running, and it didn’t get you there as fast! The 38th km was particularly slow - this was on the deviation from the main road at Owhata. At this point I was looking for reasons to walk. A Portaloo just past the drink stop at about 37.6km provided a welcome, though short, break.

    After battling a cold for most of the week, I was a little slower than I had hoped for, but still managed a respectable time - officially 3h:48m:50s, although you can deduct 6s from that for the time that it took to actually get to the start line after the cannon fired! I placed 587 out of a total field of 2,465, and 219 out of 579 in the open men’s division. And for finishing, I got the finishers’ medal, the finishers’ T-shirt, the finishers’ certificate and souvenir results booklet, and a photo taken as I approached the finish line (which had to be purchased as a separate item).

    Will I do it again? Definitely. But, but not until about October, and next time the long runs might need to be longer. The training schedule shows one long run of 29km, two of 30km, and two of 33km. It seems more than just a coincidence that the race became very hard at the 30km mark. Although this coincides with the “wall”, and the point at which glycogen supplies start to run low, longer training runs should help mitigate the pain and need to walk in future races. A bit of speed training might also help, as completing the first 30km in less time should leave more in reserve for the last 12km.


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