Sunday, September 27, 2015

The Best Injury Advice I Wasn't Given

I wrote this as advice to my future self, but figured I’d share it in case it could help anyone else out.

Diagnosis: Impacted stress fracture of 2nd metatarsal, left foot. 6 weeks off running completely and a further 3 of rehab.

Background: Running for 3 years, built up to 65 miles/week. A road/trail runner that dabbles on the fell, 32mins-ish for 10k, 15.50 PB for 5k.

Advice to my future injured self:
            1. STOP RUNNING. STOP. NOW. STOP!!!! I had never been injured before, and am ashamed to have said on numerous occasions ‘I don’t really get injured’. B*llocks. There are two types of runner: Those that are injured and those that will be injured. My naivety contributed to my downfall. If it feels wrong, stop and seek medical advice.

2    2.‘Trust me, I’m a Doctor’ Get the right diagnosis, see a real Doctor. When you’re injured, everyone else seems to suddenly become an expert. Ignore them and seek professional advice. Not a physio, not your mate on Strava who ‘once had a dodgy toe so knows how it feels’ (guilty as charged). Go to your GP. This is nothing against your mates (or my mates) or physios, but that’s what GPs receive 7 years of training for and why they are there. I was lucky enough to be diagnosed quickly by my GP and my timetable for recovery was subsequently confirmed by MRI scan.

3.       3. Get back into your routine. As soon as your Doctor allows, get back into a cross-training routine that mirrors your pre-injury running routine as closely as possible. For me this was 2 ‘sessions’ a week plus a ‘long run’ on the elliptical trainer, plus steady cycling/aqua running in between. This has two benefits: It helps your mental state by removing the ‘lost’ feeling from your routine being disrupted, and it also means you hit the ground running (no pun intended) when you’re ready to stride again.

4.       4. It’s an opportunity. Take the opportunity to work on the parts of your fitness that are often neglected. I’m a better climber now than before my injury, and I put this down to weight training and elliptical work. This gives another mental boost to your rehab knowing that you can come out of the other side stronger in at least one way.  I include training your ‘running IQ’ in this, research why you got injured, plan your rehab, plan your future training and your racing goals.

A combination of the above other advice received has helped me recover well and today I capped my recovery with 2nd place at Orton Fell Race, 9 weeks and 4 days after breaking down.

That’s my few pence, hopefully it will help a few people out.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Hardmoors 60 race report – 19 September 2015

Hardmoors 60 race report – 19 September 2015
A beautiful day welcomed runners to the start of the Hardmoors 60 on Saturday 19th September. The race is 62 miles long with 3,500 metres of ascent and mainly follows the route of the second half of the Cleveland Way. It starts in Guisborough and goes up to Saltburn before running down the coast of the North York Moors National Park to end in Filey. There are no particularly high points on the route but many smaller hills, including lots of alternating cliff tops and bays, so lots of steps up and steps down.
The camaraderie in the Hardmoors ultras is great. Runners help each other out with route finding, food and drink; the marshalls are really upbeat and helpful; and the support teams that some runners have are also often kind. I didn’t use a support team in the race but, as I’m vegan and have a dodgy heart that can play up if my blood sugar drops, race organizer Jon Steele had kindly arranged to have my food and sports drink transported to each of the checkpoints. I was strong over the first part of the course but struggled badly from about mile 30 to mile 42 because of dehydration that triggered cramp. This affected quite a few people on the day: although 20C is not that warm by most standards, it was warm enough to have an impact on a long day of running.
However, I was able to turn things around fairly well and finished just before dark in 11 hours 27 minutes in 11th place out of 195. It was my first race since May 2014 because of plantar fasciitis, so I was pleased to finish with my foot intact. Hopefully I’ve also – finally! – learnt two lessons on how to deal with hydration on warm days in ultras in the future: drink enough that you need to go to the toilet during the course of the run; and wear a wet cap to keep your head cool. Still, the result was good enough to put a smile on my face during the hard winter runs to come.
Neil Ford

