Panic stations


It occurred to me at the weekend that it’s only a month until the 3 Peaks fell race and only 8 weeks until the Isle Of Jura fell race. I’m doing them both. I did the 3 Peaks last year and while I did ok it was a very uncomfortable experience due to an over-eager start, so this year I’m aiming to finish in better shape than last time even if that means I’m a few minutes slower.

I feel very fortunate to have bagged an entry to the Jura race. I know that some people would give their right arm for a place on the start line of this one so I’m very chuffed indeed that my speculative email to the organiser explaining that “I’ve done a bit of fell running but mostly some bits and bobs of cycling in the past” and asking “would I be wasting my time even bothering sending an entry in?” seems to have paid off. I need to brush up on my navigation though. Apparently getting lost in this race means a bit of a rubbish day out. Simon’s advice was “don’t lead the race”, so I’ll be sure to bear that one in mind. I can’t get lost anyway; me and Dave are riding to the start and back again and he’ll be stood around, holding my coat. Probably plonking himself within arm’s reach of the distillery.

Anyway, all this means is that right now, this week (should have been last week but I caught a cold), I need to step up the running by quite a lot. I’ve been running for a few weeks but nothing like the kind of mileage I should be doing if I’m going to avoid dying on my arse. The 3 Peaks is an offroad marathon with three mountains in it. The Jura race isn’t quite as long but it’s got seven mountains in it. In fact, the Jura race packs in a quite staggering two-and-a-bit thousand metres (that’s METRES, not feet) of climbing. Get in 🙂

Four weeks after the Jura race, it’s Mountain Mayhem. Does long-distance fell running mix with 24 hour mountain bike racing? Will the reduction in bike-specific training in favour of running help, hinder or make no difference at all to my performance in a long mountain bike race? Watch this space and find out.

The rest of 2014 has got loads of amazing stuff lined up, including a bit more 24 hour racing (obviously), a few more local XC races, some summer midweek cyclocross races if I can get away from work on time, a bit of MTB marathon racing, some singlespeed racing and an ace project involving me, a mate and a tandem. I suspect I’ll end up sleeping outside in a bivvy bag more than once as well…

None of this stuff involves me dragging a bike bag through a crowded airport, thankfully.





2 thoughts on “Panic stations

  1. We chatted about Jura on email – a little like your bike sand race thingie, all I’d say is it’s a long way to go if the cloud is at 150 feet and you run the whole thing on a compass, so get to know the route inside out and get ready to navigate – just in case…! I only finished Jura when I was a slacker and when I got fitter I had a navigational nightmare – along with 60% of the field that year – in low cloud. But it’s still a great trip / place / ceilidh !

    Did two 3 Peaks fell races because – like you I felt I’d gone out too hard up PyG and so forced myself to do another. I took ten minutes off the next year but still felt dead for the last 6 or 7 miles. But you’re an endurance beast.

    Enjoy both!

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