Plans for 2012

I’ve not been running for the last six weeks but I’m about ready to get going again. My left Achilles is still slightly sore so I’m going to be doing easy runs for the forseable future. No speed work until I feel my Achilles can cope with it.

I have been thinking a lot about next year and what I want to do. I made the decision not to run the West Highland Way next year half way along the Lairig Mor as I struggled to finish this year’s race.

Up until this year as soon as the race is over I’m ready and looking forward to next year. But not this year. I didn’t enjoy the race much and really feel I need a break for at least a year having run it for 5 years. I love the race too much and so I’ll still be involved.

I’ve been asked to take over the web site and also to coordinate the results on the day so I’ll still be there and able to put something back into the race.

So what should I target for next year?

Firstly I’d talked to Katrina about running the Highland Fling together and suprisingly she agreed! So we are going to train and run the 53mile ultra from Milngavie to Tyndrum on Saturday 28th April 2012.

Given how well Katrina is running at the moment I fear she may be the one waiting for me!!

The main race I’m targetting for 2012 is the …..

Ever since I heard about this race a few years ago I really wanted to do it. I love the Lakes having spent a good number of holidays there with my parents and friends.

I didn’t feel I could do both the whw and Lakeland 100 in the same year but since I’ve decided not to run the whw next year the way is open.

My friend Dave Troman, who lives in Keswick, suggested we could train together so it’s all falling into place. I’m really looking forward to training on a completely different route with no previous times to compare myself with!

So I entered at 9.05am last Saturday (the entries opened at 9am!). On the last look there are already 184 entries. There are only 300 places so if you’re interested apply now!

Here is the blurb about the race from the web site ….

The Lakeland 100

5:30pm, Friday July 27th 2012 – 9:30am, Sunday July 29th 2012.

The Lakeland 100 ‘Ultra Tour of the Lake District’ is the most spectacular long distance trail race which has ever taken place within the UK. The circular route encompasses the whole of the lakeland fells, includes in the region of 6300m of ascent and consists almost entirely of public bridleways and footpaths.

The route starts in Coniston and heads South before completing a clockwise loop which takes in the Dunnerdale fells, Eskdale, Wasdale and Buttermere before arriving in Keswick. From here the route heads to Matterdale and continues over to Haweswater before returning via Kentmere, Ambleside and Elterwater to the finish at Coniston.

The route does not pass over any of the ‘popular’ Lakeland summits. Instead, it weaves it’s way through stunning valleys, coutours picturesque fells and cuts it’s own line through the amazing Lakeland topography.

The Lakeland 100 will take you to places in Cumbria you may never have visited before and it’s likely you’ll wonder why.The event is continous in nature, competitors don’t have to stop or sleep on the route and the winners are generally expected to finish close to the 23 hour mark.

The overall time available for the route is 40 hours so sleep at intermediate checkpoints is possible, but time is not on your side.There are 14 manned checkpoints on the course which are compulsory to visit, food and drink is available at each.

Checkpoints generally consist of village halls (where available), staffed by our support team who are ready to greet you, feed you and encourage you onwards. The 40 hours available to complete the course may seem manageable upon your first calculations but don’t be fooled.

The climb, descent, rugged terrain, darkness and tricky navigation generally ensure a 50-60% failure rate over the 100 mile course. Seasoned ultra runners have tried and many have failed, a finisher’s medal in the Lakeland 100 is possibly one of the most treasured possessions you will ever receive.

There are few things in life for which you will have to work so hard, show such commitment, desire and the simple stubbornness to keep going.. the minority who have completed the event will concur.The 100 mile event starts at 5.30pm on the Friday evening and the final cut off will be 9.30am Sunday morning.

You can choose to enter the event as a solo participant, as part of a pair or as part of a 3 person team. Pairs and teams must remain together at all times on the course.The event requires competitors to be experienced ultra distance runners with excellent navigation skills.

The drop out rate for this event is a warning signal for anyone contemplating entry, the majority of those who fail are inadequately prepared. Before considering an entry, consider the preparation, consider the hours and consider what it takes to complete the Lakeland 100. If it was easy, it wouldn’t be an achievement.

I see some familar races in the start list already including Ross Moreland, Mark Leggart, Jon Steele, Shirley Colquhoun and of course 2010 winner Stuart Mills.

I’m really looking forward to next year and the new challenges I’ve set myself. Of course you will be able (if you want to!) to follow all my preparation and training here at my blog!

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2 Responses to Plans for 2012

  1. This could get very intersting…

  2. Andy Cole says:

    Good choice John, the Lakeland is a great event and I'm sure you and the other family guys will enjoy it.

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