Sunday, 30 December 2012

Last post of the year !! Las vegas & Christmas

Well I thought I best writing my next blog as Ive been quiet for a few weeks with the busy time of Christmas & running.
So hear it goes since my last post I have been busy with running, more running & a holiday thrown in too.
Race wise I have competed in the Rock n roll Las vegas half marathon & had a holiday at the same time, This race is amazing & I recommend it to anyone, its a great well organised event & where else can you run with show girls, elvis, & even get married on the course!!!
The whole of the strip is shut down to traffic & you run the race at night which is a amazing sight.
I love this event & we were really lucky to have got the chance to meet u with two of our american running friends too :) & we had a lovely meal with them the next day so a big thank you to Robin & Hope & we look forward to seeing you both soon.
Race wise I was pleased with my time, I was hoping for a P.B but the very windy conditions put pay to this as it literally lifted me of the ground at one point on the course, I was still pleased to finish in 1:42 in 499 position out of 22,000.
My dad also ran in the half & he finished in 2:22, well done dad.
If any of my friends fancying doing this race in the future just send me a message & I will let you know the best places to stay & gamble at ;)

Since vegas I have been busy sorting more gear out for the Ocean floor race & sorting out my ECG as we have to send this to the organisers before they let you run.
This was becoming a problem for me as for some reason my doctors were not the most helpful & in the end luckily i have some good ultra running friends & one just happened to be a doctor & arranged one for me ( thank you so Much ) you know who you are.

Christmas time is also the perfect time to get some miles in & this year has been great especially as I got to run in the Sunrise to Sunset race organised by one of my running Denzil Martin.
The idea of this race is to just keep going from 8:30 in the morning to Sunset 4 ish.
The course is off road round a nature reserve in Lightmoor Telford & each lap is less than a mile & its hilly, muddy & wet!!!
I have been told since that this year was the wettest but the friendliest & the most fun.
I was lucky to have my brilliant hubby as my support & he had brought his camera with him (its great been married to a sports photographer) & soon enough he became the official photographer for the day & he stood for 8 hours + with all the other partners & helpers in the rain!!! u were all a great support & I'm sure we kept you all entertained.
I was using this race as a good training run for the Ocean floor race & set off at a nice steady pace & just kept going.
In the end I completed in 49 laps which worked out to 41.6 miles & yes looking back maybe I should of done 1 more lap to of evened it out to 50claps (thanks Ben & Dad for calling me a wimp lol) but I was happy with how I felt & I had no injuries to finish in 7 hours 21 mins in 3rd place overall (2nd female) a massive well done to Nivette Mullan who did 46.2 miles in her first ultra!! & I look forward to seeing you at the tr24.
The race was won by Justin Montague who had a amazing run to do 53.76 miles & a new course record.
Well done to my dad for doing the marathon in a time of 5:35 & helping Kate around.
A great event once again & me & my dad look forward to competing in some more of your races Denzil.

So as the end of 2012 gets nearer I must firstly say a massive thank you to Buff for all your support you have given me in 2012 & I'm sure all your help pushed me on to having one of my best running years to date & I'm hoping to have a even better 2013.

As for 2013 a massive thank you goes out to Amanda Boldy for giving me the chance to compete in the Ocean Floor Race with her , its going to be a epic adventure !!!

Aka Ninja 1 & Ninja 2

Friday, 7 December 2012

A busy few weeks !! Running & meeting friends.

Well what can I say, What a brilliant few weeks we have had !! Since I have been asked to compete in the Ocean floor race with Amanda I have been none stop with running, racing & planning
& literally driving everbody mad regarding this race & not had a moment to think or even get any Christmas shopping done! ( dont worry I will sort this ).

So where do I start well firstly I ran the Valencia Marathon on the weekend of the 18th November. Without a doubt this marathon has become one of my favourites, With a amazing friendly atmosphere brilliant location & the best finish to a race I have ever had the pleasure to run.
I completed it in 3:33 & I loved every minute of it especially running with the 3:30 pacers for the first half ( rather good looking spanish chaps too). What made it good for me as well was that my hubby was working at the event taking photos for marathon photos & my mom & dad were at the finish line to support me.
My dad ran in the 10k & he had a good run too but he wasnt to amused to only get a bag of oranges at the end lol !! no medal.  But he did get a dri fit tshirt beforehand & as it was only 10 euros to enter you cant really moan.
I highly recommend this race if anyone ever fancies doing this race let me know & I can point you in the right direction for a great hotel.

