Scenic Circles Backyard Ultra

On the 2nd of September Timaru put on a beautiful spring day. The buzz was obvious with the start
time looming, and count down was on until The Scenic Circles Back Yard Ultra kicked off for the very
first time. Tents of all kinds start to pop up and for Chris and I it was our first Gazebo setup so we
were very much enjoying that first time buzz just like the other 60-80 folk gathering at the reserve.
The trail was a mix of hard packed walking track, single trail with some mountain bike routes, all
open and beautiful scenery. The temperatures were mild and perfect for runners.

The days loops started with lots of chat and energy amongst the lappers . Into the dusk , effort came
on for most , the breathing around me had a notable change as people were finding their limits and
pushing past them (the main attraction about doing these Backyard Ultra formats ).
Night time came around quick and soon enough we were on the night time loop , heading off into a
different direction to pound the tar seal .

For a majority of the runners still going, the road was new territory, trail being the preferred option
however a change of shoes and very runnable hours ahead, it was nice to change up the route.
Soon enough, every one found their ideal pace. A few of us opting to go together with a plan being
implemented and vital move for all us getting through the dark hours . 7 minutes jog to start and
warm the legs up again, then a rotation of 2 minutes fast walk , 3 minute jog , with the exception of
walking the hills to the end getting us coming in about 52-54 minutes per lap .This worked wo well ,
getting all us past the witching hours and into sunrise . Working together really does make a huge
difference in how much longer you can go.

Yard 24 , the miler . A familiar place, everything hurts, but it becomes the normal, it does not get
worse each lap it is just a constant . At this point it feels better to keep moving than to actually sit
down. The hardest place to be in in your chair in your support tent . For myself I pass my previous
best in the BYU realm, having no plan and on a whim to come down and launch ourselves and the
new business venture I had no goal just to go further than before and to enjoy it . And ENJOY it I did!
The 5 before me were incredibly strong. I make the call at hour 27 to call it, walk back to base (never quit in the chair being number one rule) Taking stock of the event , the effort , the banter
through out and the new friends made and most importantly self relection and learnings going
forward .It really is quite a feeling when you have made that decision. The reflection post-race is
always such a special moment.

174.4 km clocked and super chuffed with this, final 6 and 2nd female finisher being at the end of the
pack is quite new to me and somewhat invigorating. Focus now is to pack up and make moves back
to the North and chase that recovery so we can do it all again in November at Arrowtowns’ Inaugural

A big win by the legend Glen Sutton with 37 yards 248.3 km ! and he was still fresh on his feet – Inspiring. I am so excited to see what he and the other 15 athletes pull out at the World Satellites event in October 2024

Be sure to sign up to Scenic Circles September 2024 ! A very well run event with the best race
directors and volunteers not to mention the awesome awesome competitors!

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