I decided at the spur of the moment last night to ask my son if he wants to come with me. Was he going to make it? I had some doubts about myself too. There was no telling how hot it was going to be during the last hour after nine hours on the road.

I have been working up to this practice run of 70k. In September I did a 44 and a 58. So far in October I did weekend paired runs 42 and 21, 50 and 21. But 70k is never easy towards the end, especially if the temperature is still in the 30’s (Degrees Celcius).

So we scrambled to get everything together last night and went to bed as early as possible anticipating the 2:30 alarm clock. This morning we were off at 3:10, hoping to make the most of the cool morning hours.

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10k in my son got hungry.

We had a bit of a scary part where the road narrowed to a trail and we then also had to cross a stream where they packed some concrete piping to walk over. I actually relish this kind of thing, but my son did not think it was that great. Soon it widened out again into what must have been a tarred road once.

Throughout the day we had different surfaces to negotiate, of which the pre-tar rocky surface was the most taxing.

But it was serene out there between the fields of Punjab, and we could see more stars than usual. The stillness was shattered as usual when various temples and gurudwaras woke up and started sending their songs and scriptures into the air. You are never that far away from one of these in Punjab.

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Fields were in different stages with some standing in stubble and others still untouched. This golden colour is just lovely.
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When the sun was up, my son explored his freedom a bit by going up ahead and then waiting for me. It helped me also to have some more manageable goal: just until I am with him and then we will think again.
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We had a good rest here under the train bridge. The cycle was a birthday present which he got less than a week ago.
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We could see these two colossal factory chimneys from far away.
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Our last stop for the day: Chai next to the Kharar Banur highway.

Fatigue played a significant role today, and my legs became more sore than usual. Distraction came in the form of playing funny rhyme games,  (I wish I could recall them now) and when the occasional biker would stop to chat.

Sunny (14) was sent by his Dad to find out what these funny foreigners were up to and he went with us on his bike for a while. Needless to say, he was surprised to hear our story.

I noticed around 50k that my heartbeat was skyrocketing. It could have been a watch malfunction, or maybe I was getting severely dehydrated. Around 55k we stopped at a cafe, and I got a coke and sat on a chair (what a luxury) to drink it.  After that, my heartbeat became normal again. I carried my water bladder and some Gatorade, but maybe I did not drink enough of it.

The last 10k was difficult, but we pushed through and walked only small distances.

So, sitting on my bed after it is all done and I had a nice, long nap, I feel satisfied. My son was brave and mostly positive. My running was OK, but I must replace my shoes. I am one step closer to being ready for the Great run of Punjab and the Freedom run in November and December. Book your place for the latter here.

Keep running

Stephan

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