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Running Show 2012

Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th November saw the 2012 running show at Sandown Park and having registered for free entry myself and Gareth decided to visit on the Sunday.

The venue for the Running Show 2012

The show was a great place for exhibitors from all areas of running to come and talk about their brand/website/events company etc, promoting new products. We made a point of getting there early on the Sunday as the organisers had emailed in advance advising that the first 1500 attendees on each day would get a goody bag, not one to pass up a freebie we made sure we would be in a position to get one.

After collecting the goodie bag (which incidentally was ok but not great, a couple of nutrition samples accompanied by a lot of leaflets) we got chatting to the guys manning the Find a Race stand (

Find a Race is a new website with the aim of being a one stop shop for searching for all manner of races, not just running. It’s fairly new but the team are working hard to get more and more events listed. You can search for activity type, location, date range and I really like the idea of a website that consolidates all different races into one place. While chatting to them they asked if Gareth and I wanted to “Step Up” and commit to a challenge for 2012. With my challenges already set for 2013 I committed to a time on the 100 miles, my “Step Up” is to run the NDW100 in under 24 hours. Having decided this I had to write the challenge on a white board and step on a podium to have my photo taken.

The Find a Race stand

Opposite the Find a Race stand was the Torq stand, those that have read other posts in my blog will know that I am partial to the Rhubarb and Custard Torq gels and seeing that they had free samples we headed over. One of the guys on the stand had a chat with us and offered us a sample of the new recovery powder that they are doing. I tried the Chocolate Mint flavour, which was quite tasty although a sample to take away would have been more useful as I could have tried it after a training run.

Picture of the Torq stand

Gareth wanted to get a massage so he went and booked that and we had a wander around while we waited, where we happened upon the Runners World stand who were offering a frankly unbelievable deal.

For £15.00 every 6 months for a subscription to the magazine, they were offering a goody bag filled with around £70.00 of running goodies.

The bag consisted of:
The Complete Guide to Running
Running Training Diary
High 5 Race Pack
Camelbak Delany Plus waist pack

It was a no brainer and both Gareth and I signed up. Gareth went for his massage and I sat and listened to one of the seminars, once he was done we had more of a wander around and when fully satisfied we had seen everything headed home. Below are some more pictures that I snapped while wandering around.



Snowdonia Marathon, quick update

I will be doing a full review in the next few days but until then I thought I would do a quick post with my results and immediate feelings

Time – 04:41:19
Place – 1019

It was a tough race and a tough route but I am very pleases with the result, a PB for both half marathon and marathon time. I went through a whole range of emotions and all sorts of pain, more on that in my review.

Hopefully by the time I do my full post I will have some pictures to include, the only one I have at the moment is me ready for the start.

Legs a lot fresher than they were at the end

Our ancestors and running

A quick post while I am watching prehistoric autopsy. They are looking at our one of our earliest ancestors, Homo erectus trying to build an idea of how and why we evolved in the way we have.

They have been looking at a skeleton of a young boy, named ‘Nariokotome boy’ building a picture of what life was like for him 1.5 million years ago. The reason I am writing about this is that the discussion is touched on how he was evolved for long distance walking/running.

To list a few of the reasons that they have discussed:

  • He evolved to lose body hair to enable efficiency in sweating and managing heat during persistent activity
  • The inner ear evolved to enable him to maintain focus on the distance while his head was moving around
  • Based on the skeletons shape, the size of his glute muscles
  • The shape of the skull and muscles around the neck so the head remains stable when in motion

This is not a new topic, with many books on this topic (Born to Run to name one) but I still find it fascinating that as a species running is in our blood, it is something that we evolved to do in order to travel, to hunt and to survive.

If anyone ever says that running is bad for you (risk of injury etc) just say that we have been doing it 2 million years, so it can’t be that bad!

100 miles?

This the question I have been asking myself since the NDW50 in August. My feelings immediately after the 50 miles was “no way”, with me instead wanting to get some more 50 mile Ultra’s under my belt before tackling double that distance.

Sitting here now, 2 months on my feelings have changed. I have been thinking about why I wanted to do a 50 mile run in the first place, I have a desire to reach the limit of what I am capable of, to get to the point of failure. Now most people would be expecting for me to say “and push through it” but if I am honest that is not why I am doing it, don’t get me wrong I wouldn’t go into it hoping to fail, or to fail because I didn’t but the effort in training. In some ways to reach the limit of my capabilities is to potentially not be able to continue, be it 40 miles in, 60, 70 or even 99.

With the registration for the North Downs Way 100 fast approaching I have little time to make a decision, one which I will make together with my wife (as she is the one who suffers the absentee husband, out on his 4+ hour training runs). With the NDW50 now on a different date it is easier to build in that run as part of the training for a 100 mile attempt.

It is quite a difficult thing to explain, this type of rational behind why I want to do this. Most runners wouldn’t contemplate this, going on the assumption that the goal is to finish. This maybe what separates individuals who compete in Ultra distance vs. other running events. The challenge is not always to succeed, but to know yourself and you limits.

Could this be mine?

Ten Questions About My Running

I have seen this post on a couple of other blogs, namely Fit for a Year and Gareth Davies PT, the questions originally started on another mother runner blog. I figured I might as well add my responses to the questions.

How long have I been running?

It all started with and another guy, Simon, doing a Duathalon and then deciding that they wanted to do the Grim Original and asking if I wanted to join in, this was about September 2010.

What is my most memorable run?

Surprisingly it isn’t the North Downs Way 50, it isn’t even a race. The most memorable run I have done was a training run, the first time I every hit the Marathon Distance. This run was a milestone that cemented my path to the Ultra, and gave me the belief that I could achieve it with training and willpower.

Three words that describe my running.

A title of a book that should be read by all wannabe Ultrarunners “Relentless Forward Progress”

What running shoes do I use?

Several different ones, I own New Balance Minimus MT10 and MT00 as well as New Balance MT110, I am looking to get some MT1010 in the near future as well as some Minimus Road.

NB Minimus MT10
Do I have any quirky habits while running?

My left foot tends to stick out when I run, I sometimes look like a paddle boat going along.

When do I run, morning, midday or evening?

Mornings, although I am having to rethink my training plan with the daily commute on the bike.

Does the weather stop me running?

Sometimes, I really dislike running in the rain. I will do it, but some days I will have a bonus rest day!

Have I ever had a running injury?

I had an IT Band injury for a while, switched to barefoot shoes and this improved and eventually resolved itself. Currently dealing with intermittent forefoot pain on the left, but again treatment does seem to be working (RICE)

I felt most like a badass runner when……

Finish line at the North Downs Way 50

A pretty good feeling crossing that line
My next race is….

Snowdonia Marathon