July – Dec 2016

29/11/2016 – YYYOOO!!!!  What is going on one and all!  How exciting and awesome is life!  Things are absolute madness at the moment but I love it!  Everything is really hotting up for the shop and hopefully my lease will be ready tomorrow…..then the demo begins and fit out!  I am ordering, making phone calls, emailing and making a million lists but it is beautiful!  We are doing all we can to be open by Christmas but it is gonna be a push!  KEEN AS A BEAN!  Well see how we go!

Tomorrow is the last day of November though and the last day of my Go Fund Me campaign.  If you or anyone you might know would like to help an aspiring, passionate entrepreneur get his dream going, please spread the love!  The offer still stands as far as free coffees and 10% donation to Kai’s child sponsor program go, so not only are you helping open ‘The Journey’ you are getting awesome brews and making a difference in some kids lives!  Win win win!

Thanks so very much for your support, love, kind words, encouragement and honesty in helping me chase this dream!  I really can not believe it is happening and I CAN NOT WAIT for the madness to begin…..more like continue!  Go to https://www.gofundme.com/3z-the-journey until tomorrow night!  Much love, peace, plants, love, mindfulness, compassion and adventure!

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25/11/16 – Hay guys!  Hope all is super!  Quick one with some updates and exciting news!

As some of you might or might not know, I have been made the ambassador for an amazing new race next year Down Under 135.  It is going to be and incredible 135mile trail adventure just outside Melbourne in April next year.  The boys organising the race know the  creator of Trail Run Magazine and long story short, this weekend, they are flying me down to do a photo shoot on the course and interview for the magazine!  I am incredibly humbled and honoured and can’t wait for the fun to begin!  Good times!  If you click on the hyperlinks above, you can find out more about the race and also the magazine.  Both amazing!

Secondly, I have been so stoked and blown away by the response thus far to the Go Fund Me campaign running for the opening of my specialty coffee/health cafe.  I have decided, after some coaxing from friends, to leave the campaign run until the end of November, so if you can, or know any keen backers wanting to invest in a new and exciting start up, please pass the link and details on!  You can find the page here or at https://www.gofundme.com/3z-the-journey

Thanks so much friends!  Hope and pray this finds you well and hope to hear from you soon.

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19/11 – Man, where does one start with a blog on running 200miles (320k!).  I am not exactly sure but I think I will use this platform to comment on a few things, answer a few common questions I have got and generally rant about what was an EPIC outing!

So, since hearing about 200mile events about a year and a half ago, I haven’t been able to get the thought out of my head….’what would it be like to move as quickly and efficiently over that distance?’  So, after much pondering, planning and consideration, I decided that on my 34th Birthday I would set out to run from my home in Bargara to Kai Coffee Rostery in Warana on the Sunshine Coast.  As most of you probably know by now, I am soon to open my own specialty coffee shop and I am getting my beans from Kai, thus the final destination.  It just so happened that it was nearly crack on the distance too!  Winner winner tofu dinner!

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One of my favourite pics from the trip. The calm before the storm.

I was possibly a little under prepared (from a logistical point of view, not physical) for this event as I have been ridiculously busy organising stuff for the cafe.  I did however have an awesome crew in my mate Andrew, Ambo and good friend Terry, my ever awesome Dad and another mate Rod to meet me on Friday sometime.  With these guys, how could I fail, just wing it…..its just a short run right!?

So, after much discussion, packing and crew meetings, at 4am on the 10th of November, 2016 we all met at my place and casually head off for the start of this adventure.  I had my good friend Nix join me for the first bit of the run so this was nice to ease into things.  Once she left I fell into a good routine and the crew quickly found their feet.  Day one was HOT….like we recorded 41deg celsius on the car thermometer!  It was so hot the bitumen was melting and when I stood in patches my shoe print would remain!  This was to be a big issue and one that would slow me down a little, destroy my feet and make nutrition incredibly important!  We quickly came up with a strategy to keep my core cool.  This involved wearing a cotton shirt and keeping it soaked, a hat which would get soaked every stop and wearing a buff (neck bandana) and putting ice in it every stop.  This plan saved me in the heat and certainly contributed to the trips success.

