New series: What you need to know…

I’ve been doing this blogging thing for nearly four years now.

In that time, I’ve written nearly 20,000 words of mainly stream of conscious gibberish, sometimes poetic insight and hopefully a dirty look into the world of kid from Southampton who got fat then found a love of the world through running.

So explain to me why my most popular post, including heart-rending tales of exhaustion, despair and fortitude, is A BLOODY A TO Z LIST OF PARKRUNS!? Nearly 15,000 hits this year already!!

The reason is because on an internet comprised of over 1,200 petabytes, there is an awful lot of stuff which isn’t massively useful.

Google “how to get fit” and you’ll see millions of bonkers to semi-pro articles about how to drink chia juice and do a thousand shakey arm weight exercises to reduce bingo wings but the actual, scientific facts are very hard to come by.

It’s the same with running. Read my blogs and you’ll hopefully get an idea of the pain and elusive joy I was going through but it probably won’t help you except to say either “that was like my experience” or “that was nothing like my experience”.

When I was training for the Madeira Island Ultra Trail (MIUT) this year, I really struggled to find any information on terrain, aid stations, transport, climate etc. So a little bit like the parkrun list which I couldn’t find and decided to make, I’ve decided to create a series of posts which tell you “what you need to know”.

This isn’t pitched from an elite perspective and will no doubt be very personal in a lot of ways but: What was the ground like? What shoes did I wear? Would you use poles? Were there enough toilets? Did the volunteers speak English? Literally, what tips would you give me???

These are the kind of questions I wanted to know and didn’t really find answers to. Some of them are unanswerable (always the shoes question) but I will tell you what I thought was right and wrong about my choices.

First up will be MIUT because I didn’t finish it and it is still my favourite race ever and I love it and will be back. Just better prepared this time.


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