Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Ben Nevis Race

Well the months of training had been very hard. These last few weeks I had ramped up the training to a level that had me questioning what I was taking on. I have been asking a few of the top fell runners how much training they actually do. I set my plan last winter a to be fair it has paid off. I will never have the genes of a top runner but before I hang up my fell shoes I must be able to say to myself that I have given it 110 per cent.
I couldn't really do anymore training and having a job at the same time. So the hundreds of hours on the bike and on the hills will either pay off or not.
The Ben Race is the highlight of my year. 2 hrs of pain and suffering running up and down Britain's highest mountain.
I was aiming for a sub 1.50 time as last year this is what time I did on the nail.
So armed with my lucky penny in my bumbag I lined up and started the race.

I took it steady until the Red Burn as the previous races have taught me. You def have to save something for the descent on this one. I hand in the tag to the summit marshal and go, head down but no flat out yet. The cairn field speeds by and I actually let the two runners in front go away from me.
As soon as the steep rocky section starts I floor it. One or two dicey moments pass but I don't fall. In my head I have practised this a hundred times. The grass bank appears and I have already told myself that pain or no pain I'm blasting down it. All goes well and I am soon flying down the main walkers path. This year the road ha no fear for me as I'm so zoned out that all I see is the 30mph sign that I have told myself must get too on the road. After that its a quick run round the field and through the funnel.
1 hr 41 Min's and a few seconds.
Its taken five long years to get there and my best run at the Ben.

Basically the penny kept me safe.


  1. absolutely bimin' fantastic daz!!! out of interest how much climbing do you do in your training for this? and can i borrow your lucky some time?!! ;)

  2. just checked the results...top10!!!!!!! you must be so pleased!

  3. Great result! Kate asks about the amount of climbing in your training - I'd be interested in some info on the overall training you've done and how that compares with the top runners you asked.

  4. Daz CONGRATULATIONS what a fantastic run. Awesome: we are all delighted for you.

  5. Kate i do lots of climbing. Every run i do is hills. I cant tell you exactly in feet as i am not that detailed in my training. But its a lot

  6. John since i was forty, thats just over a year ive trained 2 hrs a day. Bike and running.
    So i suppose i do two sessions a day. Lots of the top runners i have asked do this. Its very hard week in week out but if you want results then thats what you do. Its worked for me.
    Others may get away with less but not me. And a lot of those sessions are hard.

    I ride lots of miles on my roadbike. Also ride the rollers a lot.
    When its minus ten and ive been on the rollers for an hour in the shed listening to kasabian over and over again i do question what im doing.
    I was fortunate enough to have a good chat with a top fellrunner and also a very very very good ex pro rider.
    Both gave me good advice
    Basically stop playing at it and train harder.
    So 14 hrs a week.
    Im lucky in that i enjoy the repetition of it all.