Q.  What did you eat and drink?

Well, this varied a little between the day and night but generally I had a bottle of fluid every 35-50min (stops) and alternated between water and sports drink.  Then at the car I would have another few cups of fluid (water, sports drink, coffee or soft drink), an electrolyte tablet every hour and eat at each stop.  My food ranged from gels, bars, sandwiches, wraps, chips, fruit, soup, noodles,  home made slices and cake.  I don’t remember an event where my nutrition was so spot on.  I really have Terry to thank for this and if it wouldn’t have been so on point, I wouldn’t have made it!

Throughout the first day I had Andrew and Dad join me intermittently however I was trying to get them to save themselves as I knew I would need them through the night and later in the trip.

Q.  How were my feet?

Well, on day one, just outside Aldershot, my left foot felt like a massive blister pushed out the front of my foot, toward my toes.  It was incredibly painful and I honestly thought I was going to have to walk the rest of the way.  This later also happened to my right foot and again, was incredibly painful.  Given Terry’s medical training, he was able to keep my feet clean, patched up and taped.  I have never had to do this before but again, if I wouldn’t have done this and taken the time to air them out at ‘sleep’ stops, I think I would have been stopped in my tracks!

Toward the end of the first day, an old mate Marty came out to see us a couple of times which was awesome for some banter and laughs.  We thought we would make Maryborough by dark but it was pretty apparent this wouldn’t happen.  After some dinner we eventually got off the highway (thank you Jesus!) and tried to avoid the ‘special’ people out on a Thursday night in Maryborough!  Oh my gosh!  Dad had joined me on the road at about nightfall and would keep me company for some time!

Q.  How far did your Dad do with you?

Well, just over 200km!  He is a mad man but I am so super grateful to have had him with me and I wouldn’t have made it without him.

The first night was relatively un-eventful, just trying my best to keep moving.  The heat sucked the energy out of me through the day so we thought it best that I have a little break/sleep before sun up.  I laid down on the swag for about an hour, aired my feet, ate when I woke and then got back on the road.

Q.  Did I sleep?

Yep, I had an hour the first night, about 45min restless sleep the second afternoon and an hour and a quarter the second night.  So, three hours in total.

Upon getting going again the second morning, I was surprised that my legs and body felt pretty good again.  This was the case after every sleep, I would wake up pretty refreshed and full of running.  This section I again did with Dad and enjoyed the hospitality of the logging trucks.  They were great with giving us room on the road.  Through this period, Rod joined us and we made some good time.  Even with our stops, we covered 50k in eight hours.  Happy with that!  After a little further distance to the next major turn, I had my second little time out and let my feet air out.  Pretty much the whole way they were painful but I slugged through.  Thats what we ultra runners do!  After waking up and having a massive vege burger I was off again.

This section of the trip was stunning!  Beautiful countryside, national parks and rolling countryside.  I got a lovely surprise through here from my mate Jody and it was good to see him for a little catch up.  A little further down the road, I got the surprise of all surprises when my friends from Emerald, Meagan and Sammy turned up un-announced. It was SO great to see them and share some k’s together.  Another surprise visit from good family friends John and Helen happened and kept my spirits high.

Again at nightfall the wild man joined me and we were to slog together through to the start of the Sunshine Coast.  At one point, Andrew was also with us and a large tiger snake was standing up, only a few meters ahead of us, ready to strike.  If I needed any waking up, this did the job!  Eventually he got off the road and the adventure continued.

Q.  What way did you go?

We went the back way to Childers and along the highway to Maryborough.  From there we went the back way to Tin Can Bay before heading back toward Gympie.  Before reaching town we turned off and went the back way (I believe Pomona Kin-Kin Road etc) through to Tewantin.  We then followed the David Low Way through to Warana.

I was starting to get pretty tired through this section but eventually made the decision to try and get through to Tewantin before having a lay down.  I didn’t quite get that far as the section from 10k-5k out I think I spent more time with my eyes closed than open!  I was STAGGERING all over the road and was prepared to literally lay down on the bitumen and sleep!  I was never so happy as to see the support car at that point for my last sleep stop.

