Tag Archives: running

CRAW – region 7 completed!

A lovely short region this one, travelling 1,989 miles up from Singapore to Bangladesh that we started on 9th May and finished on 6th June, a total of 29 days.

I was top logger of miles for the team again this region, totalling 322.98 miles, putting me 52nd for the region at time of finishing, and the team 28th.

As a team we have now completed 7 regions (of 12) racking up a total of 18,790 miles in 284 days. Our average miles per day is now 66.16, putting us on target to complete all 12 regions within 457 days, well within the 486 day target for a silver buckle.

CRAW – region 6 completed!

A shortish region this one and team This Is The Way managed to complete the 2,088 miles across the islands of Indonesia in a total of 32 days, starting on 8th April and finishing on 9th May.

We did overshoot the target number of miles due to not keeping on top of logging miles daily (especially towards the end) which is a shame as more miles could have been counted towards the next region which travels North through Malaysia, Thailand and Myanmar.

I logged the most miles for the team again with 366.63 miles, which put me (at time of completion) 43rd individual highest mileage for the region. The team was 19th with the overshoot.

We have now completed 6 regions (halfway in terms of region count) racking up 16,801 miles (over halfway in distance) in 255 days. Still on target for a sub-16 month completion time and that silver buckle.

CRAW – region 5 completed!

Team This is the way has left the island of Australia behind, after a 2,638 mile trek from Tasmania up to Darwin.

We had started region 5 on 28th February, and finishing on 8th April means it took us a total of 40 days, averaging 65.95 miles per day as a team.

I managed to log the most miles for the team in this region with 421.77, putting me in 54th place for the region at time of finishing, and the team in 29th place with a little overrun (but this all changes as other teams and individuals finish).

We have now completed 5 regions (14,713 miles) in a total of 223 days, averaging just under 66 miles per day. The total 30,208 miles of the trip would take us 458 days at that rate, well within the 16 month cut-off for a silver buckle.

Craw – region 4 completed!

Team This is the way is off the frozen wastes of Antarctica and now trekking across Australia! This was the longest region of the circumpolar navigation (and ticking off one of the poles), but we finally completed the 3,296 miles of region 4 yesterday (a little bit over in fact as a few team members had some unlogged days that pushed us over the target).

We had started region 4 on 8th January, and finishing on 28th February means it took us a total of 52 days, averaging 63.38 miles per day as a team.

I managed to log the most miles for the team in this region with 544.79, putting me in 51st place for the region at time of finishing, and the team in 8th place due to the overrun (but this all changes as other teams and individuals finish).

We have now completed 4 regions (12,075 miles) in a total of 183 days, averaging just under 66 miles per day. The total 30,208 miles of the trip would take us 458 days at that rate, well within the 16 month cut-off for a silver buckle (though we did slow down and lose 7 days over this region – aptly due to snow).

CRAW – region 3 completed!

Team This is the way is headed for Antarctica! We completed the 3,173 miles of region 3, through Chile and Argentina yesterday, and are now headed for the longest region – a frozen trek across Antarctica (we seem to be having the weather for it).

We had started region 3 on 21st November, and finishing on 8th January means it took us a total of 49 days, averaging 64.75 miles per day as a team.

I managed to log the most miles for the team in this region with 490.3, putting me in 72nd place for the region at time of finishing, and the team in 48th place (but this all changes as other teams and individuals finish).

We have now completed 3 regions (8,779 miles) in a total of 131 days, averaging 67 miles per day. The total 30,208 miles of the trip would take us 451 days at that rate, well within the 16 month cut-off for a silver buckle.

CRAW – region 2 completed!

Team This is the way finally made it through Peru last night as I slept (having logged 8 miles in the morning). This completed the 3,094 miles of region 2. We started on 5th October, and finished on 20th November, taking a total of 47 days.

I managed to log 421.21 miles this region, second to Susan who rounded up to a very nice 500. At time of finishing that put the team 48th, and my personal position was 149th (though these all change as other teams complete the region).

