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Welcome to my blog which I hope to develop with some interesting material on ultra running both on the trails and road including reports on races and interesting training runs, views on kit and equipment as well as anything else I find of interest. I love running for adventure, opportunity and well being. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 4 October 2011


I’ve just reached the end of my post-UTMB refresh and I'm definitely raring to go again now. After a solid four weeks off running, my Singletracks are now dusted off and back in action and I’m looking forward some great autumn trail running around Dorset and the south coast of the UK. Cooler temperatures, the stunning autumn colours in the forests and plenty of mud – happy days.

You may wonder why it’s only four weeks that I’ve taken off, when its actually been five since UTMB – well I was up in the Lake District on a TNF photo shoot immediately after UTMB, and I wasn’t able to rest properly when I was up there (running back and forth all day is not really resting), so I thought I would hold back on the proper rest until I got back. Also, what else do you do with spare time in the Lakes, other than hit the fells?

The training I put in for Western States and UTMB earlier in the year was tough, and both races fell relatively close together, so I decided the best way to get ready for the final part of the season was to take some proper time out. There were several aims for the time out period, but the key ones were allowing a little time for a small ankle niggle to heal properly, giving my legs a proper rest from running and to do some quality cross training/ conditioning work as primary training rather than secondary. Well you didn’t think it would be complete rest did you?

I loved the change in training – gym sessions, loads of miles on my road bike, hiking and swimming. None of it even comes close to the enjoyment I get from trail running, but the benefits have certainly prevailed and it's all given me a renewed spring in my step - both mentally and physically.

So now plans for the final few months of the season/ year are clicking into place. I’m targeting The North Face Endurance Challenge final in San Francisco, early December, and in the build-up I will run the Snowdonia Marathon at the end of October.

My training for the Endurance Challenge wasn’t great last year, so I’m looking forward to a fresh approach this year. Snowdonia provides a great build up; it’s a tough, hilly, road marathon, but super-fast and intense, and the best race I have found to replicate the Endurance Challenge course in the Marin Headlands. It’s not the first time I’ve run it, Snowdonia was the second marathon of the three day ‘triple’ which I did several years ago (Beachy Head, Snowdonia & Dublin on consecutive days), although conditions were horrendous that day, much like it was for my Snowdon reps earlier in the summer. Hopefully on race day it will be more like it was last Wednesday when I managed a quick afternoon hike up Snowdon before a talk I did for TNF at Plas Y Brenin. So you can sometimes see the top of Snowdon?.....

Snowdon, from the Watkins path - 28/09

View from Snowdon ascent - looking WSW - 28/09