Sunday, 15 January 2012

Marathoner or Ultra-runner?

I ask this question in relation to the upcoming MK Marathon. I was geared up to commence training in the new year with the aim of achieving sub 3hrs on 29 April (a big aim and not one i'm sure I can achieve simply because of the training time required. The training has started but if I'm being honest my motivation to spend the next 14 weeks fixated on speed to achieve one goal simply isn't doing it for me. What's more, spending all (or most) of that time pounding out the miles on the roads isn't very appealing either.

And so enter the solution and the answer to the question posed above. Am I a marathon runner or Ultra runner? I'm an Ultra runner God damn it! And whilst Snowdonia was the exception to the rule when it comes to marathons with its stunning scenery and tough terrain most are dull and flat. I need more than that if I'm gonna stay motivated!

As all Ultra runners know the Ultra offers an altogether different challenge and one which I'd much rather get out of bed for over the next 14 weeks on the cold weekend mornings. So comes the solution to my dilemma - I'm ditching the MK marathon in favour of the Fellsman! I think it was fate that both events fell on the same day. Unusually so for the Fellsman which is usually in May. I ran this event in 2010 and it was quite simply awesome and definitely worth a return visit.

I feel a hundred times better having made this decision and am thoroughly looking forward to the prospect of hitting the trails again in ernest. Its been far to long. Another BIG factor to this decision (yet one that still has to play out) is the UTMB ballot which takes place this Friday! I have a 1 in 2ish chance of getting in and would be gutted if I don't. I hope fate will also deal me the right card here. If I do get into UTMB the build up to the Fellsman and the race itself will be a key component to my training. A road marathon on the other hand would have been complete folly! The Fellsman is 61 miles and 11000ft of climbing. UTMB is 104 miles and 30000ft of up, and so quite comparable.

What I'm not saying is that I won't pursue the sub 3hr marathon in the future. It is still a goal of mine but one that can wait. I'm a Ultra runner and right now I wanna run some trails! Bring it on.

1 comment:

  1. Bring it on indeed. I'll add a woo hoo for good measure. I'm in too. Time to get daunted and pray for decent weather.