The following weekend we were away again, this time me & Ben travelled down to Amanda's & Karl's house for a weekend of raising funds for Macmillan/Ocean floor race, running & a little job of me doing a V02 test.
So where do I start on the Friday night we both finished work early to get down to the Macmillan fund raising pamper evening that Amanda had organised to help out.  As she had done all the planning arranging etc etc herself and I thought it was only fair to help out after all the hard work Amanda had put into organising this event. I was really impressed to see some lovely stalls there & lots of therapists offering treatments at great prices!!. I also got to meet some of Amanda's family which was nice & Im sure they all think im completey mad too!!
The evening went well & we raised £180 for Macmillan it wasnt as busy as we expected & I could see Amanda was a bit stressed about it been quiet, but hey we all had a good night & thats the main thing.
Saturday was a really nice day & I'm sure my hubby & Amanda enjoyed my V02 testing more than I did lol.  The V02 testing had been offered to me & Amanda free of charge by Advanced Performance
Cambridge & us been down for the weekend had given me a perfect opportunity to get mine done.
So a massive thank you to Advanced Performance for offering us this, even if I did look a sight in the mask in the middle of the store with people shopping lol.  Thanks to Ben & Amanda for taking photos of me doing this & videoing me too, I will get my own back on you both in the near future.
I was pleased with my end result & I was classed as exceptional which I was chuffed to bits with.  It will be interesting to see how Amanda gets on with hers in a few weeks time.
The rest of the day was made up of us visiting Cambridge which is a lovely place & somewhere that me & Ben had never visited before.
While wondering around we got a phone call informing us the Hereward way ultra relay that we had planned on running on Sunday had been cancelled due to flooding.  Which was a shame as we were both looking forward to it !! But hey you cant control the weather. 
When we got back to Amanda's I was asked if I wanted to have a go at INSANITY now if you dont know what this is check out youtube !! 
Amanda has been doing this for a while & I have been driving her mad about having a go at it and my god its hard work !! Give me long distance hard hilly muddy courses anyday compared to this!! But its really good & you can feel the benifits & hopefully in a few months I will see the benefits. I was so impressed with how good Amanda was at it & she put me to shame & I'm sure by doing this it will help us both with our core fitness & this must be good for carrying our backpacks for the ocean floor race in Feb.
After all the insanity madness we all went out for a lovely meal & a good old chat.  It was nice not to have to worry about getting up early the following morning now the race was cancelled.
Sunday now was going to be just a training run & we headed out early (not as early as I'm used too but early enough) one thing I have found out is Amanda is not a morning person & I am soo glad to have found this out now & not in the desert as she can be quite stroppy as we call it in the Midlands lol.  She snaps quite easily (she wont mind me putting this hopefully) where as im quite lively in the morning & chatty.  I reckon I need not worry about the snakes & foxes in the desert but I need to worry about Amanda strangling me instead to shut me up!!
So I have learned a early warning keep quiet first thing in the morning while in the desert!! lol
We ran a nice 13 mile run & had a good old chat.  I think this may have put both our minds at rest about some aspects of the desert race, it was a very enjoyable morning's run.
The rest of the day was then made up of more planning & making lists.
A really good weekend was had by us & once again me & Ben can't thank Amanda & Karl for the hospitality & welcoming us into there home again.  We look forward to seeing them both at our house for a weekend in January.

We have also picked up some more sponsors/supporters this week & I thank you all for helping us.

Firstly Chris Crabtree from Hope has arranged for us both to use there Hope head torches in the desert & Im sure Chris doesn't realise how brilliant this is for the both of us , but even more so for Amanda with her fear of the dark. ( I will do a full review on these amazing head torches a.s.a.p)

Another new sponsor it that of Bloc Sunglasses. Amanda wrote to them a few weeks ago in the hope that they may be able to help us with a pair of sunglasses each for the run to help protect our eyes from the sand & the sun.  Luckily for us Colin Pickering from the head office kindly sent us 3 pairs each which is amazing & really wasn't expected we are both extremely thankful.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

New sponsor News Feetures socks

A couple of months ago I Contacted Feetures socks regarding maybe helping Amanda & I with some socks for the Ocean floor race as I had been lucky enough to have been given a pair to try at the Buff Lightning run this year.
To my surprise they were very interested & I had to forward some information to them & quickly they came back to me saying how interested they were.
So how did I manage to sweet talk a American company into helping us ??
My English cheekiness & charm obviously won them over & they loved the fact that I was running in the Rock n Roll Las Vegas Half marathon in December which fitted in perfect to meet up with them & collect the socks.
So this is how it started & yesterday I met up with Joe Gaither from Feetures at the race expo & he couldn't have been nicer & loved the fact we were 2 girls mad enough to take on the a ocean floor race challenge.
Check out to look at the amazing socks & you can purchase them in the uk from Sweatshop.
Look out for my reviews on these socks soon .

