Dragon’s Back Day 2 Recce Video

I took some video clips of my recce run with Andy Cole over the weekend. Unfortunately the cloud base was low so we didn’t get any views from the tops!

Posted in dragon's back ultra | 1 Comment

Guess My Time – Ring o Fire

My next ultra will be new to me in that it will be first time I have done a staged race. This one is called the Ring o Fire and covers the coastal path around Anglesea in North Wales.

Screen Shot 2018-08-20 at 18.27.26

Here is a breakdown of the 3 days taken from the website.

Screen Shot 2018-08-20 at 18.32.18

Day of the race starts on Friday 31st August 2018 which happens to be our wedding anniversary!!

Once again my good friends at http://www.ultramarathonrunning.com have offered a prize for the closest guess. A pair of Hoka Torrent trail running shoes.

Screen Shot 2018-08-20 at 18.36.38.png

Plus a limited edition ‘Guess My Time’ keyring

Screen Shot 2018-04-23 at 17.28.26

To take part and have a chance to win these prizes all you have to do is send me your guess in hours, minutes and seconds of how long you think it will take me to complete the 135 miles over 3 days.

As before there is only one guess per time so if your time is taken I’ll ask you to guess again.

To give you an idea of here is my plan for the 3 days ..

  • Day 1: 35.70 miles – 7hrs 30mins
  • Day 2: 65.58 miles – 16hrs 30mins
  • Day 3: 33.09 miles – 8hrs

If I achieved that my total time would be 32hrs 00mins 00secs.

If you want to take part please send your guess by 5pm on Thursday 30th August 2018 by:-

  • leave a comment on this post
  • on my Facebook page
  • Twitter: @jkynaston
  • Text: 07905 218162
  • Instagram: jkynaston
  • Email: jkynaston00@hotmail.com
  • in person
  • any other imaginative method


Posted in Guess My Time | 17 Comments

parkrun & Lochwinnoch Loosener

Since January when I felt I got going with my training for the year I haven’t done any speed work as I was cautious with my ankle after last year’s tendon injury. I felt that if I did some faster running it may well breakdown so to make sure I was able to complete the 190 mile Northern Traverse in May I decided to stick to long slower running.

Over the past week or two I felt a bit more confident that I might be able to do some faster running. So a week last Monday (6th Aug) I went along to our Kilbarchan Fartlek session. It was so good to see the group again after 18 months even though there were only 6 of us. The session was a good one to come back to. It was 10mins, 10 x 1min (with 30secs), 10mins.  The idea of the 10min runs was to try and run the second one as quick as the first.

On the first 10min run I tried to run at a steady pace and felt okay. For the 10 x 1min I ran behind my friend Donald Petrie who always sets a good even pace. For the final 10min run I was pleased that I was able to run a little faster than the first one.

It was so good to get back and I’m planning to get along as much as I can over the next few months but it will depend on what I’m doing at the weekend.

On Thursday I had a  day out in the Lakes with my friend Cammie, who is aiming to have a go at the Bob Graham round next summer. Cammie was in Keswick for the week and was planning to recce as much of the Bob Graham round as he could. I joined him for leg 2 which goes from Theldkeld to Dunmail Raise. We camped the night before and then left Cammie’s car at Dunmail Raise before driving my car back to Theldkeld.

We started running about 7.45am and had superb weather for the 4hrs 35mins it took us to do that leg. The Harvey map suggest 4hrs 30mins for that leg so I think it gave Cammie a good idea that this is going to be a tough challenge!

Cammie 21.PNG

On Saturday I decided to run the Linwood parkrun. I’ve not done this one for 18months so again it was good to be back. I tried to run sensibly early on which I felt I did. My mile splits were 6:29, 6:41, 6:39 for a time of 20:13. Katrina also had a great run just one week after running the Devil of the Highlands ultra race.

Screen Shot 2018-08-15 at 17.24.53.png

Screen Shot 2018-08-15 at 17.25.21

I had planned to go back to the club on Monday night but most of the group were planning to run the Lochwinnoch Loosener (8k) instead. So I decided to join them. The race is part of a series of races called the Tour of Clydeside. There are 110 runners doing all the races and then another 35 running the race on Monday.

The race is along the cycle track from Castle Semple. It is an out and back course which I quite like as it gives you the chance to see all the runners as they pass you on the way back or as you pass them on their way out. It was great to see various friends running.

With so many running it was a little crowded at the start which meant I pushed a bit too hard to get past people and I was struggling for a while to keep up my pace. I was glad to see the turn round point and then tried to maintain my pace right to the finish. My mile splits were … 6:37, 6:49, 7:01, 7:03, 7:04 so not too bad!

