Forget groupies. There’s a new type of extreme girlfriending in town. Behold the rise of the ultra widow… Worried you might be one? Follow these tips to find out.
When your boyfriend nips out for a quick jog, he turns up 10 hours later with wolf shit in his hair and a strange faraway expression that suggests he’s either been freebasing crack in the bushes, or reached a higher plane of consciousness from running endlessly for 50 miles.
Nothing, I repeat nothing, comes between your boyfriend and race day. Birthday? Christening? Wedding anniversary? Funeral? Forget it. Running 100 miles in a 30-man race across wet fields with nothing to eat but nettles is far more important and will always come first.
Your boyfriend has more shoes than you do. Times 100.
You’ve forgotten what male toes look like and assume all men have black stumps for feet and their ankles are meant to be a strange greeny blue hue. You grow so used to his malformed rotting tootsies, that normal healthy feet start to look odd.
You don’t have a single glass in your kitchen cupboard. Not even a stray champagne flute. The entire house drinks out of designated plastic drip-free water bottles, designed for trekking through the desert. But you don’t really mind because this way, no one can tell how much gin you drink.
Your kitchen cupboard consists almost entirely of freeze-dried space food.
When your boyfriend offers to bonk you, he actually means starve you of food and drink for six hours while making you run endlessly round the block to build your tolerance for malnutrition.
When he actually does suggest sexy time, you call a babysitter, book the week off work, and invest in a vat of lube, because you’re in for the looong haul, with breaks for carbo loading.
To relax between races, on rest days your boyfriend runs 15 miles instead of 50. Or if he’s really winding down, he climbs a mountain, jumps out of a plane, or has a quick kayak down a gorge, leaving you to do the weekly food shop in peace.
Your laundry room, cupboards, wardrobes and drawers are stuffed with so much running gear, that you can tune in to Radio 4 off the static.
Your idea of a mini break involves sitting in a car in the Lake District in the pissing rain reading Heat magazine while your boyfriend drops off reconstituted rice pudding at designated mile markers for his mate Dave.
You discover that the only thing worse than an absent ultra runner, is an injured one. One week of a wounded ultra runner moaning about his sore foot and you’ll be begging him to bugger off to The Sahara.
You are seriously considering taking up ultra running and training for a gruelling 55-mile race which will probably leave you permanently damaged and put you off exercise for life, because you’ve been hypnotised by ultra voodoo magic and have come to believe ultra running is perfectly normal behaviour.