Sunday, 11 November 2012

New Sponsor News.

Well where do i start, I still can't believe how generous & helpful people are been with regards to the Ocean floor race 2013 this week alone we have picked up three more sponsors who will be helping with some finance towards the remaining costs.

Firstly my Dad's company Halco Products (where I work) so a massive thank you Dad for agreeing to help, your support as always is brilliant.
Secondly a massive thank to Don Gemmell from Fleetwood Building Services (one of my favourite customers) for also helping.
Thirdly Music Box nightclub St Ives where Amanda works for also agreeing to help in exchange for there logo on our tops. Thanks Guys.

Also this week we have had some interesting emails/parcels from company's offering us some product support, 

Trion Z have supplied us both with one of the bracelets, I absolutely love these & I find they really do help & I have been a big fan for years. Amanda was a bit sceptical at first as she had never worn one before but she has seen a vast improvement in her sleep alone since wearing one.
Look out for our full reviews soon.

Rocktape has also been brilliant & they have sent us 3 rolls to keep us going in training & in the desert. Full details & reviews to follow.

Shewee are going to be supplying us with there products & I feel these will become one of the most useful piece of kit to have in the desert (Guys u don't know how easy u have it)

Clothing wise this week we had some great news the company Striders Edge will be sponsoring Amanda with some kit for the race.

Where as I will be running across the desert in my Buff sponsored kit. 
Please look out for my reviews on Buffs in my next Blog.

Another parcel arrived at both of our houses this week from Steve from Ultra Running ltd, 
He kindly sent us both a couple of fleeces to keep us warm at night, So a massive thank u from us both for these.

So as you can see everything seems to be coming together nicely, Amanda is getting to grips with her fear of the dark & she is really doing great with that, also this week she has found some new runners to train with near where she lives which is excellent news.
I'm having quite a easy weekend due to racing in the Valencia Marathon next weekend 18th Nov & I am really looking forward to that & I can't wait to run up the amazing finish line across the water.

Sunday, 4 November 2012

Hereward Ultra 2012

Thursday 1st Nov 2012.

We got to the race at 7 am to be told that 5 entries had dropped out overnight !! ( I honestly didn't think I was that scary to meet ) & by 730 no one else had turned up, so there it was just me & Amanda, Steve the race organiser from Ultra Running Ltd, Ben my hubby, our brilliant support crew & Matt & Ellie from Summit Fever our race photographers. I have never been in a race where we have had more photographers than runners ( now I know what it feels like to be famous lol).
So off we went. I had really been looking forward to doing this event with Amanda & also to see how we would get on running together, this was going to be a perfect opportunity & ideal pre ocean floor race training.

To all my friends reading this please remember Amanda has only been running for 3 years !! Not years & years like me & before this event her longest race was 35miles, So I was hoping with some of my experience we would make a good team.

Amanda was very nervous which is understandable & It didn't make it any easier when we found out we were the only entrants in the race!!!
So with backpacks on, maps in hand GPS & our iPhones ( which became indispensable as u will see later on in the race ) we headed off down a muddy track.
Stage 1 not too bad at all it was a mixture of trail & road & we didn't have too many issues.
I was feeling good at this point as our map & GPS system were working well & we finished the first stage. It honestly felt like we had our own paparazzi following us, we had flashes everywhere as we came to our first stop.

After refuelling we were off again, off road & into more mud & fields. The race instructions we were given for this stage were useless & it didn't help that the heavens had opened & it had started to rain!!!! it was bitterly cold, we were both getting a little frustrated to say the least !!! Also Amanda had a little issue with her knees which was worrying so early on in the race, I had to reassure her that at the next checkpoint I whould put some Rocktape on them to sort them out.(I really can sound convincing when I need to be)

We were both getting colder & colder & we decided to get Amanda's iPhone out to double check the route as we knew something didn't seem right about the instructions !! Luckily we were proven right & we were about 2miles off course !!! Grrrr I don't think that was the exact word we both said!! I think the air turned blue for a few mins & then we calmed down got back on track & carried on. The next few miles we were both quite quiet (which I know some of u will find hard to believe from me )but we were both so pissed off from going wrong. Me been a big kid I would jump into the puddles every so often to try & lighten the mood & I'm surprised that at one point Amanda didn't want to push me in the river !! Lol or strangle me.  Eventually we got to the checkpoint refuelled & strapped up Amanda's knee, off we went again.

