Thursday, June 19, 2014

Hawkshead 10k Race Report

Wednesday night saw the third race in the club road championships, and a hatful of great performances by club members.

The Hawkshead 10k, starting and finishing in the picturesque village of Hawkshead and consisting of a loop of Esthwaite Water, saw runners tackle the high heat and humidity as well as some nasty hills around the course.

None of this perturbed Steve Hebblethwaite, in superb form after setting a 5000m PB last week who led from start to finish, cruising to victory in a time of 34.24. Sam Stead and John Beetham soon followed to secure the men's team prize, and Julie Carter took the LV50 prize to top off a successful night for the club.


1. Steve Hebblethwaite - Keswick 34.24
2. Sam Stead - Keswick 36.20
3. Karl Lee - Wesham 36.31


1. Melanie Hyder - Helm Hill 38.26
2. Heidi Dent - Howgill 39.11
3. Catherine Farrow - Ilkley 40.22


9. John Beetham 38.22
16. Adam Campion 39.11
30. Simon Jackson 42.38
33. Julie Carter 43.12 (1st FV50)
35. Keith Hill 43.23
86. Duncan Overton 48.29
87. Annabel Holmes 48.29
88. David Rice 48.35
115. Kim Clark 51.11
123. Steve Harwood 52.11
146. Rachael Collins 55.46

The next club road champs race is the Lambfoot Loop, 1st July in Cockermouth (

Monday, June 16, 2014

Race The Train

Is anyone interested in doing "Race the Train" on Saturday 16th August. There are two main races of 10km and 15 miles. Both multi terrain and should suite fell runners. Its in Tywyn (mid Wales coast) The main race attracts around a 1000 runners and there is a big doo (hog roast usually) and prize giving on the Saturday evening. We (me and friends from all over the country) always make a camping weekend of it travelling down on The Friday evening. For more information go to If you are interested in going email me at

Keswick Midsummer Festival Races - Thursday 26th June 2014

Keswick AC is organising 2 Fun Races from the Fitz Park Pavilion as part of the Festival. 

All abilities welcome, run at your own pace. The races are free to enter! Refreshments will be available.

Junior Fun Race Around the Park: About 1.3 km, starting & finishing at the pavilion, mostly following the tarmac path around the park. Register from 5pm, START TIME 5:45pm. Organised by the Keswick AC Junior section.

5K Fun Race: An out-&-back route - see map. Start & finish at the pavilion. Flat route. Round the park path, out onto Station Road round to the railway line & back. Register from 5:30pm START TIME 6:30pm. Minimum age limit of 11years on the day.

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hardmoors 110 race report

A few thoughts on how the race panned out for me - tea and biscuits time ;-)

Link to Dave's blog

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Failed attempt to complete the Hardmoors 110

I tried and failed at my first attempt to run more than 100 miles. The Hardmoors 110 is a 113 mile trail/easy fell race around the North York Moors. It mainly follows the route of the Cleveland Way, starting in Helmsley, crossing the hills and moors, and then follows the coast from Saltburn down to Whitby and Scarborough before ending in Filey. The race began at 8am on Saturday morning, with runners required to reach Filey before dark on Sunday night.
My first half of the race went well. A dry morning was followed by a wet and windy afternoon on the hills but it cleared up by early evening. At 58 miles at Saltburn, I felt strong and confident that I would finish, having worked my way up the field to lie in 5th place. However, I dropped out at Runswick Bay, 12 miles down the coast, after my ME symptoms began to kick in. Ultras are full of ups and down. At one moment you feel like you cannot possibly go on because of lack of energy, stomach aches, leg pain etc. Then a couple of miles later you bounce back and are raring to go. For those used to running marathons, it is like hitting a series of walls but with peaks in energy in between.
In this case, however, there was nothing I could do. To keep a very long story short: I had first been ill with probable Lyme Disease seven years ago. This affected my heart, lungs, brain, spinal cord, hearing and vision, leaving me housebound. Once the Lyme Disease faded away, it left me with ME, which in my case shared many of the same symptoms as the Lyme Disease. Rehab was long, slow and painstaking. From being housebound, I began a programme of graded exercise, gradually being able to walk to the end of my drive several times a day and then increasing the distance only very gradually, months later reaching a mile. A year later I was up to 10 miles. I continued to increase the distance very slowly, as any significant jump in distance triggered illness. I’d always wanted to do ultra marathons and decided to build up to one.
The long training runs of most ultra runners are just 30-35 miles, albeit off-road and on hills, but I made sure that I could complete the distance in training before attempting any race. This is good for mental strength but is not considered the best training strategy for speed! I completed my first 55-65 mile races last year and also managed 65 miles in training. All the advice that I gleaned from books, websites and more experienced ultra runners was that I would be unable to complete a 100 mile race after running the same distance in training. I convinced myself that having run so far in training that I’d be ok in the Hardmoors 110 and the ME was the least of my worries in preparing for the race. I did my last 50 mile training run 9 weeks before the race and concentrated on speed. However, at about 68-69 miles I began badly shivering and overheating, became dizzy and my eyesight began to fail. I knew the signs and sadly retired from the race. I went for my first run just two days after the race and felt fine. This fast recovery suggests that I’ve got a good level of ultra fitness that was not tapped in the race, which is both welcome and frustrating as I ended the race with too much in the tank.
I’ll now have to go back to Plan A and resume my fortnightly long runs, hopefully pushing beyond 70 and then 80 miles over the course of the summer, depending on the amount of climb involved. I really enjoy them in any case. The 95 mile West Highland Way race could be a good option for next year before I make another attempt on a 100 miler. While off-road, it’s got less total ascent than either the Hardmoors or the Lakeland 100.
For those considering doing a long ultra, it’s worth pointing out that the atmosphere at the race was great. Runners helped each other out with food, drink and navigation and there was a big round of applause at each checkpoint. Dave Troman of KAC came a magnificent 2nd in the race (please get in touch Dave. I’d love to have a chat). There was also a 160 mile option over the weekend, with runners starting the evening before we did. I saw two of them half carrying a third up a hillside. The funny thing was that my wife Caz, who ran to support me on a 12 mile leg in the dark, was so impressed by all the suffering that she plans to do one next year. We're a funny species!

Neil Ford.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Autumn road relays 2014

The dates for the autumn road relays are now available and are as follows:

Sat 13th Sept - North West Road Relays (Men's 4 & Women's 3 Stage) - Stockport
Sat 20th Sept - Northern Men's 6 & Women's 4 Stage Relays - Birchwood
Sat 4th Oct - ERRA National Men's 6 & Women's 4 Stage Stage Relays - Sutton Park, Birmingham

The fell relays this year are as follows:

Sun 5th Oct - Ian Hodgson Mountain Relay
Sun 19th Oct - British Fell & Hill Relay Championships

If you require any further information please contact Men's Captain - Steve Hebblethwaite.

Keswick AC at the Northern 6 Stage in 2012

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Pics from Latrigg Race 2014

Mostly Keswick AC runners - even some of the ones not wearing Team Kit!