Screen Shot 2018-08-15 at 17.22.44.png

Photo near the finish by Kenny Phillips

This weekend I’m heading down to Wales for a recce run on the Dragon’s Back. I’m joining Andy again and we are covering day 2 over 2 days. I’m looking forward to seeing what this section of the course looks like.

Screen Shot 2018-08-15 at 17.29.18.png

Posted in dragon's back ultra, Linwood parkrun | Leave a comment

Supporting Katrina at the Devil o’ the Highlands

It was my turn to support Katrina as she ran the 42 mile Devil o’ the Highlands race for the 2nd time. The race is on the top section of the West Highland Way from Tyndrum to Fort William.

I was able to have a couple of runs totalling 18.88 miles so I had a good time too!

Katrina finished in 9hrs 29mins 50secs and really enjoyed the race though she was sick on and off from about 19 miles. I ran with her for the last 5.5 miles and I was impressed with how strong she was running right to the end.

I took lots of video clips of the start and the majority of the runners on the Devil’s Staircase. I’ve put them together in a video. It lasts just over 30mins …

Posted in Devil O' The Highlands Race Video | Leave a comment

Review of July 2018

July was a good month of solid training which included our holiday walking round the Tour of Mont Blanc.

I ran/walked a total of 212.99 miles. Here are the stats.

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 17.59.50

In graph form …

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 18.10.01

In diary form with cycles …

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 17.54.55

I like to keep a track of different types of runs throughout the year …

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 18.07.35

I’m ahead of the red line in my goal of running 2018 miles in 2018

Screen Shot 2018-08-02 at 20.02.22

Posted in Monthly review | Leave a comment

Video of our Tour of Mont Blanc

Katrina & I had an amazing week walking around the Tour of Mont Blanc. As you might expect I took lots of photos and videos and I’ve put a diary of our trip together.

Hopefully it will give you a sense of the amazing scenery we walked through!

Posted in Holiday, Tour of Mont Blanc | 2 Comments

Dragon’s Back Recce weekend 1

I really enjoyed my first recce weekend on the Dragon’s Back course with my good friend Andy Cole. I’m in doubt that this is going to be a tough challenge that is going to test me to my limits.

I drove down to Chester arriving at Andy’s house at 6pm. Andy’s wife Jan provided a lovely meal before we drove in convoy to Llanberis where we were staying at the Chester Mountaineering Hut.

We decided to have an early start with the hope that we might finish in time to catch at least the second half of the England v Sweden quarter final (we didn’t!!).

We left at 6am, left one car near Pen-y-Pas and drive to the start in Conwy. We started running just before 7am in beautiful weather.

I took lots of photos and video clips so I won’t write a full description but maybe highlight a few lessons.

  • I wore my new Altra Lone Peak and I was really happy with them. Enough cushioning and good grip.
  • I drank all the water I took and was very grateful we could refill in a stream on the way down to Llyn Ogwen.
  • The initial climbs are fairly straight forward on mainly good paths but it is important to remember there are lots of really tough climbs to come!
  • I need to work on my downhill running. I’ve never been good but have improved a bit but to do well in this race I need to be able to descend on rough ground quicker than at present.
  • The descent to Llyn Ogwen was pretty tough especially coming off the top. A lot of boulders to climb down.
  • I used poles going up Tryfan and the Glyders and felt they really helped.
  • The climb up Glyder Fach was really hard. It is on loose scree and so hard to get a grip. I felt as though I was taking 2 steps up and sliding 1 step down. I was happy to make the top!
  • The descent to Pen-y-Pas was okay.

On Sunday we left at car at Nantgwynant and then drove back up to the car park below Pen-y-Pass to start our day. It was another stunning day weather wise and the views all day were amazing.

  • The climb up Crib Goch needs my full concentration. Andy said that on race day there are a number of marshals to guide you on the best line.
  • I was fairly happy on the ridge though not as confident as Andy who walked along the top. I preferred to be slightly to the left side so I could old on!
  • The descent off Snowdon is a pretty steep and will test the quads especially on Day 1 when I will have been on the move for well over 10hrs by then.
  • The descent to the end of Day 1 is okay but I’ll need to concentrate on finding the right line.
  • The gpx line on my Suunto Ambit was excellent and very accurate which gave me a lot of confidence that I would be able to follow that even in bad weather.

I took splits for all the official checkpoints so I have a clear record of the distances and height gained and lost for each section. If you are interested here it is.


Andy was a great guide and we really enjoyed the weekend together which is just as well as we have three more planned!

I took lots of video clips and photos and I’ve put them together in one of my videos so I can rewatch which I’ll do many times.

Posted in dragon's back ultra | Leave a comment