Route Selection

Route Selection

So I’ve spent the past few weeks scrolling over some of my old training logs and diaries from 2006-2010 or as I like to call them “The Glory Years” when I was running my fastest times on the road, trail and fell and have selected the key sessions to implement as part of the process to building towards #Run268 over the winter period whilst gradually increasing my weekly run mileage. I will describe in more detail in future blogs some of my specific training plans and key sessions.

official starting plaque

Although training to cover the #Run268 miles Pennine Way is never far from my thoughts it’s equally important to become familiar with every element of the route stretching from Edale to Kirk Yetholm which is a mental endurance exercise in its own right.
My first source of information was the National Trail Website
and the general break down of the whole route

Most participants undertaking the Pennine Way will allow themselves a sensible 16 days and this was apparent from the National Trail Website. As I’ve researched the route it’s become apparent that the way in which I’ll approach the #Run268 distance is by breaking the 16 days into 16 legs/16checkpoints. This would mean that on average I’ll have the ability to be replenished every 11-22miles. Replenished meaning: fed, hydrated, suitably clothed, change of run pacers, massaged, the list is endless but the best way to explain it is to imagine a formula 1 car entering the pit and the crew waiting to resolve any issue.

As I study the route it becomes increasingly apparent the diversity of the terrain that the Pennine Way has to offer from running through lowland valleys to high level mountain traverses and everything in between. In my opinion the stand out “black spot” on the route is the 20mile section between stage 11 and 12 which has over 3000ft of ascent over hard to navigate and extremely exposed areas including the notorious “Cross Fell” which FYI was where England’s Coldest temperature and strongest wind gust was recorded.

My plan over the coming months is to recce all 16 sections of the #Run268 route to enable me to build a mental picture of the course and how I’m going to pace myself accordingly so that there is minimal confusion on the event and I can chase down the current record.
I’m going to state my intention now as I always feel it’s important to be accountable for your actions that I will be running at a 2 days 10hr pace allowing a 7hr buffer on the current record and I intend to run fast enough to allow myself 2 power naps at different stages of #Run268.

I haven’t decided on an “official start time” yet for #Run268 as this will be something that myself and project manager Ste will discuss over the coming months to enable me to cover as much of the toughest stages in daylight wether that be due to the geography of the route or the navigational difficulty I’d prefer to be tackling these in daylight.

Next blog I’ll be discussing pacers, stage recces and sponsors.

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