We bagged ourselves the lovely trophies below, and I got to kick off region 3 in Chile this morning.

82 days in, and 5,606 miles down. That’s an average of just over 68 miles a day. The 30,208 total miles would take us 444 days at that rate. Perfect for a silver (16 months) buckle).

CRAW – region 1 completed!

Team This is the way arrived at Fort Sherman (to board the boat from the mouth of the Panama canal) on 5th October 2020. This completed region 1 of the circumpolar race around the world in a total of 35 days. A little slower than needed for the 12-month gold buckle, but a lot of the team members live in California and had a week to ten days of not being able to run due to the poor air quality from the forest fires.

I managed to complete 305.84 miles over the course of the region (finishing 293rd of 2003 runners), and got to see my teammates start on region 2 in Colombia on the same day we finished (my 8 miles for the day counted towards region 1). A small change in personnel with two runners dropping out having brought us home with their final 16 miles, but another two joining for the next 3,094 miles from Colombia to Peru.

Onwards and further South!

Screenshot of CRAW region 1

CRAW – week 1

The first week of CRAW (circumpolar race around the world) is over! A short week (that started on Tuesday), but as a team we have managed to log 486.74 miles (including my 8.003 this morning). This places us 19.38% of the way through region 1, just approaching the big left turn at Citrofrut Paso Largo (a fruit juice company) which will take us towards the coast again.

It all started with being sent your CRAW passport, along with an email confirming you’d been granted all of the necessary visas and filled in all of the required forms (which was a nice touch), as well as there being a downloadable race bib with your name and number.

The wizards at CRAW HQ have made a map where you can track where you are as a team, as well as for each individual.

You can track where I am here: https://runsignup.com/Race/Results/95983/IndividualResult/LBbk?resultSetId=212380#U45842034

The leading running team has already made it to Guatemala, logging 1,269.85 miles, which is awesome! Their least active runner has logged 70.70 miles, whilst their most active has logged 253.30! They clearly mean business, and it should mean that region 2 as to be opened up soon. In comparison they have run further than all but the top 6 multi-sport teams (the top team is already in Nicaragua).

Running around the world

London marathon 2020 was finally cancelled last week, so after training for it twice (up to around 8 weeks out each time) I find myself at a bit of a loose end, race-wise. I have a qualifying time for Boston 2021, but am not sure I want to commit myself to flying over then in a tin can for several hours with several hundred other people. Nor do I want to commit financially to flights and hotels when I might find myself suddenly requiring to undertake a quarantine period, or the race gets pushed again.

So, what to do? I stopped the training plan at a point where I was averaging in the high fifties for weekly mileage, so thought I would continue at that level this time around (when lockdown was announced I stuck with a 40-mile base, with no speedwork and no runs longer than 10 miles). The race situation is a bit fluid at the moment, so a race might suddenly open up with a few weeks’ notice (and equally could disappear in an instant). Instead of training for a specific distance I figured I would keep doing one intervals session a week, probably whatever has been set by the Single Malt Marathoners podcast, just to keep the legs sharpish.

I’ve also switched out tempo Thursday for the Thursday half, where I will run at least half marathon distance to keep the weekly mileage up. That should keep me pootling around Bristol on a variety of loops that can be adjusted if any local lockdowns with distance-from-home restrictions come into force (unlikely, but if this pandemic has taught us anything, then it’s that anything can happen).

Motivation can be hard to find without specific targets to train for, but serendipity landed something in my lap just yesterday. A fellow INKnBURN ambassador got in touch asking if I’d like to join a team for CRAW. A lot of googling followed to find out what this was, and after a bit I signed up (for at least region 1 with this team).

CRAW is the Circumpolar Race Around the World. A no-time limit race from Laz Lake (of Berkley Marathons and the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee). In this incarnation teams of up to 10 are logging mileage in a relay race around the world, cutting across the two poles.

