Loving the trails again!

For a while after the marathon last July, and over the winter, I felt like I’d lost the love of running. Maybe as I didn’t have a goal? I think I need to have a purpose and something to strive for; although at times I do enjoy running for running’s sake, I’m definitely better when I’m focused.

Today I had to run 16 miles, my longest run in some time. It was scheduled to be a 6 mile warm up followed by 10 miles at marathon pace. I decided to break the rules!

Having run a ‘hard’ 15 miles last week I figured that counts as a marathon paced run. There’s also the challenge of figuring out what marathon pace actually is for Fort William. The undulating, multi-terrain course doesn’t lend itself to the calculators in the same way as a road run. Last year I trained to a notional road pace and did these MP runs on flat pavements figuring I’d get the benefits later in the year. This year I’m open to suggestion on what’s the best approach, today opting more to run by feel.

Setting off before 8 am, the plan being to catch the Metro social Sunday crew for coffee later, I headed from Hazlehead over to Countesswells. It was slightly chilly but the sun was out and I truly loved running today! I ran with a smile on my face, enjoying the freedom, the fresh air, and even the three loops of Kings Hill. I genuinely do believe that more daylight is making me feel much better on the whole.


It was one of those great days when everything comes together and a true feeling of flow is achieved. Having just tackled the final slope, I was on the way back towards the car park when I stumbled upon the Sunday gang. Timing couldn’t have been better!

A very enjoyable end to the run with lots of chat for the last few miles and even company up and down the reps lane to round off the miles! Perfect 👌

Marathon Spotlight – Clare Russell

Honoured to be invited to share my marathon journey on project345blog

Wishing James every success in his forthcoming marathon!


This #marathonspotlight is Clare Russell.  Clare is frequently found volunteering at the local Parkruns (You can sign up here to volunteer).  This read is fantastic and I really enjoyed the feeling of how much running is a passion for Clare.  Eight marathons (and one coming up) gives us a depth of knowledge on the distance and strategies.  I hope you enjoy this as much as I did pulling it together.

Marathons completed?

I’ve now completed eight marathons: Amsterdam (2008), Lochaber (2010), Edinburgh (2010 & 2011) Moray (2010), Paris & Highland Perthshire (2013), Fort William (2017)


PB Marathon time?

3:42:38 at Fort William


Favourite marathon and why?

Fort William! It had been on my radar for a couple of years as I love the Fort William area. However, the undulating nature of the course and the fact that it’s multi-terrain mean it’s not billed as a PB course. I had therefore…

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