Phil Chalmers Runs 100 Miles In Less Than 40 Hours!

Personal Fitness Trainers in Reading, Thatcham, Tadley, Wokingham, Fleet, Yateley, Sandhurst, Bracknell, Henley, Wallingford, Didcot, Newbury and Basingstoke. Personal Fitness Trainer Ryan Phillips provides one to one Personal Fitness Training, free fitness program, exercise program and workouts routines, free consultation, group fitness training in Reading, healthy eating, weight management and nutritional advice to help lose weight, tone up, get fit, build muscle, sports specific training in Reading, Tilehurst, Berkshire.

103.9 miles, 22,871 feet of ascent (& descent), 2 nights of navigation without sleep, long tracks of bogland & loose rocks and numerous streams to cross. All this, coupled with the task of self-navigation, carrying your own essential supplies and a time limit of 40 hours. This represents the challenge laid down by the Ultra Trail of the Lake District (UTLD), widely recognised as the toughest ultra trail race in the UK.

"Some fifteen months after “accidentally” completing my first ultra in the downlands of Berks&Oxon, I set off in the early evening of 23rd July in an attempt to join the elite group of runners to have completed a single-stage 100 mile event.

Training in the months preceding the event had been specific to the rugged terrain and steep hills expected. Multiple climbs of Beacon Hill in Hampshire (1 in 3 in places), treadmill interval training at 13degrees incline (& 12km/hr) and 18inch high step ups for up to 20 minutes at a time. In addition, there was a weekly long-distance run/trek along the Ridgeway, culminating in a self-supported overnight journey of 54 miles.

It was great to get the UTLD started, especially as the weather was ideal & the scenery breathtaking. The first night passed quickly and there were only a couple of unscheduled detours due to the difficulty of navigating in the dark. Checkpoints were positioned roughly every 2-3 hours to enable the competitors to take on some food & refill water containers. The rising of the sun gives everyone a boost and by midday the halfway point had arrived. However, despite the regular application of Vaseline on my feet and strategically positioned blister plasters, blistering was inevitable after climbing over jagged rocks and trudging through ankle-deep bogs. In addition, the severity of the inclines (in comparison to the Ridgeway) had resulted in tight muscles around my left ankle. With 50miles still to complete the prospect of finishing appeared distant, especially as the blistering had slowed down my pace considerably. It was only when I realised that many others in the field felt the same way, that hope was restored.

I teamed up with two other competitors and we vowed to finish the race together. We battled through the discomfort (and occasional downpour) and shared the navigational tasks as tiredness hit us hard when we went approached the second night. Sleep deprivation hit us in different ways. I recall momentarily visualising a lobster on the track in front of me only to be told it was a fallen branch! As the sun rose for the second time, we realised that the 40 hour cut-off was going to be tough to beat so we reduced our checkpoint stops to as short as 3 minutes.

After 39 hours and 31 minutes we crossed the finishing line, all of us completing our first ever 100 miler. An amazing adventure and an incredible experience.

If anyone out there is crazy enough to want to tackle an event similar to the UTLD (there is a 50-mile version of it) then contact me to find out how you can make a start. The UTLD has fulfilled one of my lifetime ambitions and was well worth the sacrifices over the last year and a half. I don’t consider myself to be a naturally-talented athlete – I achieved this all with a carefully-selected training plan and a dogged determination to succeed. Go on, achieve that dream!

Thanks for sharing my adventure."

Phil Chalmers, Personal Trainer - Phillips-Fit Personal Training

Phil Chalmers


ryanphillips – Tue, 2010 – 08 – 03 08:03