If you've ever wondered what drives someone to push their body and mind to their limits (and beyond) in an extreme sport, this book gives some insight into the phenomenon. Moire moved back to her native Ireland in 2006 and, in search of friendship and an adrenalin rush, she took up mountain racing. Over the course of a year she evolved from being a complete mountain running rookie to participating in 24 hour mountain marathons and navigation challenges. The Wicklow Round challenge, completing a ring of 26 peaks in the Wicklow Hills within 24 hours, soon becomes an obsession for Moire. This book is about the 3 years of her life that she gave over to that obsession and her progression from newbie to being the first person ever to complete the Wicklow Round challenge.
In the course of the book you are given an introduction to the quirky world of mountain running and the mind-bendingly strange one of ultra mountain racing and ultra orienteering. This is a world where people calmly, seemingly rationally, discuss the relative merits of having a sleep-break during a 24 hour race (the benefit being the rest you get of course) or to keep going through the night (so as not to get cold and stiff and not to have to carry a tent and sleeping bag on your run). A world where people will run multiple marathons up and down mountains over the course of 1, 2, 3 or more days.
But mostly this is a book about Moire's inner journey, about her failures and how she learned from each of them to come back stronger and smarter to overcome each challenge she faced, above all never giving up, never choosing the easy option but pushing herself unremittingly forward.
With a gift for descriptive prose, and a no holds barred honesty in her accounts of physical, emotional and mental struggles, Moire pulls you in and drags you along on her fascinating journey.