After waking and re-strapping my feet again, it was time to finish this bad boy!  Although I still had just over 50k to go, I was so close in the big scheme of things I knew I was going to make it.  My good mate Tim came out to see me as I was coming into Noosa and we managed to have a quick chat while I kept moving.  Once we hit David Low Way, I met up with best bud Jason and later Clint, Lisa and the kids.  These boys kept me company and I really appreciate them hanging with me, even though I was slow.  We met Anna (Jasons wife) at Mudjimba and upon getting up from this food break, the body started to break.  My knee which had been hurting on and off through the run cracked it.  I could not run, I could barely walk!  It was so painful!  This was about 25k out so it was going to be a little bit of a slow slog in.  Later I was  able to shuffle about 20steps but that was my limit.  I continued to have friends join me along the way including our good friend for a number of years now, Lionel joining us on his bike at Maroocydoore and it was awesome to have his positive energy the rest of the way. The coastal part of the trip was enjoyable but a tad disappointing as I would have loved to have been running.  My knee just wouldn’t let me.  We had a great time though again catching up with Tim and Lisa and plenty of waves and chats with bike riders and runners along the way.  Eventually we got down to Kai and I was ready to be DONE!  Sean (the owner) did a great job of organising a little party and once the running was done, we sat around, ate some food, had some brews and un-wound.  What an adventure!

I ended up completing the 320km journey in 57hrs 30min.  In reflection, I really can not believe I made it and that it really even happened!  I am really proud of myself and honoured that I got the opportunity to attempt such a big feat.  I want to apologies if I forget anyone but I just want to say a massive thanks to my crew.  This was a team effort and I wouldn’t have made it without you.  My family for their support and my friends who met me along the way.  Sean for hosting us for the finish and Jason and Anna for having all us stinky boys stay.  A HUGE thanks to James, Pete and Karly of Costi Farms (best macadamias round!) for their on-going support.  Without your sponsorship, this event would have been extremely difficult so from the bottom of my heart, thank you for believing in me enough to help me attempt and achieve my adventures!  If any of you want to see more photos or video, please of to my Instagram of Facebook at Adventures and Activism I would love your follow and there are some crackers on there!

I think this one will take a while to unwind from but what a memory it will be for a life time!  I can’t believe I made it!  If there is anything I have learnt in life its that if you want something enough, set your mind, body and spirt to it and get after it!  Dont let anyone tell you you can’t do something you want to!  Life is an adventure to be lived, so whatever you want to chase, go hard at it and give it a crack.  If you fall short or fail, re-assess, come back stronger and do it!  You are incredible and I believe in you!  Life is short, go get it!

Lastly, I mentioned that I am in the process of opening a specialty coffee shop/health cafe in Bargara.  This has been a dream of mine for about 4-5years now and it has been a challenge in itself, but it is happening!  As part of the run, I have launched a Go Fund Me page where you can help sponsor some kids by my donating a portion of donations to Kais program, get yourself some free coffees dependant on how much you donate and also help my dream become a reality!  Please consider donating and please share the link around.  I am closing the campaign Thursday so PLEASE do what you can.  If you click here or share this link https://www.gofundme.com/3z-the-journey you will find out more info and how to donate.

Thank you all individually for sharing in all my antics!  I am hoping to have the shop up and running by Christmas or at the latest VERY early in the new year so the adventures will slow up a little.  But don’t worry!  There will still be plenty of antics The Tattoo Runner will get up to!  Much love my friends!  Have a rad weekend and hope to see you soon!

