Day 94- EU – Italy [Moneglia to Brugnato]

08th March 2020
Run: 31km

International Women’s Day, Italy announces massive lockdowns, a short but very mountainous day – where to start…

A year ago, to the day, I announced publicly my project to go around the world running. The context was International Women’s Day, in front of an audience of cycling executives in Singapore. I remember feeling uncomfortable about it, as we were still 9 months before departure – I generally don’t like talking about things before I actually do them. But I liked the context. It fitted the Charity I had elected to run for. Women for Women International. In case you are not aware, I am aiming to raise $1 per km run. That will be $26,232 over the course of the whole journey!! I am still a looooong way from reaching the goal, but you can join the ranks of my supporters on my “How to Help” page, and contribute too!

Before I hit the road today, I read the news. That’s how I came across Italy’s decision to lockdown 14 Provinces in addition to Lombardy – until “at least” 3rd April. Coronavirus containment measure. I spent the whole run pondering what to do and figuring out what my options are.


*On the map above: in blue = my current plan / in red = how much delay the bypassing would cause

* In orange: Lombardy (region in lockdown) / In grey: the 14 added Provinces to the lockdown – till 3rd April 2020

Option 1– Do not plan any adjustment: my current plan entails entering the 1st province in lockdown on 4th April (ie: 1 day after the lockdown expires). Risky…

Option 2– Bypassing plan: stick to my current plan with a contingency bypass plan for the provinces currently in lockdown. Mitigating the risk nicely. It will delay my current plan. But I have some “buffer” ahead: I could for instance scrap the Kuala-Lumpur to Singapore segment and head straight to Australia on the date planned. Doable.

Option 3– Consider that the lockdown may be extended both in duration and geography. Should I just scrap my whole plan of heading South at all? Should I backtrack now towards France, go around Switzerland, Austria and Slovenia into Croatia? That would be a major major change of plan with a lot of consequences on my timing. I haven’t yet calculated the impact of this choice.

The risk of sticking to my current plan (heading South towards Roma then cutting West to East towards Pescara) is to get stuck in the South of Italy with no option left to get back North if more Provinces are declared into lockdown…

I am quite favorable to option 2 right now. But will investigate option 3 before I reach Pisa in 2 days time. I will make the decision to chose between 2)- and 3)- in Pisa.

Today was a shorter day, the 3rd (and last) in a row. Mountainous, as I went from sea-level to the Passo di Bracco (615m) within 11km of the run! It is frustrating to run shorter distances when I feel fine and am eager to keep moving. But I am in a mountainous area, sparsely populated, and in the off season. Not many options for accomodation! I am enjoying the mountains, the quiet roads and the variety of terrains.

Check my daily run GPS data on Garmin or Strava (icons top right of your screen) – here is the map of today’s run: