LDWA 100 – Simon Hodgin

Part of my series of motivational messages from those who have done the 100, those who might do the 100 and those who won’t do the 100 but have an opinion on it. This is from Simon Hodgin, who has completed a few 100s. I did suspect that he was cheating, but I’ve checked the evidence and it does appear he walked them.

“”Walking 100 miles in 48 hours, that isn’t possible, is it?” That was the response I received from family & friends when I got ‘lured’ into the world of walking the LDWA 100, only a few years ago.

Far too old to continue playing football with the inevitable damaged knees I had been ‘introduced’ to the world of long distance walking by my partner & her father as a great way to get fit, whilst enjoying some great camaraderie and the benefits of some stunning countryside views.

Initially happy to walk the ‘socials’, and 26 mile routes I was soon lured into walking 50 mile circuits. It was only a matter of time before ‘the 100’ would appear on my horizon.

For many in the LDWA ‘fraternity’ the challenge and ‘enjoyment’ of the 18, 26 and even 50 mile routes provides more than enough challenge and satisfaction, but for some ‘the 100’ provides the annual pilgrimage.

I’m still a relative newcomer to the 100. What is clear from my relatively recent experience is that even with the required 50 mile ‘qualifier’ under their belts the range of entrants (both age & fitness) differs markedly. In many ways that is the great thing about the 100, everyone has their personal goal, be it a best time or just getting around the course in one piece in 48 hours.

Is it mental toughness as well as physical fitness? Absolutely, but do others, whether fellow participants, marshalls or spectators encourage you every step of the way to achieve your personal goal? Absolutely.

You will experience many emotions during the walk, many even hallucinate through lack of sleep. That all said, despite the all the pain, emotions, hallucinations and all types of weather the satisfaction of completing the challenge gives a ‘high’ that is hard to replicate. Why else do we return to participate year after year?