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9/11 – Tomorrow I set out to run from Bargara to the Sunshine Coast – 200miles or 320km!……in other big news, I am also opening a SPECIALTY COFFEE SHOP!  This run tomorrow starts on my 34th birthday and is the beginning of a new chapter in our lives!  If any of you would like to be involved, please check out my Go Fund Me page, donate if you feel led to and PLEASE share around to anyone you think would be interested in helping out!  Just click on the link below!  Much love y’all, the link is below!

https://www.gofundme.com/3z-the-journey


8/11 – Ohhhhh, here we are!  Two sleeps out from the longest continuous run of my life!  I am , for those who don’t know, aiming to run from my door step at Bargara to Kai Coffee roastery on the Sunshine Coast…..200miles or 320k, whichever sounds better!  Ha!  I am excited, nervous, keen, ready, anxious, and pretty much any other emotion you can conjure up!  I have had some pretty emotional personal stuff go on this week too so I am looking forward to a nice long run to do some thinking!  It is going to be epic and I have a great crew on board so that will make it all the more enjoyable!  Im gonna have dad, Terry, Andrew, Rod, Jason and Anna and any other posse that joins along the way.  These guys and girl will make the journey as smooth as it can be, supporting me like no others.  I am so grateful for their help and crewing for this adventure.  I am hoping the guys will post on my social media along the way so if your keen, follow along on Facebook and Instagram (Sandy Grills and Adventures and Activism)  Good times.

As a side point, I am pretty sure I have decided to abandon Coast 2 Kosci for this year and give my body, mind and spirit a little rest after the 200.  After not finishing Nerang, The Super Slam hasn’t held such importance for me, however, I have a feeling it will return next year in a different, all be it just as big a capacity!  So watch this space as usual!  I have some exciting running related things happening in the next month or two so they should keep me buzy anyway!  Lets just say they involve a magazine!

Last week I was also officially announced the race ambassador for Down Under 135.  A 135mile trail adventure starting just 60k outside Melbourne at the start of next year.  I am honoured, stoked and super keen to smash in some good training and put in a good performance at this event.  The boys have done a wonderful job thus far getting things sorted so I have no doubt the event will be a cracker!  They have allocated me bib number 1 so I had better perform!  If any of you are keen to see what it is all about, check out their Instagram account for some cracker videos or go to http://www.downunder135.com.

Appart from that, life is ticking along!  I am almost prepared and soley focused on the pending distance waiting for me on Thursday, my 34th birthday!  I hope y’all follow along and can enjoy from afar the madness that will unfold!  Much love peeps!  Peace and prayers, Mat

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31/10 – Well, I know I have been in hibernation for a little while, but for good reason!  I have had a heap of stuff on the go since my last post but thought it about time I got myself sorted and posted on here!  Better now than never right?!

So, after Nerang it too me some time to recover!  I felt not too bad day to day but really tired running.  Even after my mandatory week off it took me a good two to three weeks to feel ‘normal’ again.  The couple days straight after were pretty difficult mentally having to re-tell the story to customers at work but hay, it is what it is!  Now, I am feeling good, got a couple solid weeks of training in and just started a 10day ‘taper’ to get ready for the 200miler!  Keen as a bean!  This challenge is going to be an epic test and I am super excited to get amongst it!

To be perfectly honest, I have had so much other stuff going on that I haven’t really had too much time to think about it!  I have my route sorted, some gear but apart from that, I am basically going to take it easy, move as quickly and efficiently as possible and try and enjoy the journey!  This will be my redemption run after Nerangs bomb out.

As far as everything else going on in my life and the ‘business’, I will be able to reveal more about all that in the coming week.  Lets just say my world has been literally jam packed from 3am to 8:30-9pm EVERY DAY!  Madness!

Anywho, just a quick little catch up friends to let y’all know I am alive, kicking and loving life!  It has been a test to regroup after Nerang but I feel I have done that, moved on and ready for my next adventure.  I hope and pray this finds you all ripper and chasing your dreams!  Much love!  Peace!

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4/10 – We have just got back from the Gold Coast where I took part in the second race of The Super Slam at the Nerang 100miler.  And wow!  What an experience!  For those who aren’t familiar, this race was six lolly-pop loops of 25k with two five-ish k out and backs to make up the 161k.  I think a loop by loop recount might make things easier…..but be prepared, this could be a long one!

