When I plan trips, I always try to envision what may go wrong so I am prepared going in. If it is for vacation or something else when my schedule is not rigid, I do not really worry about it that much (that is what TripIt Pro is for!).
What Could Possibly Go Wrong On This Trip?
But, on more complex trips or when the schedule is very important, I try to game out everything that may go wrong and be prepared for every eventuality. Such is the case with my upcoming runs around the world. You can help out by throwing out things you think may go wrong as well to help check me!
Here is the schedule of the flights:[table “” not found /]
On The Ground
As you can see, the times are pretty tight. The longest I am on the ground (except for the last stop in DC) is in Sydney (the only overnight stop) and that is for 15 hours and 35 minutes. The shortest time is in Abu Dhabi and that is for 7 hours and 45 minutes.
Remember, on each stop, I need to clear passport control and get to my starting line quickly. Once there, I need to run 26.2 miles before heading back to the airport in time for the next flight. While my normal marathon times are in the 3:30-40s hour range, I fully expect and plan for these runs to take at least an hour longer.
Example Of What Could Happen On A Single Stop
Most likely the toughest and tightest frame is going to be in Abu Dhabi. Not only is it the shortest timeframe, but it will also be my 3rd 26.2 mile run in just over 24 hours – without much, if any, sleep. Oh, it will also be over 100 degrees! 🙂
So, what do I do to plan for that? First of all, I will be heading there for a day shortly to get a very hot training run in and also game out the time from the airport to my starting spot. I will be putting out a course that will allow for me to pass the hotel (where I am leaving my stuff – not sleeping) at least a couple of times to allow for a refilling place for fluids as well as being the place where Etihad’s chauffeur will be picking me up for my return flight. This way, if everything goes very bad, I can still at least break out of the run and make it to the airport.
But what happens if the chauffeur does not show up? I have Uber on my phone and will also be carrying local currency in case I need to grab a cab.
So, What Could Go Wrong?
That is one example. Here is a list of some of the things that I think could possibly go wrong and I welcome you to add to the list. Sometimes the things you miss are right in front of you and the more I can be prepared for every eventuality, the better the whole thing will go off.
- Missed connections (only two flights have connections and one of them is a continuing flight on the same aircraft while the other follows a couple of hour layover)
- Bad weather (not really much I can do if it delays takeoff/landing, but during the run, I will have extra socks and a small towel to dry the feet off during it)
- Flight cancellation (I have backup flights noted that could get me to the locations or alternates, but it would really be difficult to do)
- Being mugged (running some of these as solo runs in the dark can be tricky – I am staying near populated areas)
- Stuck in traffic en-route (I am not driving at all as I do not want to deal with the rental time and the potential of getting lost. Plus, all of my planned routes are near hotels that I will have a day room or other arrangements at so I can leave my stuff and just go)
- Getting arrested (cannot think or imagine what for but I suppose it is a possibility!)
- Getting seriously injured (emergency numbers for each location in my phone as well as insurance info)
- Getting a minor injury (am carrying a small first-aid kit in my running pack)
- Clothes, shoes getting soaked in a storm (have extra changes of clothes and bringing two pairs of shoes)
- Getting held up at passport control (carrying information about what this solo event is that I am doing, plus should not have any problem coming in a country – more likely questions when leaving but shouldn’t be too bad)
So, what could you add to that last? I seriously welcome your input and suggestions! I have done an event similar to this before but this time, it is a bit more aggressive. However, I am also much better prepared, both in the area of travel and with my running.