Date : 17th July 2013
Time : 1h 1’58”
Total Distance Covered to Date : 10km
Number of runners : 2
If I’m really going to do this, then I guess it’s not a bad place to start.
Kollentrollet – a 6.7m statue of a troll – is behind me and the magnificent
Holmenkollen ski jump in front of me.
The plan is to run 2020km from the Olympic stadium in London to the Olympic
stadium in Tokyo – doing a 10km run in every country in the world along the
way. The run in Norway is by way of a trial to see if I’m really going to go
ahead with this mad plan.
And the first kilometre isn’t going well. It’s fairly steep uphill and Liz is
annoyed. Annoyed with me because I should be concentrating on earning some
money and helping with the kids rather than setting out on another
challenge. Annoyed with herself for agreeing to come on this run on a hot
afternoon. And, crucially, annoyed because she’s as competitive as hell and
this uphill section means it’s going to be hard to hit her one hour target
for the run.
Finally, after spending 10 minutes on the first 1.2km, we start to go downhill
through the woods of Nordmaarka above Oslo. Lovely. And we’re making up some
We hit the outskirts of Oslo and get a little disorientated but we’ve
covered 7.3km after 45 minutes. Surely we’re going to make it.
Then disaster strikes. An endless pedestrian light. We try running round in
little circles while we wait but the GPS isn’t sensitive enough. We’re not
going to make it.
We finish our 10km in Oslo’s wonderful Vigelund Park in 1hr 1 min and 58
seconds. Liz isn’t as disappointed as I feared. In fact she tells me it’s a
good time for a girl but a bad time for a boy. I know better than to
At least we can agree that, despite the heat and the running on pavements,
it was good to have done the run. Well, to have completed it in any event.
And am I going to do the whole challenge? Yes, I think so. Probably.
In which case, I’ve got 2010 km and 201 countries to go.