Surviving KIMM

I’ve taken part in KIMM which is part orienteering part endurance race and part pure madness. And I’ve completed the race and survived which was more than I was hoping for many times furing the race. For safety reasons, it’s teams of two competing. My teammate was Konrad from EUMC.

There were photographers taking pictures. The following are from Saturday:
Konrad and me just after the start.
This one was taken close to our 5th checkpoint (things were still going reasonably well there).
Results are available here, we ended up 41st, of the 58 teams that completed and about 150 teams that registered for our category.

I don’t know where to start when describing the race. We’ve spend about an hour looking for the first checkpoint. Lesson number one was that navigation, not speed is the most important. From there things went ok, till about the 5th checkpoint. I was getting rather exhausted by then. I’ve realised that I didn’t bring enough food with me. Lesson number two was bring more sugary stuff next time. I’ve been getting cramps in my legs from then on, when going uphill. From the 6th to 8th checkpoint, things got a bit hazy and I don’t remember much, except of being worried about slipping and falling when running down the slippery, rocky downhill sections. And finally we had to look for the 10th and 11th checkpoints in the dark. We’ve finished day one in about 11 and 1/2 hours. We’ve been moving non-stop, running on all the downhill and most of the flat bits. I have no clue how much distance have we actually covered, but straight line distance between checkpoints was 37,6km for our category (with 2500 vertical meters). Finding a dry sleeping bag and not feeling hungry after eating dinner were nice surprises. Not being able to move in the tent, because of crams in my legs was not so great.

It was raining on Sunday morning. We’ve managed to complete the second day in about six hours and it didn’t even feel too bad. And I had food left at the end of it. I noticed that stuff in my backpack was wet this time. Having things in plastic bags (and not depending just on raincover) would have probably been a good idea. We had to cross rivers that were more than waist deep.

I clearly underestimated the amount of training needed and it nature of things that are important. Going running for short (1-2h) runs is probably important and I probably haven’t done enough of that. I went swimming something like four times before the race, but I’m not sure how much that helped. Going on long (say 40-50km) one day walks would probably have been a better training. And I haven’t done any of that in ages. I’ve done loads of mountain biking over the summer, but that didn’t seem to be of much help. Different muscels involved I guess.


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