Monday, 31 March 2008

Completed night run

Just back in the door at 4.50 a.m. Pretty tired but happy with the run.
Stuck to the intended route. Weather was much colder than I expected after a warm day of 14 C. Dropped to 2C with a ground frost by the time I got home. I wore shorts which was ok, but I was glad I took my OMM windproof jacket as the Helly underneath wouldn't have been enough on its own.
I often run after 10pm at night, but that's the latest (earliest?!) I've ever run. What strange looks you get, not least from the Police in central Leeds! You also see some weird and wonderful things on a four hour run through a big city in the early hours of the morning. Don't think I'd have the nerve to try the same run on a Friday or Saturday night.
Anyway I enjoyed the run. Off to bed now :) ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Saturday, 29 March 2008

Night Run

Am going to try a night run tomorrow. Will leave at 1 a.m and try a tired 25m run. This will simulate the start from Milngavie in June.

Going to head up to Guiseley, then along to Rawdon, Horsforth, Kirkstall and Leeds. Then swing round and head back to Otley via Headingly, Adel and Bramhope.

Should be an interesting experiment!

Paint run

Needed another tin of paint for the bedroom today, so decided to run up to Guiseley to get it. Nice 10m route up West Chevin road and down into Guiseley. I wouldn't recommend running any distance with a lire tin of paint in your backpack, however!

Despite being very stiff from snowboarding yesterday, I felt good and strong on the run. Got to decide where to do the long run tomorrow. Might try a late night long run at 1am to see how I cope with getting going at this hour (a la WHWR!)

Nearly done with the painting now :)

Friday, 28 March 2008

More snowboarding

Since trying snowboarding in Scotland last week, I've had a yearning to do it again. Sorry to say there is an absence of both mountains and snow in Otley, so I had to resort to the indoor snow-centre in castleford, Xscape.

Felt a bit rubbish at first as it's one of those retail park places which I loathe, but inside the snow slop bit was actually ok. Took levels 3 and 4 courses today and passed both so I am now legal on the slopes as a recreational user. Took a couple of heavy falls today and am pretty sore tonight. Good job it's a rest day from running! Off for a Radox Bath!

Thursday, 27 March 2008

Last Moonlight

Route: 6m, trail, hilly
Weather: 8C, clear, still (perfect!)

Ran what will almost certainly be the last club 'moonlight' session of the season, as next w/e the clocks shift forwards and our club runs will be in the daylight. That's ok, it means more interesting routes and I can get headtorch practice during the week when I have to go on later runs.

Ran a good, fast, hilly 6ish miles tonight with a couple of guys from the club. Perfect weather for running tonight and enjoyed it very much. Rest day tomorrow, although I'm off for another snowboard lesson at Xscape (indoor snow centre). Won't compare to being on the mountain last week, but I'm going to try and get the technique sorted. Should be fun anyway (and gets me out of painting for a few hours!)

More cross training

Easter holidays bring not only more opportunity for running etc but more opportunity for pesky DIY! Not a great fan, but we've been promising the girls for months. So this has been how I have spent my day today. Going to duck out for a run with the club soon, then home for some more painting :(

At least I had some 'help'!

Monday, 24 March 2008

Cross training

Had the day off running today and did a bit me snowboarding at the Nevis ski centre. The black dot on the slope is me! Great fun!

Why I run

Sunday, 23 March 2008

Home territory

Staying at my mum's for a few days so decided to go for a run up tain hill. This used to be the annual 15 mile school sponsored walk- which took all day long to complete and which i hated! Whizzed round today in 2 hours and loved every second of it. Best run in ages. Total solitude, beautiful scenery and feeling fit and strong. Happy days.

Saturday, 22 March 2008

Last leg recce

ran the last leg of the whw today in beautiful conditions - although a little chilly!
Having spent some time camping up in the hills around the last leg, I knew the kind of terrain I would be facing on this section. The only surprise was the continued undulating nature of the track through to F.W. From Lundavra, the track gets increasingly 'foresty' and the final forest section will be quite tricky when I reach it on the day. Once at the top, the track winds down to F.W. My wife was waiting at Lochaber Leisure Centre which is just off the track, but I'm not sure this is the right place...will check it out with experienced WHWRers today!

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

More night running

Route: 7m, hilly/undulating, road
Weather: 3C, still

Missed the club run tonight as Briony late home from parent's evening. So went out for another late run up the Chevin to Guiseley, and back down through Menston. Wasn't really up for it again, but stuck with it and enjoyed it once I was out. Looking forward to a change of running scenery next week up North.

Recce Opportunity

Heading up to see my Mum and my sister on Friday in Tain, Ross-shire. Briony and I are going to drive across to Fort William on Saturday morning and then down to Kinlochleven. I'm then going to run back along the WHW to Fort William and take a look at the last section of June's run (about 15m). I've done some camping and climbing around here, so I know the kind of terrain, but it will still be good to get on the route and to be able to visualise this last section during some of the more challenging bits.

Looking forward to it!

Monday, 17 March 2008

Mental Training

Route: 4m, trail, hilly
Weather: 3C, still and crisp

Headed out with the headtorch tonight for a recovery run. Nearly turned back at the top of the road as I just didn't feel like it. Decided to carry on though as I thought it would be good mental training. There'll undoubtedly be times during the WHWR when I'll think of chucking in the towel and it's vital that I have the psychological edge to overcome these doubts.

