Saturday, June 21, 2014

Marche Romande du General Guisan 2014

Subtitle: Year #2, 8 Kittens,  40Km trotting,  2 Wine Glass souvenirs  and a lot of Fun in the Sun.

Henri Guisan is a famous Swiss General who became a hero by successfully avoiding war.   Amongst his triumphs were as a symbol of resistance to Nazism within Switzerland.

Since he was a local to Lausanne, just north is a set of General Guisan walks 10,20, 30 or 40Km.

Whilst the main signs by walking paths are permanent all year; the Swiss military organise one weekend per year when you can walk the course more formally having your progress monitored at several official checkpoints.

Last year in 2013 Agata and Marcus made our first walking attempt  of the 40Km course.

This year we thought we thought to reduce our previous 7 hour plus time ...

We had a mild running plan:

If it is flat   ... jog
If it is any sort of uphill ... walk
If it is a downhill  ... run down

First we had to queue to get a race number.   It took longer than expected 

 We were not to know it but in the queue were 2 other /running/ competitors who would be our nemesis :-)

Initially everyone sets out on the same course

On the shortest of courses you see here a special left turn for those with baby push chairs!

One of many quaint Swiss houses that we would see on our journey.   It is almost as if houses on the route had been sent special instructions to tidy their gardens and exteriors by the local councils.   Our route was spotless!

 Our first checkpoint

Old house, new style transports.

 I fancy a morning walk on the roof today.

It is flat so we are running.  We look back at some of those others walking

 Time for some kitty whispering.

Our next checkpoint.  We notice that other pair just ahead of us.  They are running too and just overtook us!

 Sometime later,  the 20Km checkpoint.

Whilst taking this picture, we notice that /other/ running pair have run off in the wrong direction.

I sprinted off but whilst we were taking this picture they got away.  So we saw a local lady and she  said she would handle, we think by driving after them!

Different course distances split off.  They come together for the last 10Km

The temperature is mid 20's so Agata makes her first water refill inot her waisted mounted pack/ bladder.

More quaint scenes

 We think surely these displays must have been put out specially for us tourist walkers?

 Some Llama

 One of many farms with Cows

Marcus fills his rucksack bladder with water and Energy powder mix.

 The last checkpoint and less than 10Km to go

 Pretty good views abound
Come on, surely put out for us tourists?

 The Last KM !!

 Our finished dossard and control sheet.


Route Statistics

(only 1 of 2 bikes are shown)

A considerable improvement on last year (> 7 hours!)

Fluids and Food
Marcus drank 1 litre freshly squeezed Grapefruit juice, and 500 ml with a High 5 Energy Source sachet.

Agata drank 2 x 1 litre water

Marcus ate 1 Zipvit energy bar and 1 USN energy gel.  Agata ate some SIS energy Gels.

Note on Kit

We are training for some potentially much longer  ultra marathons so today we took more items than we actually needed.   You will see apart from the GPS equipment, emergency anorak, glucose, duct tape (medical patching),  more gels and powders than we would use, gloves, credit cards.

It is important that you get used to running with this heavier and bulky load else on the real ultra races you will be in for a nasty shock.

And to Celebrate therefore
But the fun is of course not yet over.   After a short nap  (always a good idea) we got onto our bicycles for a rather tricky cycle out and it seems up to dinner at Le Mirador Kempinski   Au Chalet.

It is now into the early hours so time for bed!