Stage 3 was great, we were both so much happier on this stage as the maps & instructions were bang on & we had no problems at all, Amanda ran brilliant on this stage & my magic Rocktape was working, we were both very positive about everything & we were running well together.
We must have ran a lot better than expected as when we got to the checkpoint my hubby Ben, Steve the race organiser, Matt & Ellie the event photographers were no where to be seen & nothing was set up!! Thanks guys ;). luckily they all sprang into action when they saw us & it was really was like having our own personal slaves looking after us ! I'm sure we will never do a race where we were so well looked after.

At this stage it was now starting to get dark & it was time to start thinking about getting our headtorches ready, now this could of been a disaster if I hadn't been prepared ( good job I was a venture scout when I was younger ;) ) Amanda was trying her new raid lite backpack out & somewhere along the course her bag had opened & her Headtorch had fallen out!! ( This was a brand new headtorch which hadnt even been worn yet !!!! doh Gutted, Along with her biscuits !!!  Luckily I had won a Headtorch earlier in the year at the Buff lightning run & it was in the car, so luckily we could continue.

This stage I knew was going to be a problem, I honestly think if more runners had of been in this race this stage wouldn't of been as bad as it was. As we may of been able to follow or at least see someone else around us. So this is how our final stage went.

Well where do I start, I am aware that Amanda has a fear of the dark & she won't mind me telling u all this. We were two women on our own in the pitch black no lights to be seen anywhere & I mean anywhere over farmers fields. We were meant to be on a track keeping the river to our right, I could not see a track & there was no god damn river in sight.

So what do u do ?

I don't scare easier but this wasn't nice & what made it worse was because I knew Amanda didn't like the dark I had to put a brave face on & act as if I knew what to do!!!
So once again the iPhone saved the day if Amanda hadn't downloaded the o.s map of the route onto it god knows where we would of ended up.  Please remember we are both bitterly cold & have over 40+ miles in our legs at this stage, I'm not feeling too bad but I could see Amanda was getting more anxious as we went on & I was getting very concerned about this. I could see that I needed to calm her down.
The worst thing was all She was concerned about was the fact that it would look bad for me if we didn't finish!! this was the furthest thing from my mind, as the whole idea Of me doing this event with Her was to see how we worked as a team for the ocean floor race In Feb.  We then stopped for a min or so while we got ourselves together & got our bearings. Luckily we found our way to our last checkpoint. Where Karl Amanda's hubby was now also waiting to see us, this would be where our race would finish after 47 miles, we both made the decision as it was just too dark & dangerous to carry on. Ok we didn't finish the whole 54 miles & I know Amanda was absolutely gutted about this but I was really impressed at how we got along running together & how when the going got tough we pulled together as a team to sort it out I honestly think if this race had of been started earlier maybe 6 am I feel we would have had no problems getting to that finish line.
One good thing that has come out of this I feel we will make a great team in the desert & we will have a great adventure & a good few laughs along the way & honestly we won't get lost lol.

I must say a massive thank u once again to my hubby Ben for been a great support team on the day & for ferrying us about. Also a massive thank u to Karl Amanda 's Hubby for letting us stay over at there house for 2 nights & showing us some lovely hospitality it was much appreciated.

So that's how our first race prep for the ocean floor race went & I'm looking forward to our next training session in a few weeks on some sand.

I also think this sums us both up !!

Any Idiot can run a marathon .. It takes a special kind of idiot to run a ultra.

Please keep a eye out for some more very important sponsor news in the next day or so !!!

Monday, 22 October 2012

Great Ocean Floor Ultra sponsorship/funding news.

Well what another brilliant week, Amanda & I have both been busy emailing, facebooking, chatting, blogging to as many people as possible telling them about our race next Feb.

My amazing hubby Ben has been brilliant telling all his friends & work friends about the event & we are really pleased to announce that Wayne from J & M electrical Wholesalers in Burntwood, Staffordshire has agreed to help part fund our trip with a lovely donation of £900 towards the cost of our entry fees.  We both really can not thank J & M Electrical enough for doing this & we will be running with his company logo on our kit.

So to any of my friends who live in or around Burntwood please visit J & M at Unit 2 Morley road to buy your electrical bits.

I have also been very lucky to have been emailed by Mimi Anderson the amazing ultra runner & guinness book of records holder, she has offered me loads of tips & advice which im really gratefull for, she may regret offering this help as I may drive her mad asking questions.

I also feel really lucky to have loads of brilliant running friends who are really supportive & helpfull & I cant thank u all enough for helping me & offering to help.