As I understand it, one you complete each region (of which there are 12 total), you are then allowed to start the next. At this point, you can switch teams should you choose, and continue with new team mates. Rinse and repeat until the final team you are in completes region 12 when you will have run all around the world.

There are medals for completing each region, and if you complete region 12 within 12 months of the start you earn a gold buckle, if it takes 16 months then it’s a silver buckle. There is also a multi-sport option (biking, kayaking, has to be human-powered), which has a reduced time-limit for the buckles (and if you complete any region in a multi-sport team, you can only qualify for a multi-sport buckle).

It should be fun. I only know a couple of my teammates at the moment, but knowing that your team is relying on you to complete the region’s mileage (which is all recorded on the honour system) should provide that extra motivation to get out of the door. The courses are all plotted using actual roads, with our own routes carved across the South and North poles.

Region 1 is Latin America, and will pass through Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Panama for a total of 4,009km/2,491 miles. Assuming it is run along the same lines as GVRAT, then teams will be able to plot where they are along the route base on the distances logged.

Starts 1st September 2020 (the day after the cut-off for GVRAT).

nine pic collage

2018 goals – running

All of the books about achieving your goals (running or otherwise) say that formalising, writing down, and telling people about them make you much more likely to succeed. 2017 was a pretty good year, running-wise (and my nine most liked instagram photos were all running related). I set PBs at 10k (40:35), half marathon (90:19) and marathon (3:31:19) distances, and ran my fastest ever 5k (19:25), albeit not on an officially measured course.

I’m hoping aiming to make 2018 even better (it’s certainly going to be more expensive, with 3 overseas races but at time of writing these have all been paid for). I have, as all of the books recommend, set myself A, B and C goals and organised my training around these.

My A races:

  • 22nd April 2018 – London Marathon. I set a big PB in 2017 despite hot conditions and this year I am aiming even higher and training to go sub 3 hrs 20.
  • 16th September 2018 – Berlin Marathon. If London goes well (and even if it doesn’t, so long as I don’t injure myself in training) I am going to train and aim for a sub 3 hr 15 marathon, the championship time for London. In the past I have increased speed over the summer when taking in more rays, so expect this to be true again. Berlin is also notorious as a PB course unlike London with its crowded streets.

My B races:

  • 4th March 2018 – London Big Half Marathon. I didn’t quite manage to get my sub-90 last year, so I’m going to have one more go at the London Big Half as part of my London marathon prep. I am sure that there will be other half marathons scattered throughout the year (indeed one of them is one of my C races) but this will be the first targeted attempt at the sub-90.
  • 7th October 2018 – Chicago marathon. This comes just 3 weeks after Berlin so I won’t be racing it as such, but it is an Abbott World Marathon Major so just attempting to complete it marks it down as a B race. It will be great to see how the city has changed since I was last there in 2003 and if I come out of Berlin OK I think I might be able to manage around 4 hours (but really the aim is just to finish, as a victory lap for the year).

My C races:

  • 11th March 2018 – Lisbon Half Marathon. This is a week after the London Big Half, but was booked in beforehand and is a bit of a jolly with some other Bristol runners. Now that I have set the previous week’s half as a B race this will likely be more of a training run, but it will be my first overseas race.
  • The remaining Weston Prom 5 mile races. I should be able to keep these fairly competitive as marathon tempo runs (with warm ups and cool downs) within my marathon training, to help out with whichever club team I am on (I think it is ‘Bristol & West South Westerlies’).

I would also like to set new 10k and 5k PBs but have not factored them into my existing plans (I get a week or so off after London before starting training again for Berlin) so they will have to be as a consequence of my marathon training if they come rather than anything specifically tailored towards those distances. As such I have not booked any races of this length into my diary yet. I am sure more races will be added during the year (such as the Bristol & West 5k series and the GWR 10k series) but I won’t be adding any more A races, two marathons in a year is plenty to focus on.