Hardmoors 110 Dress rehearsal run

I like to have a final run with all the gear I’ll be wearing and carrying a week before a main race so this morning I set off up the Braes at 6.30am for a 9 mile run. I suppose I could have camped in the garden last night to replicate our plan for next Friday but only thought about that as I was running!

There were four main things I wanted to check out on the run in preparation to next Saturday …

1. Gear

I wore the kit I plan to start with next week.  If the weather forecast is for warmer weather I might have a short sleeved top or put it in my drop bag for Osmotherley. 

gear 1a

All this gear is well tried and tested and feels comfortable to run in and carry.

gear 2b

There is a fair amount of compulsory kit you need to cary for the hardmoors 110.  I’m running as an unsupported runner though Katrina is going to meet me at Saltburn and run with me from Scarborough.

gear in bag

2. Pacing by Heart Rate

I wanted to test out running by heart rate this morning to get a feel of how it might work. So I kept looking at my watch to make sure I kept my heart rate below 135.  I was averaging around 10mins miles so I think that is about right.

I’m going to keep an eye on my heart rate for the first 3-4 hours to make sure I don’t go too quickly from the start. I do have my mini-splits all sorted out but if I fall behind them by keeping to my heart rate I’m not going to worry too much.

3. Bag

The other thing I tried out this morning was practising getting things out of my bag while on the move. So I took out my sunglasses, wore them for a bit and put them back! I worked on an easy way to do it which seemed to work so that was good.

4. Recharging my Suunto Ambit

I really like running with a gps watch to help with pacing and distances etc.  I also have the whole route downloaded into my watch to help with navigation if necessary.

The Suunto has a 15 hr battery life when it’s on 1sec capture (it gives a lot longer with 1min capture but is not as accurate). So I plan to use a mobile recharger to charge up my watch.

watch charger 1a

I plan to pick it up at Saltburn.  I used it last year on the West Highland Way but I ran with a different pack so I was keen to try it out with this pack.  I decided it was easiest to run with it my pocket.

watch charger 2I felt really good and I feel as ready as I’ll ever be for this great challenge.  I plan two more easy runs on Monday and Wednesday before getting to the start line at 8am next Saturday raring to go!


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3 Responses to Hardmoors 110 Dress rehearsal run

  1. Hi John,

    Good to see you all ready. I did a trail run before the Fling with all my kit, at intended target pace and HR range, it was good to know everything was going to work. On the day my heart rate was higher for the first 20 miles than this HR range, but my pace was pretty similar. My HR didn’t drift higher through the race so after 20 miles I was actually within my target HR range for each leg the rest of the race.

    As for your target HR range, sounds a little high on the high side. I have done analysis of our HR data vs time and projected what average HR we’d like see at different race lengths. For you it looks like you’d be able to average around 135 bpm for a 11 hour race, while a 26-27 hour race it predicts ~124 bpm. Mixing in walking with running would be a way to bring your average down if it’s hard to run slow enough to achieve a HR of 124 bpm during the race. I’ll try and put my preliminary analysis on my blog this week.

    I believe starting run/walk early in the race is likely better than doing the majority of running in the first half, then more walking later.

    I also suspect the cost of going too fast/too slow on any particular section will be no-linear, where a modest error in pacing will lead to a small impact on final time, while a larger error will lead to a disproportionately large impact on final time. The nice thing about pacing by HR is you can spot these errors as they happen rather than after you get to a check point and check your splits. Biggest source of going to hard on any section will be pushing on too hard up hill so this is the time it’s probably worth checking your HR monitor the most.

    I don’t have ability to check splits directly on my HR monitor, but it sure would be useful to know what average HR one achieved for a leg of race as the race progressed. Inevitably your HR will go up and down as you race even if you intended to keep it in a narrow range, knowing how well you are doing based on the average would reassuring if you are close to expectations, or would ring an alarm bell if it’s too high.

    On thing I found myself doing during the Fling was when I checked my HR monitor and saw that I was within my intended HR for a section I thought to myself “I’m in the Zone”. Prior to the race I didn’t plan of using this phrase or other self talk phrases, but during the race the phrase just popped into me head and resonated with me in a really positive way. Once I latched on to the phrase I used it of my of positive self talk mantra to reinforce how well I was running and that I could maintain it all the way to the end.

    As for your finishing time… I haven’t done any analysis of this, but I’ll assume you pace sensible, navigation and eating/drink goes perfectly, I’d say 26:12:04, of which 12 minutes and 05 seconds was consumed taking photos and videos for your blog!

    What time it will be doesn’t really matter too much, it’s adventure you’ll have along the way which will be will be most rewarding 😉

    • Thanks Robert. As always that’s really helpful. I must admit I plucked 135 out of the air in lots of ways, mainly looking at previous races but you are right they have been the 110k and 55mile races. So keeping HR around 125 will be a better guide.
      Thanks too for your guess. I’ll try and not waste too much time on photos but it is part of the fun for me!

  2. Ian booth says:

    Huge respect for your commitment, training and planning. I hope it goes well and have an enjoyable run. I look forward to reading about your adventure.

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