I have completed the event a number of times since 1993, and am definitely a Mr Average, with a PB of about 4 hours 20 odd and a worst time about an hour longer. I eternally chase improvement and for me the key is in getting the weight down and fitting in some quality training around my work and family life. This year is going slightly better than average I would say and one of the reasons is in my rejuvenated ability to fit in some running.
In my 20s my first love was fell running but after a nasty ankle injury I had to easy off on the running and concentrate on the bike. In part a family visit from brother in July encouraged me to get out onto Dartmoor with him for some early morning runs, where I concentrated un uphill running and found that, with due warm up and stretching, I could get away with the occasional run. I took the gamble and splashed out on a new pair of super cushioned shoes and I must say that this has worked wonders for me – because demands on my time often take me away from home and, critically, away from the bike. This summer I have had a family holiday in France and slotted in some early morning runs whilst my young sons cycled alongside coaching me (as illustrated in the pic)! More recently I have found myself running in the dawn along the side of a Western Greenland Fjord on field work, and last week in the along a lake side of the Danish Lake District, near Silkebourg. It seems to be working, I have lost nine pounds in about 6 weeks and yesterday my standard 70 minutes road cycle circuit was reduced to 65 minutes and I had a certain bounce to my pace. So far so good, now I need to start working on the intervals and sharpening up my off road skills. See you next week – if you are in Dundee early on Tuesday morning or Bristol on Friday. I am the big guy pounding the streets in my Nikes at about 6 am. Have shoes will travel. Phil.