So ran up in the woods on trail terrain, falling once but managing to avoid the jagged rocks (somehow totally unscathed!) and stopping for an uncharachteristic scramble up some boulders half way.

Nice to get out in the end and the legs felt strong and pain-free two days after the Wuthering Hike which is a good recovery.

Went to look for my results today and noticed I'd been missed off (again!), but Brett (the organiser) kindly rectified this for me. I came 94th with a time of 5h 46m 53s.

Good Luck Paul!

Fellow WHWRer Paul Tranter will soon set off for Morocco to run in the Marathon des Sables, a gruelling multi-stage run across the desert in temperatures soaring above 40C by day and nudging freezing by night.

If you get a chance, please visit his blog to wish him well!

Paul Tranter's Blog

Good luck from all at Neville Road!

Saturday, 15 March 2008

Wuthering Hike

Today I had the pleasure of joining a large gaggle of folk on the Wuthering Hike. The Wuthering Hike is 32 miles traversing gritstone moors around Haworth, Todmorden
and Hebden Bridge. It is a challenging run, mainly due to the terrain but also due to a few navigational difficulties!

I also had the great pleasure of meeting 4 fellow WHWRers at the race (photos below). It's great to be able to put a face to the names and it will be nice to see some friendly faces in June.

I felt quite strong throughout the race, although there are some long ascents which I had to walk up. Not too bothered about this though as there'll be plenty of walking on the WHWR. Managed to find the correct way into Hebden Bridge this time down the little footpath and over the bridge.

I finished the race in 5:45ish. Did it last year in 5:20, but it is 2 miles longer this year due to a change of start/finish.


  • Felt strong all the way round.

  • Problem knee not too obvious (although few niggles)

  • Met some great WHWRers

  • Recovered really well tonight without too much stiffness

  • 'Fueling' system seemed to work ok -drank lots of carb stuff prior to race and didn't feel energy lack.


  • Not happy with trail shoes - bashed toenails and bit of blistering

  • Slight groin niggle, think just poorly warmed up

Here is the start of the race in Haworth:

Here is the route of the race:

And the elevation:

Here are the WHW lot:

Marco, Debs and Brian:

Andy Cole enjoying a well-deserved bowl of chilli at the end:

Here I am at 20 miles looking worse than I felt!:

All in all a great day's running.

Friday, 14 March 2008

Eve of the Wuthering

Night before the Wuthering Hike, and I have the usual healthy mix of nervous anticipation, excitement and down-right fear! I always get nervous before a race.

Have packed up my stuff for tomorrow. Early start (6a.m) to get across to Haworth. Will try to publish some photos on the blog as I run tomorrow.

Good luck to all those who are running tomorrow!

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Speedy 7

Route: 7m, road, undulating
Weather: Windy, 9C

Ran with Zack from the club up to Menston. Faster than I had intended, but no probs really. Very windy!

Last run before Wuthering Hike.

Sunday, 9 March 2008


Route: 10m, road, hilly
Weather: 8C, light breeze

10m taper run ready for next w/e's Wuthering Hike. Easy 10m with no probs.

Saturday, 8 March 2008


Route: 6m, road, undulating/hilly
Weather: 9C, light breeze

I had been expecting a raging gale tonight, but it seems I am ahead of myself and it is not until tomorrow that the low pressure is due. Sounds like it might be quite gusty. Not tonight though - just a light breeze for my Pool triangle.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

6m trail with headtorch

Route: 6m, trail, hilly
Weather: mild (9C), light breeze

Good 6m run with Chris up to Farnley over to Clifton down through Weston woods and along Weston lane to Otley. Met two bulls in a field by Weston woods, their eyes illuminated by our headtorches. not sure who was the most surprised.

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Back in the saddle

Route: 9m, undulating, road
Weather: 1C, clear

Having a really bad run like on Sunday can knock your confidence a bit and I was feeling a little hesitant about my run tonight. I had intended to do hill reps with Hugh, but as another club member was heading off to do 9m on his own, I thought I'd tag along for company. We both made the usual noises about a 'steady' run etc etc at the start, but it was anything but steady. Really pushed all the way tonight, running somewhere close to 7m miles I think. I wish I had had my GPS as I would like to know the exact average, but it is still out of action. Anyway, a good workout and a really enjoyable run in perfect running conditions. I'm off to enjoy the endorphins now!

Sunday, 2 March 2008

25m 'bonk'

'Bonking' is the term used by runners and cyclists to describe the feeling you get when you run out of energy and 'hit a wall'. That happened to me today on my long run. Ran to Bingley 5 rise locks, 15 m into a strong headwind, and 10m back to Guisely with Hugh from Otley AC. Bit of a disastrous run.

The positives: Completed my targeted run; I realise that I can't run a long way without breakfast (sounds obvious, but it means eating 2 hours before a run); Found a nice new route; muscles not that sore despite the lack of energy.

The Negatives: Didn't deal well with running straight into wind for 15m; did not feel as psychologically strong as I have previously; did not really enjoy the run.

Overall, I'm not too disappointed as the weather played a big part, but I do need to be prepared for bad weather on the 'big day'.

Saturday, 1 March 2008

Back from Leeds

Route: 10m, road, undulating
Weather: windy

Got the bus into Leeds to pick up ice skating tickets for one last skate before it moves out of Millenium Square. Ran home with no problems, apart from the wind which was in my face the whole way home!

Attempting a 25m canal run tomorrow with Hugh from Otley AC. Out for a nice meal tonight so will fill up on good food :)