Wednesday, September 02, 2009

You can't do too many ultras, can you?

I've decided to do the River Ayr Way (RAW) a week on Saturday - if nothing else it should be good training for the 24 hour race. And at least it won't involve running / climbing / scrambling up hills, unlike my session on Monday after work when I joined a few guys for a 'run' to the top of Arthur's Seat in Edinburgh. I have no head for heights at all, and therefore find hill running a bit of a struggle, even on 'easy' hills like Arthur's Seat. I would love to be able to do it, because I miss out on a lot of excellent races, but just can't. I'm too scared. So until I conquer this fear (and stop being such a big girl's blouse, as I'm sure the mad Aussie will say) I'll have to restrict my running to the trails, roads and (very occasionally) the track.


Keith Hughes said...

Nahh - you can't do too many ultras, and you can't do too many miles ... It's all about timing.. You can do too much blouse wearing and in your case, too much looking down ! Enjoy !

John Kynaston said...

Go for it Ian!!

Have a great run and ENJOY it.


Brian Mc said...

Blouse wearing, now you could set a first by running the WHWR in full drag. :-)

Subversive Runner said...

Excellent!! Super Duper! Looking forward to RAW even more now mate. Re: Arthur's Seat- that's a crackin' run mate. When my ma-in-law loved me I used to run it every day when I stayed with her. Now she just wants to throw me off the top. She was none too impressed either when, before my son was baptised in Edinburgh University chapel, I carried him up and down the Crags on my back!! It rained while we wrere atop and I skidded all the way to the bottom on my arse, leaving a layer or two of bum skin.

Davie said...

Ian, enjoy the RAW. I'll try to get down after attending the SAL AGM. I'll be due some light relief!
I'm not great on heights myself but my main problem is coming down not being up there.Like most life's little challenges it can be addressed. It just takes a bit of help and you and I can't really say we don't have anyone who can assist!!!

Anonymous said...

Good luck with the RAW Ian.

On the subject of hillraces. I try and do a few and posted information to Silke when I saw she fancied doing Ben Nevis race some year and was going up this Saturday to spectate.

Here's some of what I posted.

...I'll look out for you at Ben Nevis. I've a couple of already crocked ankles and have kind of missed much training (excuses in early) but I hope to get up and down safely at least after falling badly and breaking my hand last year before limping to the finish. It's a classic event. Try and get up to the half way point and watch the kamikaze descending down the 'Green wall'.
I'm sure you'll manage it next year.

(she wasn't familar with the route or the 'Green Wall' so I explained).

The race route can be found here.

You can either park at the Ben Nevis Inn (pub, prob busy!) or the main Ben car park in Glen Nevis and cross the river by footbridge to pick up the path.

The race starts in New Town Park 1:00pm (pipers), comes along the single track road for about 1 mile(opposite side of river from Glen Nevis road) passes the Ben Nevis Inn/Achintee farm, then follows the Tourist path to approx halfway. (See map on Scottish hill racing site). Where the race path then splits. The runners go up the left fork and come back down the right. This coincides with the path becoming rougher(up) and the down bit (grassy/boggy/some boulders) back to the fork is the green wall. The higher up you go past this fork into the second half of the race it gets totally bouldery and scree covered and some mental running down boulder piles is required.

The fork area allows you to observe the conga on the way up and then folk sliding back down the only grass/boggy bit into the red burn and back up onto the Tourist path....then hammer down that as best as your tired rubber legs and detatched brain will allow. Trying not to trip and fall on the boulders when the gravity speeds you downwards like Usain Bolt!!!

After spectating a nice beer awaits you when you walk back down to the bottom of the path and the Ben Nevis Inn. By then I'll hopefully have staggered back along the road and collapsed in a heap on the finish park grass. I may even make it to the beer tent. I'll certainly have earned my miniature of Ben Nevis whisky.

.....any of this whet your appetite Ian for a nice hillwalk to spectate..or have a go? I hope it doesn't put you off. It can be quite an exciting and adrenaline filled day out!!

Maybe see you Marshalling at the Comrie hill relays next Sunday?...if you're not too burst after the RAW.
All the best,

Anonymous said...

sorry should have put Bob Allison on Prev comment

allybea said...

Yes you can do too many ultras! Bloody stupid question if you ask me.

Reasons -

1. You're 43 and your body can't take even more pounding
2. You work ridiculous hours
3. You have a daily 3 hour commute to work because we live in the sticks
4. Your diet would need a complete overhaul to fuel any extra training
5. You don't have enough time as it is to fit in all the running you would like to do so where are you going to find the time to practise running up hills? Eh?

Don't ask ultra runners if you can do too many ultras. Ask someone sensible with an unbiased opinion. Like me!!!

Debbie Martin-Consani said...

Is that a rhetorical question?

Don't ask somebody sensible (uh hum , like Allybea) you'll only get a sensible answer.

Hopefully see you at the end of the RAW. I'll try and be a bit more organised and figure out directions in advance.

Debs x