Strava Update

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Post Ultra Recovery

Its now just over a week after my first ultra event. Recovery was quick, my legs were back to normal within 2 days, which was alot quicker than my first marathon. I couldnt walk down any stairs for a week after that!
I am now contemplating my next moves as to races for next year (2012). I am planning to run the Jersey marathon in October, and I have entered the Dorset trail marathon in December to keep things ticking along. I plan to do the Jurassic coast challenge (
in March which is a 3 day event with 26 miles on each day. I figure this will be a good introduction to multi day racing as well as a good challenge. I am thinking about then doing the Cardiff Ultra (50 miles in May) as well as hoping to get a ballot place in the London marathon in April. I was trying to negotiate a place in a race called the Dragon's Back, which is a great 6 days race from North Wales to South Wales through the mountains. Places are limited however and they felt I didnt have the necessary experience to take part. So its back to the drawing board for my mid summer race..
By the middle of next summer i hope to be significantly fitter, and stronger than I am now. I am moving in the right direction and achieving the goals I am setting, which is a great feeling.
I plan to commence marathon training from tomorrow. I have worked out my programme for Octobers marathon here, and I have set myself the goal of a 3 and half hour time. I plan to do hill reps as well as to continue trail running as I feel this complements my road running. It will be good to be running again after a week of inactivity, I feel ready to go and hope for a good few weeks of productive sessions.
I will also be making my transition to a more minimalist training shoe during this phase of my training; I recently purchased a pair of Saucony Kinvara running shoes so am looking forward to adjusting to using them. I have read good things about them promoting more of a mid foot strike and hope it will assist my persistent calf issues. Having done more trail running and using the Inov8 Roclite 295 has definitely helped, so I am looking to these to do the job on the road.
Heres a picture of me during the last Ultra, doing a great job of looking like I was loving it! (I really did!)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Round The Rock Ultra Marathon Event Jersey

Yesterday I completed my first Ultra marathon

. 48 miles around Jersey in the Greenlight: Round the rock Ultra Marathon, over 1000 metres of ascent.
I finished in 9 hours 27 mins which was completely beyond my expectations to be honest. It was a hard day although felt good for the first 2 thirds of the race, which was a pleasant surprise My friend Steve and I went out cautiously as the longest either of us have run in one go is 26 miles, so we started with run 7 mins walk one minute as the first 10 miles are on road. We then switched to walking the uphills and running flats/downhills as soon as we hit the cliffpaths. It seemed an effective srategy and we passed alot of people on the paths which was encouraging. I remember feeling so good that I was waiting for the crash! I tried to keep eating and drinking and this seemed to sustain my energy and definitely between that and Steve and I just chatting for the whole thing to keep us in good spirits were the reasons a) I completed it and b) managed to complete in under 10 hours and gain the Silver Medal standard.
The cutoff time was 12 hours and the standards split into Bronze for completion under 12 hours, Silver for under 10 hours and Gold for under 8 hours. The winner came in at 6 hours 15 and was Daniel Doherty from Ireland. The great thing about the day was there was 115 runners, which was great for this inaugural event here in Jersey and over half the field were from abroad; The UK, Finland even a lady from Korea and a 76 year old lady from Welwyn Garden City which was truly inspirational to see!
A great day, especially to do my first ultra at home, friends coming to run with me at certain parts of the course as well as being at aid stations, and I dont feel too bad this morning to be honest.. I just got out of bed and can actually do an impression of walking which is great! I have however lost 4 toenails but who needs these?
For the run I used Inov8 Roclite 295's which I can heartily recommend, great traction, lightweight shoe. But the real success stroy for me for the day was some Nike Drifit Anti Blister socks I purchased from JD sports one day when I forgot to bring socks with me to go running. They were £12.95 for a pack of 2 and I took them off at the end and I did not have a single blister, which was amazing for me. I usually suffer from blisters on 10km runs so was expecting something resembling a crime scene at the end of yesterday!
I heartily recommend entering next years event if you want to do an ultra with stunning scenery and great camaraderie.