My training has been going well & i'm getting the miles in with my training partner (my dad) .As my training increases i'm so pleased that ive been running to & from work with my back pack on for the last 5 years or more & I feel that this will give me a advantage in the desert. (hopefully)

Also I have tested the for goodness shakes nectar in Blackcurrant flavour on Saturday's long run & yep i'm very impressed, a lovely flavour not too over powering & I had no stomach issues which I sometimes have with other brands. 10 out of 10, my dad also liked it so its thumbs up from the both of us.

Keep a eye out for more exciting news this week .

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Today's new sponsor

A new sponsor - Advance performance
I am pleased to announce that we have a new sponsor in the form of Advance Performance of Peterborough and Cambridge.

Sam Hale owner of Advance Performance has kindly offered to give myself and Amanda a free V02 Max test which I am sure will be a massive benefit with regards to training efficiently in preparation for the race so THANK YOU SAM.

She will also be writing a press release or two on us which will be excellent advertising for the event and for our chosen charity MacMillan cancer support.

For those of you who have never been to advance performance - what are you waiting for !!! it is like heaven in a shop; you can find them either in Peterborough or Cambridge for those who don't live nearby they also have a website which I have linked below so get shopping.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Exciting Ocean floor race news.

Well how quick does a week go when you are busy !! It just goes to show how quick the ocean floor race will come around lol .
Well we have both been very busy with running , planning & working & contacting companies for help with sponsorship.
Today we had some good news & a massive parcel delivered to both of our houses from the lovely people at
They have agreed to help us by supplying us with sports drinks & recovery shakes.
I absolutely swear by there recovery shakes & I used them doing my 24 hour thunder run win this year.
I can not recommend them enough!!!
I look forward to trying there new nectar fuel in the next few weeks & I will be trying out there new race gels too.
I will keep you updated to how I get on with them.
Keep your eyes peeled for some more very exciting news over the next few days.
Oh I nearly forgot I have entered the hereward ultra today & this will be my first race where I get to run with Amanda , I'm really looking forward to seeing how we get along on this & I will post a blog to let you all know.

Ocean Floor Race

So the Journey Begins !!

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.So throw off the bowlines,Sail away from the the safe harbour.Catch the trade winds in your sails.
(Mark Twain 1835-1910)

Well this is how it all started.

On the weekend of the 6/7th October I was contacted by my running friend Amanda Boldy who emailed me to tell me that she had won a competition on Facebook the fat feet competition to win £700 off race entry into the Ocean Floor race ( my first initial thoughts was damn I had entered that!!! ) straight away I offered my help & advice if she needed it ( I'm no expert but I do love ultra running ) & thought no more of it.
Then off I went to work , while there I was telling my dad about it & he said yep u do realise Amanda has won 2 entries don't u ??
I hadn't & it wasn't till later in the day when I contacted Amanda again that yep she had won 2 & she was actually sounding me out to see if I was interested in the other place !!
Well this was a opportunity not to be missed especially as the entry fee is £1695 pounds so £700 pounds of the entry was a once in a lifetime chance.
Luckily my hubby & mom & Dad agreed & I told Amanda yep I would love to run it. We also decided to run the race together as we have both never done anything of this magnitude & we could help each other.
So this is how it all started & now we are writing , emailing & generally bugging everybody we know for advice , help & funding for the trip as we still have the balance to pay & flights , kit etc etc to buy.
Luckily we have some wonderful friends & contacts & the lovely people of Talk ultra are giving us a spot on there show before & after the event !! Which is brilliant & running free mag is going to be following us.
The lovely people from Buff have also agreed to help with kit & we should have some very interesting news in a few days about a big sponsor fingers crossed .

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Red Bull steeplechase challenge Oct 2012

Me & my dad entered this race months ago thinking we wouldnt get selected to compete & to our surprise we both did :)
Now to people who have not heard of this race i will explain how it works ,
Competitors are split into 2 categories male & female, all runners in each category are set off together making it a head to head race,forget time as its place which is important!
There are 4 steeples to reach & at each of the first 3 the slowest section of the field get eliminated.
With only 40 runners in total running the full 21 miles ( 10 women) & 30 men.

