Marathon Des Sables Day 3 Saving Every Drop of Water

Day 3 – 21.23 miles, 6hrs 30 minutes and 12 seconds, 2146 calories, ascent 582m, estimated sweat loss 4081ml

Today I needed to make sure I put my plan, which I put together yesterday, into action and I also needed to get a bit of confidence back.  I asked Rory if I could spend some time with him.  So, we steadily made our way away from the start-line of day 2 and towards Bivouac 4.

We pretty much walked the first 10km.  Chit chatting and soon my nerves were put at ease.  Here are my notes from day 3…

“With a new continual glucose monitor on and a new plan, I felt fresh.  I was seeing the task at hand with fresh eyes. The route today was much easier than yesterday, but the temperature had increased.  It felt incredibly hot. I stayed with Rory where we mixed the fast walk with my new gait – the Sahara Shuffle.  There were a couple of small jebels but overall it was a much easier day.  I stayed with Rory until approximately checkpoint 2 where I felt confident to jog the remainder of today’s route. It was, however, hotter again.

Strategizing my water intake, making every last drop count, looking after excess water that wouldn’t fit into my drinking bottles, and regularly sipping on water and with more salt tablets, my day went according to plan.


Saving Every Drop of Water

I made it over the line safely with a day of no dramas behind me; good blood glucose levels with consistently high water intake and eating little and often when I could.  I felt much better.  I got my confidence back.  I knew what I had to do to get to the end of this race.

Upon arrival in Bivouac 4, I went to Doc Trotters where I got my feet seen.  A few blisters had started to appear as it became clear that I hadn’t trained for all the walking – I was a runner but totally underestimated how much walking I would be doing.

Mark and Rory made it back comfortably and although hot we were all ok.  Craig got back and was clearly suffering from heat and dehydration.  He went straight to the medics where he was given a drip.

Di was still out there, and we were getting increasingly worried that something had happened.

After a short while one of the race officials came to our tent and said that Di had crossed over the finish line but needed some help to get to the tent (they weren’t allowed to help her as it is outside assistance). We rushed over to where she was, sat in a heap and clearly shaken up.  We took her straight to the medical tent where they assessed her.

Shaking from head to toe, a bit disorientated and not making a lot of sense, Di was clearly not in a good way.  Later on, she explained that she had found a chap passed out at the top of the last jebel and it took 30 minutes for the medics to arrive.  She stayed with him all that time and made sure he was safe before making her way to the finish line.  She was scared. She was totally covered in sand and when I asked why she said she had been crawling on her hands and knees to get up the sand dunes.

She re-joined us in the tent feeling better and tried to get some rest before tomorrow’s mammoth double marathon stage.

Camp post was incredible yet again.  It is so, so lovely hearing from friends and family. It really means the world.”

314th overall. 40th female. 12th in my category.

92 withdrawals