Running through Cambodia, day1

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Day 1:
Got up at 4:50, at 5:45 I had arrived by tuktuk to road number 6 just outside siem reap.
That’s where I started running.
Even before sunrise I was literally covered in a fine film of sweat and it was just running down my face. That was at 6am.

My bag must have been around 6.5 kg including two 0.5l water bottles on each side. Didn’t have any breakfast apart from a beautifully ripe mango.

For the first two hours there was lots of traffic, especially toward siem reap. The route was dead easy, straight road nr 6, 320 km towards Phnom Penh.

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I had a little towel attached to my bag pack. A life safer- made its end wet to wipe off sweat and dust.

After 2h I had to start walking. For the next 3h. I covered 35km and managed to get to dam dek. On the way there was plenty of opportunities to buy water and coconut juice. In those 5h on the road I had 1.5l water (including 0.5l of electrolytes) and 2 coconuts.

From dam dek I took a tuktuk to kouk thlok kroem. As described by another blog there is one tiny guesthouse here. Rooms 6dolars, simple and fairly clean.

The run was incredibly hard. I found it difficult to find food. The heat made me feel a bit stomach sick and I could not get any food for 3h.
Cambodian food is so different- often hard to tell what it is. They sell a lot of baguettes but as a celiac that’s not an option. Also I don’t eat meat and many dishes are just unidentifiable.

I literally in the middle of nowhere. Went to the market where I got a lot of attention and credit for being dressed traditionally in flip flops and sarrong by the local women.

Their smiles and the many smiles I got from children along the way made this first day so extremely worth it.

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One thought on “Running through Cambodia, day1

  1. What you notice around Dam Daek is a lot of roadside food sellers who all specialise in the same thing. If I recall, they’re like bamboo filled with rice. Along Number 6 Highway there will be pineapple sellers, then a stretch of sellers of rice sellers, then – closer to Phnom Penh – an area where they sell Cashew nuts. One realises that each locality has a food specialty, and this gives texture to your journey.
    Three weekends ago I journeyed past Dam Daek – which is a most unusual town I think – to a village that I don’t think has roadsigns: Kampong Kdei – where I was honoured to meet a group of families whose children we house closer to Siem Reap, in order that they can get a full education.
    We went out by pick-up truck (20 of us) and I was struck by how little touched this community is by modern Cambodian life.
    Though not quite. The students had contacted us by Facebook – they’d found our organisation and asked for assistance – so I guess, even as you’re running past the rice farms (ask for a coconut – the milk is sweet as dessert wine) and looking out at the flat landscape dotted by sugarpalms – the internet has made its way out, even here.

    Good luck on your ultra-run. My God – I could barely cope, and I was going by truck – and stay safe on that road.

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