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Last year I attempted the London2Brighton 100k walk, run, jog challenge. I made it to 80k and got rescued from the woods with severe blisters, at 4am in the morning after 19 hours of walking.
So I signed up again this year for the 106k Isle of Wight Challenge – yes longer, more hilly, more challenging terrain, but I needed to fight my demons.
I already realise how much I underestimated the London2Brighton. We did some training last year but nowhere near enough, so this year the game is on!
Trying to achieve at least 20k per weekend, plus gym and uphill treadmill walking to build up the hamstrings and prevent blisters. More importantly I learnt what kit I need to complete the challenge this time around. I have put a huge focus on the right walking shoes and socks, and even invested in some walking poles.
The Digital Experience
As blisters took me out last time, I thoroughly researched my walking shoes online and found the location to purchase instore to make sure they fit well, planning to purchase online to get the best price. However Go Outdoors run a price match, as long as you can purchase the same size and colour elsewhere they will price match and further reduce the item by 10%. So instore I searched on mobile before entering the till and found the same shoes for £5 cheaper, plus the 10% discount I had a right result and left a happy customer![/vc_column_text][vc_column_text]Walking poles had been a noticeable aid that other walkers used last year. On my way out of the woods, as the sun was rising, I found a walking pole discarded by someone which I used as a handy crutch. This year walking poles were on the agenda, so I looked up the exact same make to get a matching pair – Ebay came to the rescue. So I ordered via my mobile app just in time for some training at the weekend.
The time had come to break in my shoes, socks and walking poles and I wanted to make sure I tracked my distance and terrain.
My saviour in all this has been Runkeeper, I used it previously for jogging but more importantly now for walking and hiking. You can see the distance mapped but also the altitude and speed per kilometre.
- Cross Country Emsworth to Bosham and back via Woodmancote:
A good pace, and 21km was nearly a 5th of the final challenge so a good start. The weather was so windy – it was at the start of Hurricane Imogen (little did we know), so rather than a costal route we headed inland where there was more protection from the gales.
- Petersfield Saturday Trek:
With the Petersfield beer festival lined up, we decided to walk to it, killing two birds with one stone. Training and saving money on public transport so we could have a few drinks.
After 3.47 hours we were pretty done and arrived in Petersfield for a quick pint then missed the festival and headed for the station to get the train home. The training was highlighting how big this challenge was. Still we had only completed 5th of the distance of the 106km IOW challenge.
- Bosham to Emsworth coastal walk:
Bus to Bosham and this time the weather was beautiful for a coastal walk. Heading back and winding along the coast this gave us the most realistic training scenario based on terrain. There was mud (thick mud) marshes, sand, stones, grass, pavements and narrow coastal paths. The trip took us round Thorney Island, the army base and the last 5k turned very cold and windy as we headed up the harbour into Emsworth. It was a long, slow slog and the realisation of what is to come is now taking hold!
The Digital Journey
My digital journey is much more complex now, each step of the buying process there are comparisons, research, reviews and the user journey becomes much more involved.
In the end I chose Salomon Walking Shoes, Bridgedale socks and Summit walking poles, all tracked by Runkeeper – not based on their push advertising, but based on the research, recommendation, guidance in store, price point, brand quality and perception, and finally that they suited my requirements. This makes the marketing mix far more challenging than the good old days of a First Moment of Truth (FMOT) paving the way to a sale. We now have the Zero Moment Of Truth (ZMOT) and every marketers approach needs to think about the whole user journey, not just the first or last interaction instead all the micro moments involved.
To find out more about ZMOT and micro moments take a look at Think with Google https://www.thinkwithgoogle.com/collections/zero-moment-truth.html
At the end of April I will be taking part in the 106k Walk – Run – Jog round the Isle of Wight in less than 28 hours. Please feel free to sponsor me for OCD-UK
All donations are much appreciated.