So off we head to the peak district ( a massive thank u to my mom for driving us) as my hubby was working at the chester marathon .
A very foggy morning greated us on our travels & I was hoping that this would lift or the race would be a nightmare.
We got to the start up at Castleton & looked at the surrounding scenery (gulp) it was hilly , gorgeous & beautiful also but very hilly, ( good job i like hills ) yes i know im strange lol
Race briefing done & off the men went, they were starting 15 mins before us women.
My dad was in this & he looked concerned as most of the men in the field looked either elite & at least 20 / 30 years younger!! (he wont mind me mentioning this) tough as hell my dad!!
The race was started by the local town crier which was a nice touch & the men were off!!
Straight up a massive hill!! Men were on there hands & knees & afterwards I heard by my dad that 2 chaps had actually threw up at the top.(nice)
Then we were next & then we were off gulp im sure I have never done a race with such a short run up to a mega hill, legs were burning & heart pumping & up & up we went, the view from the top was amazing & it took your breath away if only i had time to take a photo!!
My aim for this race was to finish in the top 10 & run the full distance without been eliminated, which was a strange foremat for me as with my ultra running im stronger later into the race, with this one i had to go for it from the start,i tried to get myself into a nice rythym but with the terrain been so hilly,muddy & undulating this was quite a task, but me been me I gritted my teeth & went for it , the first steeple was at 8 miles & I needed to be in the top 25 at this point to make it through to the next stage, I went through the first stage in I think 7th place & there were about 5 women pretty close behind, so i knew i had to keep plugging away ,
The next stage was just as hard hilly , muddy & complete with stiles & gates to go through !! would this race get any easier the answer was no, its funny as I was more concerned about staying in the top 10 than the distance & i was feeling pretty good and more & more confident that I would make it & I was starting to pull away from some of the other women, I did get passed by 1 and I was quite pleased because at least for a little while I had someone to follow as I was scared of getting lost as some of the race arrows were very small & at some points u needed to have your wits about you to make sure u went the right way. ( this I will go into more details later !!)
So I got to the next stage in 8th position & now the women were down to 15 & I was in the clear by a good few mins from the next person ,
This stage was 5 miles long & I ran 90percent of this stage on my own with one women in the distance & I couldnt see anyone behind, quite a strange feeling with there not been many marshalls & the odd walker every now & then to pass,
This stage for me could have completely ruined my race if I hadn't come across a couple walking , I had been running for about 3 mile & was heading to edale yha & instead of turning right I went straight down the road & now as I was on my own I was getting a bit concerned as i hadnt seen a arrow for a while, luckily at the bottom of the road a came across a couple who I asked if they had seen any runners & there answer was no!!
Sh#t I had gone the wrong way, so I had to turn around & run back up the road re tracing my tracks & hoping that I hadn't lost to much time or more importantly places!!
Yep I looked at the top of the road & yes there was a arrow I had missed damn damn damn & another female was just heading towards me , at this point I was mad with myself for missing the arrow & I asked the lady what position she was in & to my horror she said I think 10 or 11!! Gulp now I had to do something quick & with less than a mile to go to the next elimination point I realised that I may have completely cocked up my race!!
Head down & off we both went I was really hoping that we werent going to outsprint each other to get the final spot, as we turned the corner the clock/counter signalled that 8 women had gone through before us , so luckily for me no sprint was needed & I was actually the 10 th female to get through by the skin of my teeth.
So now I had reached the final stage & had 3 miles left to go, as we turned the corner straight in front was another big hill, this was were I had to make my move . As the female in front looked like she was struggling & this would be my chance to catch her & catch her I did , I wasn't going to be the number 10 in this race .I could see I was slowly catching the lady in front, as we got the top of this hill I was told by the marshall that the last 2 miles was down hill ( I did tell him that he best not be lying ) & I would say this was the easiest bit of the course ( thanks guys)
With 500 metres to go I knew I was safe in 9th place & was running out of course to catch the lady in front as she had also sensed that the finish was near,
Around the next corner & I saw my mom & dad shouting me on , & at this point I had just a road to cross & there was the finish in Castleton village.
A big well done to my dad for running this race & you did well to beat some of the younger chaps in the race.
This has to be one of the hardest races I have ever done, but also one of the most enjoyable, scenic & best value for money events around, (ok they maybe could of done with a few extra marshalls, & bigger signs maybe ) but all in all for the 1st year I give it 10/10!!
We got a lovely medal , a red bull hoodie & 2bags , a red bull towel , free food at the pub at the end ( & even the chef did me some vegi food) & as much free drinks as u wanted.
All in all a brilliant event.
And after all is said & done as Buff say 's Flat is Boring!!

Look out for my next blog which will feature news etc etc on the biggest race I have ever entered The ocean floor ultra 2013 with Amanda Boldy 160 miles across the Eygpt desert.

Friday, 3 August 2012

The Adidas 24hr Thunder Run 2012

What a amazing weekend this turned out to be!!

Where do I start , well firstly I have been going on for the the last few years about me & my hubby getting a campervan/race van for my ultra events & finally 2 weeks ago Ben purchased a Mercedes vito van!! Ok this isn't a camper, but 2 weeks later with me & Ben working on it we now have Bertie the Buff Mobile, this been our home for the Thunder run weekend.

