When people say that the hardest part of a triathlon is actually getting to the start line uninjured, they probably aren’t thinking about the kind of incident that nearly did for me recently. Anyone can stub their toe on the hotel bed. Or spill a scalding cup of tea over themselves. Or sprain their ankle [...]
As far as bike crashes go, it was pretty minor but it still shook me up. As I lay on the pavement along the main drag in Palma I realised I was lucky to be relatively unscathed and not to have wiped out any fellow riders taking part in what was a truly spectacular cyclesportive [...]
The Easter weekend saw the start of one of the high points in the ultra-marathon calendar – the sand- and sun-blasted Marathon des Sables that involves a six-day challenge across 251km of Moroccan desert. I did it myself in 2011 – the most expensive self-catering beach holiday I have ever been on, as I may [...]
There are worse New Year’s resolutions to make than deciding to take up running. It was in January 1999 and my very first run, if you discount ten minutes, pounding a treadmill in an air conditioned gym, was in London. I drove to a park with a friend who was an experienced runner and kindly [...]
The volunteer was insistent. “Hurry, hurry! NO! Don’t sit down! You can’t stop! Keep moving!” I was at the penultimate checkpoint on the UTMB – some 43 hours into the one of the world’s ultimate ultra-marathons and the biggest challenge of my running life. Here I was at La Tete aux Vents, high up in [...]
There are so many races happening all over the UK every weekend and they pretty much rely on the goodwill and enthusiasm of volunteers to keep entry fees at a reasonable level for those of us who want to run. One day I’ll put some real work in, give something back to the running community [...]
Jodie Stimpson is one of the UK’s leading female triathletes. At only 25 years old, she recently won two Gold Medals at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow – one in the women’s triathlon and then in the team event alongside the Brownlee brothers and team mate Vicky Holland. Last year she finished runner up in the ITU World Triathlon Series.
The 100k (62 miles) Race to the Stones is pitched as one of ‘the most accessible ultras out there’, catering for the rapidly increasing number of ultra runners for whom it seems that a marathon distance of 26.2 miles isn’t long enough.
On Sunday at 1.30am, when my head torch finally failed descending from Bovine, I still refused to believe that having come this far, the race would beat me. I stumbled and fell in almost the pitch black on the descent down to Trient, desperate to make the next cut off.
A year-and-a-half ago I’d never even heard of the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc – the craziest most extreme ultramarathon of the lot. But the moment I discovered it, a little light went on, and it’s stayed on all this time. The UTMB – 100 miles across the Alps with 10,000 metres of elevation – has consumed my waking hours ever since and even a few my dreams.
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