Final Countdown – Lakeland 50

Lakeland 50 Ultra – The Final Countdown Part 3

As we approach the final 25 days of training, we’ve been reflecting on our progress so far. Despite the intensity of the training plan – fitting it in around our work schedules and the pure volume of running – the mileage we have covered to date blurs in the memory!

Sure … there have been weeks of slight niggling injuries; illnesses; missed training sessions as a result of work and home life commitments; kit failures and replacements; and adverse running conditions … but we’ve still managed to notch up weeks with 75+ miles, varied our training session content and terrain, and essentially, kept moving … and looking back now, it all seems a bit of a blur!

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We did our first trail run together back in January, running out and back for 4.5miles in the freezing cold, turning round at the top of what was an impossible hill to climb, wishing we’d brought some fluid, then taking approximately 30mins to get the sensation back in our fingers as we sat shivering over a coffee in the cafe at the car park. Clearly on that day, the task at hand wasn’t being taken seriously!

Looking at how differently we prepare for every run now is testament in itself to how far we’ve come. A 9 mile run is considered a short mid-week trot, weather is checked frequently to ensure the right kit is both worn and taken along (just in case – thanks to Berghaus it all weighs virtually nothing – check out the ‘VapourLight’ kit), our personal nutritional demands over longer distances are better understood and we follow a structured recovery process after each run. We’ve learnt how running this kind of mileage a week commands a lot of time, attention and recovery around it but also the support of your family. Whilst we’ve experienced the physical and mental demands of the training, our families have endured the extra workload at home in our absence – without their support, there is no way we could have attempted this challenge … THANK YOU!!

So .. as training for the Lakeland 50 reaches its climax, reflecting on what we have already achieved genuinely surprises us. Going from running and suffering 9 miles in the forest, to running more than a marathon one day followed by longer than half a marathon less than 24 hours later, feels … well … it feels rewarding already. We hope, and will try our best, to complete the challenge of the 50 on July 26th, but irrespective of what happens, this whole process has fuelled our desire to try more.

Our ‘Do Before I Die’ lists are the result of training for this challenge… With a bit of luck, good planning and strong family support, maybe .. just maybe, they’re achievable too!


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