So on Friday 27th July me,Ben & my dad set of to Catton park the home of the Adidas tr24 thunder run, as always I like to be early & we were there just after lunch, to get a perfect pitch in the solo field by the start/finish line.
This was one of my first big events where Buff were present & it was great to meet two like minded down to earth sporting individuals who like me love the Buff products.
Thanks Heather & Harry your support was brilliant all weekend !!

The event this year was the biggest yet & since it is the Olympic year Adidas had arranged a giant screen for us all to watch the opening ceremony!! ( This was a great idea)
We lasted about 30 mins before we headed back to our camper for the night .( not that we didn't want to watch it , but I didn't want to be tired for the race the next day.

Race day.
Up nice & early for porridge & to sort Buff kit & make sure everything was ready for my race, once again I was very lucky to have a brilliant support team consisting of my hubby, sis in law Rosie, my soon to be Bruv in law Rob, running friends Nat & Tony & not forgetting my mom & mom in law who both came along through the day but didn't camp due to looking after my dog & not forgetting my doggy mascots Hendrix & Dexter .

12 o'clock Sat race start.
This year me & my dad both had a aim of how many laps we wanted to do & we both knew if we stuck to our plan then hopefully it would work ( & I would run over 100 miles )
So bang the gun went & off we all went nice & steady not to get dragged by some of the fast relay guys & girls.
The course had been changed this year due to heavy flooding etc , which was perfect for me with my love of hills & I felt great for the first few laps & I got myself into a nice relaxed pace.
I had told My hubby that I didn't want to know what position I was in as it was such a long race & anything could happen
Once again it was a very warm day & I was really hoping for it to cool downs bit, luckily around 4/5 ish it was starting to get cooler.
My hydration & eating was going great & I felt really good , this went on till about 2/3 in the morning & then I started to get tired & I honest thought I was going to fall asleep running , my lap times started to slow & luckily my hubby told me to stop & have a little rest , this comprised of me getting in the campervan for 45 mins with a hot water bottle on my legs.
This amazingly did the trick straight away & after my power nap I drank some For Goodness Shakes & I ate a homemade lemon curd flapjack & then Ben ( my hubby) dropped the bombshell that I was in about 4 th place ( thanks) & he told me not to worry & keep plugging away at the laps & to remember the Hare & the Tortoise.
So off I set out again & I felt not to bad at all, the marshalls & the crowds were brilliant with some lovely friendly comments I had its that solo Buff girl again, Go Buffy & u look good in the Buff lol that one did make me smile after running for hours.
The next few hours I just kept plugging away until Ben suddenly told me that I was in 3rd place & I was catching the 2nd place female with every lap!!
I think it was on my 16th lap that I passed the girl who was in 2nd place & she had started to walk, So I thought I was pretty safe with the next girl been a good lap behind & time was running out.
At the start my aim was to beat last years 16 laps where I finished 2nd female & I had always wanted to run over 100 miles ( as up until this race my dad was the champion in our family as he had already done 100miles in 24 hours when he was a bit younger ;)
& I had told Ben that my ultimate would be 18 laps, so when I came in after my 17 th lap, I just had to go out out again as I had enough time ( a massive thank u to Tony Wallbank for running my last lap with me) also it looked like the girl who was winning had stopped for some reason , but I wasn't 100 percent certain so I just went for it.
You really can't believe how adrenaline gets u & my last 10k was run in 1.11 not to bad after 23+ hours on your feet.
As I came down the finish line it was the most amazing feeling to see my family & friends tell me that I had actually won 1st solo female completing 18 laps (112miles).
A massive thank you to my support team for all the help u gave me this weekend, u are all amazing & I owe u all big time.
A massive thank you to Buff for supplying me with my amazing comfortable kit & it's great to be part of Team Buff Uk .
My Dad did amazing to complete 10 laps & a massive thank u for all those training runs which we have done in the early hours & it just goes to show if u put the effort in you get results !! ( next year 12 laps for u dad ;) x

The icing on the cake for me is that I have won both of Patricks races in the same year Tr24 & The Buff Lightning 12 & then too find out only 3 men beat me in the thunder run this year with the winning man doing 20 laps & the 2nd & 3rd both did 18.

So next year boys watch out as I'm coming to get u !!!