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Borrowdale 2015

Possibly the most prestigious individual race in the fell running calendar, the Borrowdale Fell Race took place yesterday and saw some excellent performances from the 21 Keswick AC athletes taking park
Such is the prestige attached to the event, The Borrowdale Trophies are awarded to the first Keswick athletes to finish. These honours will this year be presented to Mark Lamb (13th, 3:15.22) and Hannah Horsburgh (2nd Lady, 3:42.59), who were both competing in the event for the first time.
Hannah was joined by Catherine Spurden (3:45.45) and Rachel Findlay-Robinson (4:27.15) to win the Ladies team prize.
Other notable performances included Steve Angus (3:32.55) taking over 10 minutes from his personal best and Kirsten Ogden smashing her 5 hour target with 4:51.06.
The race was won in dominant fashion by Ricky Lightfoot (2:54.14). Jasmin Paris (3:15.33) recorded an equally dominant win in the Ladies race and missed the record by only 15 seconds.
Other Keswick Results:
31st David Birch M45 03:32:37
36th Lee Newton M 03:36:43
39th Sam Ware M 03:37:11
93rd Donald Ferguson M50 04:02:04
106th Craig Smith M45 04:09:59
122nd Tom Loan M 04:16:13
127th Robert Jones M 04:21:02
158th Damian Kimmins M40 04:38:11
164th Keith Loan M55 04:40:42
167th Ivan Holroyd M40 04:42:20
172nd Sarah Massey F40 04:44:11
174th Adrian Bacon M40 04:45:04
179th Annabel Holmes F45 04:47:37
183rd Angela Wakefield F 04:48:34
188th Kirsten Ogden F40 04:51:06
208th Lesley Malarkey F65 05:00:23

Saturday, July 25, 2015

FRA 'Do'

The annual FRA Dinner & Dance is this year being held at the Daffodil Hotel, Grasmere on 21st November. This is a great opportunity for a unique social event with other club members and fell runners from across the country, plus a chance to congratulate those who win medals in the English & British Championships (there will be some!)
We are hoping to block book at least a couple of tables for Keswick AC, and to arrange transport between Keswick and Grasmere for club members.
The 'Badger Bar Blast' Fell Race is being organised on the same day and is in the club championships.
Please register your interest by emailing me at with the number of places you would like - please do not book directly with the organisers as I will be looking to negotiate a bulk discount.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Run ABC North Article

The club are featured in the September issue of Run ABC North Magazine. A taster is posted below, I will bring my copy to training for people to have a browse. Sam.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Club training on Thursday 2nd July

Meet at the village hall opposite Mill Inn at 6.30pm
Run starts from telephone box in Mungrisedale.
A choice of various routes depending on what people feel like doing
and weather conditions. We can do Bowscale Tarn and Bowscale Fell,
Souther Fell or Bannerdale Crags or up to Blencathra itself. Or all
of the above for the really keen!
If anyone wants to stay for a drink and/or something to eat in the pub 
after it would be good to do that too.
Please email me at to let me know if you are coming
so I can look out for you. Also if you require any further information.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Keswick runners set for record-breaking 'Billy Bland Challenge'

This weekend sees a team of 10 Keswick AC Vets take on the 'Billy Bland Challenge', a 5-stage paired relay over the route of the Bob Graham Round.
Starting and finishing at the Moot Hall in Keswick, the challenge covers 66 miles, 28,000 feet of climbing and 42 peaks and is split into the 5 traditional 'legs' of the BG.
The team are aiming to break the over-40 record of 17 hours 16 minutes, and have set themselves a schedule of 16:50. Team captain Nick Ogden said: 'We've all been reccying our respective legs and so we know that we're setting ourselves a very tough challenge. We'd welcome support along the way if anyone wants a run out, or just join us in the pub afterwards'.
Here's the team:
Leg 1 (Moot Hall to Threlkeld): Nick Ogden & Donald Ferguson
Leg 2 (Threlkeld to Dunmail Raise): Chris Brewer & Dave Prosser
Leg 3 (Dunmail Raise to Wasdale): Andrew Slattery & Steve Angus
Leg 4 (Wasdale to Honister): Dave Birch & Dave Troman
Leg 5 (Honister to Moot Hall): Mark McGlincy & Craig Smith

The boys will start at 3am this Saturday (27th) and are due to finish at the Moot Hall at 7:50pm. You will be able to follow them on a live tracker (link below) as well as getting updates here and on our twitter @KeswickAC.
Good luck lads!