Fueling

I’m learning the importance of proper fuelling these days with longer, tougher runs and have been making good use of my TORQ fitness products.

As part of Trail team 2014 I had the chance of pushing my body to the limits around the Alps last week and thanks to the easy system that TORQ have created its so simple to grab a gel,bar and energy drink on the move when you need it and enjoy the delicious flavours, my favourites being the mango bar, raspberry ripple gels & lemon drink!

It’s so important to get the correct fuel into your body when your pushing hard and I’ve found that using TORQ products in between other food delivers that and gives you something to look forward to eating which helps with general focus and helping you to push through when you are feeling fatigued.

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Berghaus branded photograph by our awesome photographer Reuben Tabner

A jaunt up Arran’s highest

This week I’ve been mainly taking to the forestry trails and fitting in a few after work runs along the village of Lamlash.

I’ve been wearing my lovely new kit from Berghaus and using my Torq fitness products to fuel me over the longer runs.

As I had a day off work today I thought I’d head out on some more technical terrain with my new Vapour light claws.

I’ve covered 30 miles in them so far this week and am impressed at how light they are compared with my Salomon’s.
They seemed to be quite wide on my feet to begin with but after a few miles of running in them my feet felt very comfy and light and I’m now enjoying the fit of them.

I also had my new Hyper 22 pack out with me over the week too which I’m finding really comfortable especially today when I was carrying all my extra hill kit.

I set off with my faithful furry friend Cassie this morning and took to Arran’s highest mountain to give my shoes a good test on more technical ground and enjoy the challenge of the mountain.

This was my first time up here since the Goat fell race a month ago so it was nice not to be racing and test out some nice new gear.

The shoes did good and so did the new pack!

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Exploring Glencoe

On Sunday morning myself and partner Mark headed to Glencoe in the Scottish highlands, an area I’ve wished to explore more of for some time and also a great chance to gain more of a feel for the place before the Glencoe mountain marathon in October.

I packed my running stuff too and managed to squeeze in a stunning wee run from the Glencoe mountain resort along the West highland way and back, what a place!

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The weather was completely amazing and we took the opportunity to get some great hill days done throughout the week.

 

Day 1 – Buachaille Etive Mor –  A fine mountain day traversing all four summits( including two Munro’s) with some steep scrambling on the initial ascent. The weather was very hot by mid afternoon and the going was tough with our heavy packs but worth every minute! Special days like this in the mountains are to be treasured!

 

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Day 2 – Buachaille Etive Beag –  Another brilliant forecast and after yesterday, time again to plaster on the suncream, put on the rucksacks and head out for our second challenge .

The Buachaille Etive Beag is smaller in size to its neighbour( Buachaille Etive Mor) but still includes three summits( including two Munro’s) with an interesting, airy ridge to the final summit of Stob Dubh.

 

 

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Day 3 – A day of taking it easy.
After a nice long lie in our hobbit house and a breakfast of kings at the Glencoe mountain resort , we decided to take a drive into Fort William and enjoyed the day relaxing and thinking about possible options for the following day.

 

 

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Day 4 – Meall a Bhuiridh and Creise – After a day in Fort William yesterday and looking up at the Ben from the Ben Nevis inn, we had discussed possibly attempting the CMD Arete to Ben Nevis but with the forecast giving fog for that area in the morning we decided to stick to Glencoe for our final day and do Meall a Bhuiridh and Creise. Another fine day with a great wee scramble on the connecting ridge to Creise.

 

 

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Sitting on the summit of Creise looking out over the great mass of surrounding peaks made me think of  Steve Birkinshaw  and his epic challenge of conquering all the 214 wainwright’s in under seven days ( which he has now finished and smashed the record-WOW!!)

My main goal is to be able to run some big routes in these mountains and with people like Steve to inspire you, anything is possible.

I arrived home from Glencoe yesterday afternoon to two lovely big boxes full of Torq goodies which I can’t wait to try out and help fuel me as I up my training.

 

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With less than two weeks to go until Chamonix, I’m feeling ready to be inspired further and take on the challenges that are to come as part of the Trail team 2014.

 

With only a month to go until I meet up with fellow TeamTrail2014 folks and fly off to Chamonix, I thought I’d share what I’ve been doing over the past few weeks.

I have just entered the Glen Coe mountain marathon in October, which is one of my major goals for this year.http://glencoemarathon.co.uk/

This is a fairly new event set in the Scottish highlands and takes in some of the most amazing scenery the country has to offer.

With the race being the full 26.2 miles and with 1608m of ascent, I’ve been having a look at a plan for my training and studying local routes where I can incorporate a similar effort.

At the moment I am building up the distance on my long hilly run(s) and continuing with speed work, tempo and easy sessions throughout the week.

If I find that I have the energy on a rest day( And with a little help from Torq nutrition) I’ve been going a long cycle which is nice for a change and it seems to be helping with muscle soreness too.

Arran has miles and miles of forestry trails as well as long glens and steep ridges.

Over the next few months I have plans of completing some big local mountain routes as well as continuing to train on forestry trails.

I’m looking forward to sharing my new routes!