Sunday, 17 June 2012

The Holly Challenge marathon 2012

This is one of those events which I was lucky enough to have been invited to by my fellow running friend Denzil Martin.
So what's the challenge element I hear you all ask, Well it's 26.2 miles offroad & it's undulating , ( I think that sums it up) & throw in lots of mud & the fact u have to run the same course 31 times then a little bit at the end. There u have it the Holly Challenge.
Saturday 16th June 2012 I will remember this date as I think it's one of the only marathons I have ever done on a Saturday, off we set to Sunny Telford ( no that should read cold & wet Telford) to find the race , after a slight problem finding it we eventually found the start down a lovely lane in the middle of a nature reserve.
I was liking the look of the course straight away as I always seem to run better on undulating courses :)
We were set of at & straight away Charlie Sharpe went into the lead , a place he stayed for the whole race & he finished in 3.34.
When I mentioned earlier that the course was undulating I wasn't lying, 1st lap u went down a little hill then up a longish steady climb, then down again, & then up again u can see how this went on, I honestly don't recall any flat bits at all :)
I was very lucky to have my mom & dad at the event as my hubby was working in Denmark, and they made for a great support team, passing me drinks & sweets when I needed them.
I was passed quite early on by the leading lady who was running very strong!! I continued on & kept plugging the laps out & me been me chatting to fellow runners as I passed/lapped them ( thank you to all the runners who spoke to me as I passed) especially the chap who kept calling me speedy Gonzales . You all did really well on a demanding course.
I finished in 2nd position in the ladies & I was really pleased with my performance as I was catching the leading lady with every lap ( if only it had been a ultra lol)
My time was 3.57 pleased to get under 4 on such a tough course & more importantly I felt fine & could of continued, which was my main aim of me doing this race, for some good training for the 24hour Thunder run at the end of July & the good news is it also gave me chance to test my Team buff kit out, which of course was very comfortable!! My new Hoka shoes were awesome & I am really pleased to have spent the money on them now!!
A big well done to Sarah Turner & Karl Randall who both got injured quite early in the race but grit & determination got them both to the finish.
Last but not least a massive thank you to Denzil & Lucy & of course my new best friend Meg the marathon running springer spaniel for organising a lovely event & we will be back maybe in December ;)

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

The 2012 Buff Lightning run

The buff lightning run,
Saturday me & my dad were dropped of at eastnor (malvern) to pitch our tent ready for the following days 12hour Buff lightning run,
You would not believe how much stuff u can fit in a small car & we were only going to be there for a weekend!!!
Tent up,kit sorted and a lovely gentle run around the course with my Dad & our welsh buddy Carl Maus , to check out what we had let ourselves in for!
A lovely course with a great first 2k straight up hill ( good job i like hills) & mostly off road.
I was really looking forward to this event & this course looked like it would suit me down to the ground.
Bring it on!!

Sunday 25th March,
Race day.
Alarm clocks were set for a 4 a.m start to give me & my dad time to have some porridge before the race briefing at 5.30.
Kit on, food eaten , table set out , trackside for quick food & drink retrieval !
The race started At in pitch darkness , so we all needed our headtorches on for the 1st lap.
& we were off , i had decided to run the 1st few laps with my music on to concentrate & not got to fast, this worked perfectly and i got into a nice steady rythmn, which i kept going,
5 hours into the race & my support team turned up.
Unless you run a ultra u really dont realise how important support crews are, mine once again were superb, passing me sweets, drinks, my hat when it went really hot & they also kept me informed on how the other women were getting on.
They also give u a kick up the arse when u are knackered & i rememember my hubby Ben & sis Rosie telling me after my 9th lap to go on u still have time to reach your goal and get 10 laps in !! The exact words from Rosie were grab your hat and do another lap!!
At this point in the race i was 2nd female , not knowing how far the 1st female was in front i was determined to keep my 2nd place as i knew the 3rd place female was a strong runner(louise Clements),
So off i set , at this point there were not many runners left on the course, so i went for it ( well as much as anybody can after 50+ miles) & i didnt feel to bad ,determined not to be caught by Louise,
Its amazing how adrenline kicks in and after about 8 & 1/2 k of the last lap i looked in front and in the distance i good see a female who i reconised from her pink nike trainers & i knew i could catch her the runner was Brigid Browne who was in 1st place & she was walking , i really dont think she realised it was me when i past her , but i wasnt stopping & went for it , with shouts from my hubby , dad , sis , i knew i had won & i was loving every last step.
So i thank once again my amazing family for been the best support crew & my dad for been the best training partner & getting up at all hours for our training & not forgeting my mom for her famous secret recipe flapjacks which kept me & my dad going :)
my dad also had a great race & completed 7 laps .
The race was sponsored by Buff & the prizes were brilliant , this was a great organised race by Patrick & his team ( the guys behind the 24hr Thunder run) & i would recomend this race to everyone.