Loop 1 – I went into this race excited mentally and physically ready to go!  After finishing Glasshouse 100 only three weeks ago, I was pretty happy with how  the body and mind was doing.  I started the race and settled into second position.  I felt like I was taking it easy most of the lap, getting to work and having a look over the course.  I was a bit shocked to realise I came in from loop one in a little over 2hr40min (each lap had just under 1000m of climbing so that was a decent clip!)…..far too quick but it felt pretty good.  I didn’t drink as much as I should have but wasn’t too worried as it was early.  I was also pretty darn disappointed to come in and see very little food/drink at the ONLY manned aid station on the course.  No harm no foul…..a quick stop and off I was.

Loop 2 – I did something I have never done in a race before and decided to listen to a couple of podcasts.  I do this in training and did enjoy it throughout this loop.  I started to do it a little tough on the second half of this loop, got hot, did my best to keep myself wet the rest of the day and battle through.  I caught the leader on an out and back but didn’t push to stay with him.  I kept plugging but came into base a little dusty after finishing loop two and 50k.  I did however pick up a little human here to keep me company for the next two loops.

Loop 3 – That little human was my good mate Luke.  We took it a little easy through the first half of this loop and I came a little better. We got some good running in, spoke a decent amount of rot and real life stuff and enjoyed each others company over a few k’s.  We rolled into base strongly and I was feeling like things might have been turning around.  We did a little out and back at the end of this loop which went by without a hitch.  Half way (80k)….not glamorous but solid.  Still in second.

Loop 4 – We grabbed our headlamps and took off.  The first half of the loop went ok although I had been noticing that my kidneys were a little sore through the afternoon.  I did my best to put that in the back of my mind however was aware that was a pretty decent sign of dehydration.  I had also been struggling to get enough food and drink in for sometime, but was trying to force it down.  This was probably going on longer than I give it credit for and in hindsight, a sign that things were starting to unravel!  The second half of this loop I did it a little tough as well, feeling a bit nervous to be meeting up with Jason who had to drag me through the back half of Glasshouse 100!  I had really enjoyable time with Luke and am so grateful that he gave up his time (and the AFL grand final) to come run a couple loops with me!  I was a little shocked to come into base at the same time as the leader but at the same time, did my best to ignore that and run my own race.  Again, I attempted to get some food and drink into me but it was a battle that is for sure.

Loop 5 – Jason and I left this loop with the leader and within a short amount of time put some decent distance on him.  I was feeling ok but still not really able to eat or drink much.  It is hard to explain to a non-runner but I had basically got to a point where the thought of drinking ANY liquid or eating ANY food had ZERO allure.  The thought of it nearly made me vomit!  I managed to battle through the first half of the lap, still moving ok but my stomach and general well being declining.  After the half way point in this loop, things went bad, quickly.  I started feeling funny in the head (kind of dizzy and space).  I hadn’t eaten or drunk really anything in about 4-5hours and really needed to sort my stomach.  I have heard that spewing can help reset your stomach and have never vomited in a race but I was getting desperate.  Again, in hindsight, this may work for someone not seriously dehydrated!  In an almost last ditch effort to restore my body, I spewed and the most vile, disgusting, black tar came slowly out of my body.  I was shocked at what I saw.  About half an hour later, another vomit ensued, this time with the little liquid I had drunk since the last spew and another decent amount of black tar.  I was later told this was most likely stomach lining.  Awesome.  From here, things disintegrated VERY quickly!  I was able to walk but VERY slowly, staggering from side to side and slurring my speech.  I laid down on the trail about three times and it took everything in me to stagger the one and a bit k’s to the last water station.

Once arriving, there was five k back to the base.  I considered trying to get back there, sleep, try and eat/drink and get back on the course to finish.  I had plenty of time.  However, the thought of walking that far, on technical trail in the condition I was in was un-fathomable.  I just couldn’t get my head around it and my stomach/physical condition was BAD!  After some time, and much deliberation, I decided to call it in and withdraw from the race.  I want everyone to know, especially my kids, that this decision was not made lightly.  I don’t believe in quitting things I start but with a wife and two young girls, I set a precedence some years ago that if I was ever in fear for my long term health that i would drop out of an ultra…and thats where I was.  I was SO disappointed and embarrassed to be dropping when in the lead and in that condition!

