Alternative Training – My first Ultra

I knew that after my experiences in Poland and on the Camino that if you really wanted to soar, look within. Deep within. I knew I could do this.


  1. I realised I would never give myself a hard time with regards to not putting in the distance or work. I listened to my body each day and realised that I would have to take everything in my stride, without any pressures. I would do a natural cold exposure daily, exploring breath retention, the Wim Hof Method and how I should inhale and exhale using the Buteko Method. This breathing method also happens to be effective for asthma suffers who would like to reduce using their inhalers.
  2. I simply connected with nature every day. I saw raw beauty in the tarns I swam in, noticing little details such as tiny glistening rain drops on the moss as I relaxed under a waterfall. The cold brings you back to the present moment. Hiking in the fells, passing shaded trees at that time, brought me a delicious smell of seasonal wild garlic. Walking barefoot, I explored movement, climbing and hanging from trees. I welcomed all weathers. I remember one occasion when the rain had ceased whilst I was swimming in a tarn but soon restarted as I set off back. I remember I had a beaming smile while cycling home as it was an extended cold exposure for me and I thought ‘it is what it is’.  My adventures everyday were a balance of struggles and challenges, yet I felt alive as they rewarded me with more joy, more fulfilment and a sense of purpose as I explored and anchored.

I saw that everything was active in nature. I experienced this and I began to feel a part of this balance.  Nothing can replace our raw self surviving the outdoors and feeling alive by truly challenging ourselves physically and mentally. This realisation, I believe, pulls us to discover our potential.

I now believe the stewardship of nature and our environment begins with loving ourselves in nature and feeling our connection to it.

The cold exposure enabled me to unlock this daily and grow a new level of actualisation, glowing outwardly because of the positive feelings that had been lit inside. I was no longer living disconnected to my potential.  I was training with a healthy fear for the outer edge of my current capability.  In nature, time passes quickly, a flow state as you tune into your breath, your thoughts and listen to your body.  The soul exhales and relaxes as all your senses awaken because you become an integral part of the outdoors and allow yourself the freedom to be imperfect.

Wim Hof Method

On the day

I cycled 6.2 miles to the start of the race.  As I have never ran this distance before, I assumed I would be back in time for my evening waitressing job at 1800hrs.  By 1600hrs it dawned on me that I will not make the start of my work shift, so at check point 4 I called my boss and said; “I am literally running as fast as I can”.

Other than that minor oversight of finishing time, my ultra-run ended up a long open track to the centre of my soul and the benefits of this different approach became an easier way to live my life.

My journey after discovering the power of the breath spurred me on to be a more conscious thinker with a greater gratitude for nature, creating a more natural movement of my body, playing with my diet and immersing myself back into a community.

Trust the process of change.  I now run workshops to give you the edge on any performance. I have had participants complete their first 100 mile run, first half marathon, first full marathon and ice mile. Contact me to learn more.

About the author

Emma Corrie

Emma Corrie

Author: Emma Corrie

I now run workshops, retreats, private sessions and breathing classes.  I share my knowledge I have gained and introduce exploration of dormant biological and mental potential. My workshops involve the understanding of the three pillars of the Wim Hof method; Breathing, Cold Exposure and Commitment and I do this by movement and changing your nature of consciousness.

I share my experience in beautiful surroundings and nature itself will nudge you out of your comfort zone to call into question the unnecessary limits we self-impose upon ourselves daily.  Curious? I invite you all to join in the fun on my next workshop or contact me if you have any questions.

Facebook:  @emmaestre11a79
Instagram: @estre11a79