 

 

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Trail Team 2014

Well, after a week or so of not quite believing it I have now reached the stage of absolute elation after being told I have been chosen to be part of http://www.trailrunningteam.com

At the end of June the six of us https://www.facebook.com/trailrunningteam/posts/1437010036558094:0 will be heading to Chamonix where we will be given training like an elite athlete in some of the most stunning surroundings on earth.

Philippe Gatta https://m.facebook.com/profile.php?id=153506284835462and his wife Anna will be meeting up with us to inspire us further and we will be testing out all the best gear from

http://m.berghaus.com/home

http://www.torqfitness.co.uk

And

http://www.ledco.co.uk

Really excited to have been given this opportunity and looking forward to the up and coming year as a member of Trail team 2014.

Goat fell race 2014

Last Saturday was the annual Goat fell hill race on Arran which I’ve been focusing most of my training for.

It was a challenging day weather wise but it all added to the excitement.

Arran Mrt www.arranmountainrescue.com marshalled the hill to ensure all the runners made it up and down safely. Without Mrt supporting these hill races, they wouldn’t be able to run.
I think it’s important to keep these races going as it’s part of our history and it’s nice to see that the insurance to cover Mrt teams has been sorted out.

My first attempt of this race was last year, where I made the mistake of going far to fast in the first few miles and burning out fairly quickly. I also didn’t have the knowledge I do now with regards to proper nutrition.

This time I made sure I was stocked up with gels & energy drink from http://www.torqfitness.co.uk
I can’t recommend this stuff highly enough. The gels are really tasty, easy to swallow and most importantly don’t leave that residue in your mouth that you sometimes get with other products.

Last years time over the line was 2hrs 10mins and I literally had to walk for a good majority of the way as I had raced off at the start.

This year I ran my own race, a tip a friend had reiterated to me by message a few hours before the race.

I kept myself focused and ran the entire way until I reached the boulders just past the shoulder. From here it was the spider man sprackle up to the summit where I was greeted by my good friends and MRT marshals.
They were doing a grand job in the torrential rain.

It was raining hard the entire race and I was aware of how slippy it was underfoot on the way down.

I had a couple of “nearly!” moments on the way back down to the shoulder but managed to let my feet do the work & disengaged the brain a bit.

Past the shoulder, I gained more speed and managed to fly past a few safety conscious(sensible) runners.

I flew down, ripping open another Torq gel to keep me going when I hit the flat again at the castle drive.

I’d managed to catch up with a runner who was going at my pace so I stuck behind him, focusing on his feet.

It was a short while later that I was met with a mouth full of stones.

I can’t remember falling but knew id fallen hard.

I lay there for a few seconds working out if I’d damaged my neck but I was ok so I jumped up, wiping away the blood as I had put my teeth through the inside of my lip.
There was quite a lot of blood but apart from my mouth & gravel burnt chin I was ok and good to keep going.
The guy in front had stopped to check if I was alright but after I’d assessed myself I told him to keep going.

20 minutes later I was crossing the finishing line in a time of 1hr58 and although I looked like I’d been in the wars, I was a very happy bunny for beating last years time !

A great race which can hopefully continue to run for a long time.

The Trail running team 2014

I was one of the Lucky 100 runners chosen by http://www.trailrunningteam.comto take part in an amazing weekend of trail running under the stunning setting of Helvellyn in the Lake District.

The weekend was incredible, with inspiring talks from Steve Birkinshaw and Helene Whitaker! I was even lucky enough to force myself out a third run of the day on Saturday which I spent running with Helene and another lucky trail runner James.
Helene is a truly amazing person in everything she has achieved and I’m so honoured to have met her and shared that run!
Steve is another amazing runner and has also achieved incredible things!
We all listened in awe as he told us about his up coming challenge of running all the Wainwrights in one go, hoping to also break the record http://stevebirkinshaw-wainwright2014.blogspot.co.uk/?m=1
Helene and Steve are both athletes for Berghaus http://www.berghaus.com/en/ber2012/athletes_2/athletesoverview.html who also gave us a talk on what they do and how they design and produce products to best help their athletes and athletes alike.
The super light weight range they have is great for packing light and I’m definitely going to invest in one of their Vapour storm jackets (the lightest waterproof on the market) and their VapourLight HyperTherm reversible jacket which keeps you cosy one way and cool the other.

Torq fitness also gave us a very interesting and educational talk on the importance of nutrition and how their products work to help with endurance and getting the correct amount of carbohydrate intake every hour (90g).
Their three products combined- gel, sports drink and bar gives you the perfect 90g of carbs and the fructose added in their products allows for the quicker absorption of carbs into your system.
We also had a free taster of products and I can tell you they are delicious!( esp the raspberry ripple )
All of their products have natural ingredients too which I really like!
href=”http://www.torqfitness.co.uk”>http://www.torqfitness.co.uk

We also had a look at LEDLenser products which allow for better vision on those night time runs
http://www.ledlenser-store.co.uk

All very interesting and informative!

A superb weekend organised by the team at http://www.freestak.com
Staying at the beautiful, home away from home, Helvellyn youth hostel.

I left the weekend feeling on top of the world after meeting some amazing fellow runners, sharing our passions, achievements, future plans and just the general joy of what we all love to do!

Here’s a few pictures from that incredible weekend!

p>Below Helvellyn with fellow runners from the Trail Team Lake District weekend

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