At this point, I was also starting to get cold so I sat in the port-a-loo to try and get warm.  Jason ended up getting me an extremely attractive female active wear top which I looked really awesome in!  Now I am usually a happy, cruisey guy with the odd joke….but, I vividly remember sitting in the toilet, cracking jokes, thinking I was the best comedian on earth!  Jason later told me that I was talking to the mosquitos, telling random stories and generally speaking rot (not much different to normal right?!)  He told me that someone would be  out to pick me up in 30-40min and I put my head on the sink.  It seriously felt like about 5min and they were there!  Apparently Jason was checking on me and I was telling him stuff but I remember none of that!  I was on another planet and I was the president that is for sure!  After a short trip back to base, getting shivering cold and feeling super sick again, I was checked out as best I could be and it was decided that I should go to the hospital.

Upon arriving, the guys at Robina A&E were amazing!  They got me straight in, did my bloods and started me on IV.  Now, the reading they use for kidney damage/rhabdomyolysis is CK, and a normal reading should be between 30-150….mine was just over 5300!  No that is not a typo!  So I clearly had rhabdo but the good news was that there was no long term kidney damage.  I was shifted to short stay, given five bags of IV and eventually, after some restless sleep and lovely help from hospital staff, I was sent home.  What a episode!

A few after thoughts…..I think the reason this happened was multi-faceted.  I clearly didn’t drink enough water or electrolytes.  By the time I started realising, my stomach had partly turned and I just couldn’t catch up, no matter how hard I tried.  I just couldn’t eat or drink enough (well, hardly anything at all to be precise!) and I suffered from it.  Secondly, I take responsibility in that I was slightly under prepared and should have had a better nutrition plan for the race.  In saying that, the food/drink set up for the event was clearly un-satisfactory as far as I am concerned.  If anyone has an issue with my saying that, shoot me an email!  Today (this has taken a couple days to write as it is a novel) I have been pretty sad, having to recount the story to customers at work when I just want to forget what happened.  I know I made the right decision but it doesn’t make it any easier to swallow!!  Lastly, at this point , I will continue on with The Super Slam.  I feel terribly disappointed that I was unable to finish the Nerang 100 but at this point, look forward to some redemption in the 200mile Grind and Coast 2 Kosci in November and December.

Last but not least, I just want to thank EVERYONE of you who reached out with kind words and love on social media after my ordeal.  I was honestly blown away!  Incredible.  From family to friends and acquaintances I haven’t seen or heard from in ages, your kind words mean the world to me!  Onward and upward friends….that is the only way!  If you have made it this far in the blog, thank you for sticking with me!  If you have any other questions about what happened email me at grills_1@hotmail.com or checkout this decent WebMD article.  Until next time friends, I am off to rest, recover and eat some quality plant food!  Much love…..Black Tar!

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25/9 – What an interesting couple of weeks it has been since Glasshouse 100!  There have been some ups, downs, eating and tiredness.  At the moment, six sleeps out from the next race in The Super Slam, I am feeling not too bad….not great but better than last week, thats for sure!

I have never done two races so long, so close together.  So, a lot of this recovery/prep has been trial and error and learning as I go.  I have absolutely eaten too much food, which I will not be doing after the next race, but kind of needed after this first push!  I have tried my best to listen to my body and not over do the training.  On a few runs I have been tired and done my best not to go too far or do too much the next day.  I have endeavoured to get enough sleep, although this is always a battle with the kiddies and family.  Generally, it has been a balancing act between trying to get my legs and body moving again but still recover enough to be good to go come Saturday in Nerang.  A tricky feat that is for sure!  Have I done enough and prepared adequately???  Well find out this weekend thats for sure!

Apart from this Super Slam business, I have been buzy at work, with the family, doing some training and generally loving life.  I have also been a guest again on The Coach Jeff Podcast and over this weekend, done filming for an upcoming Tattoo Runner video….stay tuned for this!  Life is good!

