Spartan blog

Anglesey CTS Ultra Jan 2014 "A bit damp"


Published by Nick Wishart on 19/01/14

You learn a lot about yourself when you think you have nothing left to give and it is indeed true that there is always a little bit more to be squeezed out than you thought possible. I went into this event on the back of 5 days watching The Spine Race, with a set of remarkable athletes, including Charlie Sharpe, displaying extreme levels of staying power to complete 268 miles of the Pennine Way and that single thought is what dragged me over this particular finishing line.

Gritstone Grind: the power of the phalanx


Published by Paul Chrisp on 13/09/13

The phalanx was a formidable formation of infantry in ancient Greece, traditionally associated with Sparta - would it work for a formidable formation of modern day Spartans taking on the Gritstone Grind?

Ultra Marshalling an Ultra Marathon: Lakeland 100


Published by Matt Boot on 09/08/13

Marshalling a race always seemed a thankless task, but then I've only ever done shorter races, up to half marathon distance, until just recently. Standing around, wearing a high viz vest, saying well done, keep going has never seemed fun. Then I was persuaded last year to marshal the Lakeland 100 mile race, as Spartan Steve Mee was entering, Spartans Dave Douglas and Martin Clayton were running the Lakeland 50 mile race, and it was a way to show support. As a result, I got a free place for this year's race, and because my superhero alter-ego is Captain Sensible, I marshalled again. Having done this twice now, the whole thing still brings up more questions than it does answers.

UTLD 50: Coping in the absence of a Plan B


Published by Nick Wishart on 02/08/13

I am sat in a comfy chair at Mardale, cup of tea in hand, trying to focus my eyes, stand up and face the climb up Gatesgarth Pass. It wasn’t meant to be like this, with the taste of vomit still clinging to my throat. I expected to breeze in, share a few happy words with the Spartan Army and fill the bottles before marching on to Kentmere.

The weekend so far had been fantastic. Camped in a field with around a 1000 like minded  ultra nutters gave me a buzz and the air of anticipation was heightened after cheering off the 100 runners.

Confidence is currency!


Published by Paul Chrisp on 31/07/13

I'd hoped to do the L50 in 2012, so when the chance came round in 2013 I grabbed it and made sure I was as ready as I could be. If confidence was currency, I wanted to be feeling minted!

SST 2013: Headgear can be hazardous to your health


Published by Nick Wishart on 16/05/13

I am lying on my back on the forest floor. All that is missing is a circle of tweeting birds spinning above my head like a Loony Tunes cartoon. As I get back onto my feet, I look behind me for the first time in 5 hours, hoping not to see approaching hordes of runners, ready to speed past me so close to the finish.

The Sandstone Trail Challenge: A Tale of Achievement and Discovery


Published by Stephen Roberts on 16/05/13

The tale of how I went from hating short 1.9 mile runs in school to willingly running 33 miles along the Sandstone Trail

In It To Win It! Part 2


Published by Dave Douglas on 15/05/13

In It To Win It- Part 2

Before this day the longest distance I had ever run was only about 12 miles. I'm not sure what clicks inside me to make me do daft things but there must be some chemical in the brain that removes all the doubt no matter what the circumstances are and just lets you get on with it. I knew without a doubt that I would finish The Sandstone Trail that day regardless of what was thrown in front of me.

The Three Peaks Race: Unfinished Business


Published by Nick Wishart on 06/05/13

Last year this event was one of my identified A races for the year. Me, Steve, Andy and Jason set off from the field in Horton, expecting a challenging but great day over the Three Peaks of PenyGhent, Whernside and Ingleborough. Unfortunately, a little over 40 minutes later, my race ended prematurely, as just after dibbing in at the first summit, I turned my ankle badly on the descent. I was devastated to DNF, but even after a trial hobble in an effort to carry on, it was clear my day was over.

For a while last year, I actually considered adding a warning sign to myself:

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