So far I’ve got my two pairs of trainers, one pair to train in, the other to be kept fresh for the race, gaiters, rucksack (Raidlight Olmo 20L), food packs from expedition foods, survival kit (containing – signalling mirror, safety pins, lighter, aluminium blanket, snake venom pump), head torch and hand sanitizer. So I feel as though I’ve got most of the mandatory equipment covered. The sleeping bag would be the next big purchase (£170) but I potentially have a friend who’s going to lend me his.
The key things I need to concentrate on now is food, snacks, rehydration sachets, protein powders etc and make sure I’ve got the correct weight to calories ratio and that I’m getting the most out of each item I have to carry. I want my backpack to be as close to the minimum weight as I can get it. There’s no point in carrying extra you’d just end up putting more pressure on yourself and making the actual race harder.
I do think there’s a balance that needs to be achieved, if you want to win and be a serious competitor then the weight of your backpack and each item in it is going to be crucial, you’d empty liquid out of the lighter, cut the end off your tooth brush, and get rid of any unnecessary straps etc.
When James Cracknell did it, he had the majority of his food in liquid to keep the weight down. If you just want to get round and finish, then I think it would be better to have a few extra comforts from home, which could make a key difference in your race and how much you enjoy it.
You have to carry everything, so you need to decide whether it’s going to be worth it or not and that’s a personal decision. One of the big problems I’ve found with the MdS is there’s a lot of information and advice out there about the race and the best equipment to use and how to train for it.
What I would advise is that you know your body; you know what’s going to work best for you. If you’ve worn a certain brand of trainers for years and never had any problems, then don’t change just for the MDS!
Make the best decisions for you!
COMPULSORY EQUIPMENT FOR PARTICIPANTS
All of the obligatory equipment and personal belongings for each competitor (food, survival equipment and Marathon kit, waist pouch...) should weigh between 6.5kg and 15 kg.
This minimum/maximum weight does not include your daily water supply. Each participant will have to fulfill the above obligations during the administrative and technical checks in Morocco. Food:
Each entrant must provide his/her own food from 06 au 12 April inclusive. He/she must select the type of food best suited to his/her personal needs, health, weather conditions, weight and backpack conditions. Each competitor must have 14 000 k/calories, that is to say a minimum of 2,000 k/calories per day, otherwise he/she will be penalised.
• backpack MDS or equivalent • sleeping bag, • head torch with spare batteries, • 10 safety pins, • compass, with 1° or 2° precision, • lighter, • a whistle, • knife with metal blade, • topical disinfectant, • anti-venom pump, • a signaling mirror, • one aluminum survival sheet, • one tube of sun cream, • 200 Euros or equivalent in foreign currency.
This is supplied by the organization and will include the following:
• a road-book, • a distress flare, • salt tablets, • sachets for the toilets • ID marks