Anyway my friends, this has just been a quick update to let y’all know how I am and what is going on!  We will be heading off to the Goldy on Friday to get ready for the six looper, Nerang 100miler and a little weekend away.  I hope you are all rocking and loving life.  Keep smiling friends, chasing some dreams and keeping it real!  Live long, run on, plant strong.  Mat

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18/9 – Whats up y’all?!  Short catch up this week my friends!  Just wanted to drop in and say gday and let you know that I am still alive.  I have taken my mandatory week off after my 100miler and during the week……eaten!  Ha!  I felt pretty dusty for at least three or four days and had to make sure I kept up the food.  Then I kept on eating.  I haven’t done any training, just done my best to rest recover and give my mind a break.  Thats all done with as of tomorrow though!  I am back on the program, getting the fuelling back in check and starting to run again……I had better, considering race number two in The Super Slam is less than two weeks away!  So, the countdown is on!  I hope this blog finds you enjoying the weekend and ready to rip into another super week ahead.  Much love peeps!  Mat

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14/9 – What is cooking my friends?  Plant based fair I hope!  Today as I write, I am a couple of days past the first 100miler in The Super Slam (Glasshouse 100) and I am doing my best to recover as quickly as possible!  It was by far the deepest I have had to dig in a hundo but I got the job done and the first one is in the bag.

I was very prepared for this race and went into it actually nervous.  I haven’t had any real kind of race nerves before an event in ages so it was kind of nice.  During the last 13weeks of training, I have worked to steer away from conventional race nutrition (gels etc) and work more on eating whole foods.  This has worked really well in training, however as I found out, in the race it was just TOO much food, TOO much of the same kind of food (dried fruit and nuts) and it made me SO sick.  Basically for about 70% of the race I felt VERY ordinary, including not being able to eat or drink anything really in the last six hours.  I don’t really know how I kept moving forward!

Additionally, the weather was WILD!  We had on and off rain from about 5pm which was headed by a MASSIVE electrical storm with lightning, thunder and hail to boot!  I have never run in hail so that was ‘entertaining!’  The trails turned into rivers and I had wet feet for about the last 10hrs of the race but hay, that is trail running.

Apart from that, the race was a character builder!  Up until about 100k, I moved from third to second and was between only five and ten minutes from the lead.  After this though, my nutritional issues and failing body got the better of me and I dropped time, as well as a place, eventually finishing in 21hrs and 17min (I think) and third position.  Congrats to Kiran and Ben for the competition throughout the day!  Given all that I went through, I was still pretty wrapped with the outcome.

Many thanks to Jason, my pacer and one of my best mates!  Without him, I would have struggled even more and my finish time would have been far longer.  Tegs and the girls were fantastic crew as always and as mentioned in previous blogs, the support of Costi Farms and Chasing Vert has been amazing.  Further, to all the volunteers and race organisers, thank you for another great event!

From here, the recovery process needs to be fast and efficient!  I am doing my best to fuel the body with as much clean vegan food as I can, rest, do some yoga this week and a little running from next week.  Well see what the body decides.  Aside from that, life carries on!  Blessed as always.

All in all, the first instalment in The Super Slam was not pretty but I got the job done!  It has given me some added mental strength going forward and I am super pumped to see what the next couple weeks bring leading up to Nerang 100miler.  I hope your all out there chasing some adventure, loving life and keeping it real!  Much love, peace, presence and mindfulness to y’all!  Mat

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29/8 – Two weeks out from Glasshouse 100miler, I sit and reflect, ready to ‘taper’ and rest the body a little.  Over the last 11weeks, I have been laying a foundation….one that I am going to draw on over the next four months of adventures.  I have had probably one of the best training blocks I have had in a long time, am injury free and ready to rumble.  I have managed to put together 11weeks of solid training with a minimum of 100k per week.  This has included three 100mile weeks and most weeks being in the 120-140k range.  Three memorable weekends stand out where I did at least 70k in two days.  I ran from Burnett Heads to Elliot Heads and back, conjured up a Cane 2 Coral Plus adventure and did a nice cruise to Childers with dad.  I have only taken one day off throughout the whole time and I feel strong.  I am ready to race and aim to complete my biggest endurance challenge to date, The Super Slam.  Whilst I am petrified of what lies ahead, I have done everything I can to give it my all.  Without testing ourselves, how will we truly know our limits?    I hope and pray that over the next four months of challenges to find new potential, breaking points and success in what I am going to put my body, mind and spirit through.  Time will tell, and I anticipate coming out the other side a better athlete and human in general.

These endeavours are very difficult to undertake without the support of family, friends and supporters.  My wife and kids are a constant guiding force who I do life with, run with and learn with.  My mum and dad are also amazingly supportive and helpful in all I do, as are a number of close friends I regularly run with and chat life with.  I am also humbled, honoured and blown away by the support Pete (and family) and James have been at Costi Farms (producing the BEST macadamias you will ever taste!).  Also, Sam and Brendon at Chasing Vert and Andrew at At One Foods have shown incredible backing too.  To even consider The Super Slam would have been nearly impossible without their sponsorship and they really have provided means to make this challenge a reality.  Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart for how amazingly you have touched me, supported me and encouraged me to be better and push my limits to places they have never been.  You are special people and I love you all very much.

So, for the next two weeks I will wind back the k’s, try and sleep more, eat well and prepare mentally for what lies ahead.  This is going to be EPIC!  Thank you for sticking with me, I can’t wait to share this madness with you!  Have a rad week, be kind to all you meet, eat plants and have gratitude in all circumstances.  Much love…..


21/8 – What is up my friends!?  I hope this finds y’all ripper!  For those who don’t know, for the last 10weeks I have been preparing for my next MASSIVE challenge which I have dubbed ‘The Super Slam’.  This will surely be my biggest endurance challenge to date and here is what it will involve…..

September – Glasshouse 100miler (trail)

October – Nerang 100miler (trail)

November – The 200mile Grind (running from Bargara to the Sunshine Coast in one push)

December – Coast 2 Kosci (240k road).

I am excited, petrified and keen as a bean to see if I can pull this one off!  As I said, for the last 10weeks, training has been going SO solid and to plan.  Every week has been over 100km, including three weeks of 100miles (160k).  I have one more week of 100k then a two week ‘taper’ before the fun begins.  A really rad, and, brutal mind you, base which to launch this project from!  I  can’t really remember having such a solid, injury free long period of training for a while.  This really has given me some strong confidence going forward into the Slam.

Apart from this madness, life has been going well and continues to be blessed.  Work is always busy, the kids are growing up too fast and Tegs has been hectic with work and also super blessed with some amazing opportunities to travel and learn her trade even more.

If anyone is interested in being involved with this new project (or knows anyone who might be interested in sponsoring such silliness!) please let me know.  ANY help is greatly appreciated!  Massive thanks to Costi Farms (macadamia nuts baby and SO yum!) who have helped out already.  Shoot me an email at grills_1@hotmail.com.

I hope you are all ripper and that I can see some of you at Glasshouse in three weeks!  Much love, positive vibes and vegan blessings on you!  Have a top week!  Mat


31/7 – Man, it has been a long time since I have blogged!  Its funny, I kind of feel old school doing this as blogs kind of feel like a thing of the past! Well, sometimes I like to go back in time, what can I say!

The last couple of weeks/months have been rather hectic!  I have been off social media all of July (which has been lovely!), Chasing Vert has offered to help out with my running adventures(much love boys), Tegs has got braces and currently in Thailand on a work trip.  Running wise, I have also set myself my biggest goal to date….I have dubbed it The Super Slam and heres what it looks like….40days to go….

September 10th – Glasshouse 100miler

October 1st – Nerang 100miler

November 10th – Self organised 200miler (Bargara to the Sunshine Coast)

December – Coast 2 Kosci (240k)

I am tired just thinking about it!  All that being said, the last month and a half I have been training up a storm, loving life with the family and working hard.  Life is good!  I am super pumped and can not wait to get amongst this new challenge.

Appart from all that, life is good!  I get simple pleasure from the daily going-ons these days and wouldn’t trade them for the world.  I have truly been blessed that is for sure!

Any way, this is just a quick catch up and very brief run down on the good times that have been going on.  I have no idea if anyone even still reads these blogs but hay, its worth a shot!  I hope this finds you well and hope to see you soon, whoever, wherever you are!  Much love friend!

Live long, Run on, Plant strong