Colin's observations and musings on Dartmoor Highground



Dearly beloved Runners,

I’m not usually a post-race social media publisher, and this won’t be the usual “I just ran 50 miles” post, but hey I just ran 50 miles around Dartmoor which gave me lots of time to think, test kit, and just enjoy being in one of the many beautiful landscapes our country possesses.

So onto my thoughts:

Kit

Ronhill socks and calf compression: brilliant. No blisters despite river crossings and peat bogs and bog.

Tailwind Nutrition for fuel: coupled with water and some savouries at check points was plenty to see me through 11 hours of running.

Scott for tyres: The Scott Supertrac Ultra was my choice for this jaunt knowing that I needed grip, comfort, durability and cushioning/ protection for the harder stoney tracks when sore. They were superb. I’ve ran short distances in them up until now and I worried that they wouldn’t cope with muddy fell conditions, but they were awesome. Wet rock, grassy slopes and everything Dartmoor were no match for these and I didn’t slip or skid at all.

I wouldn’t recommend for short fast techy races as they are too cushioned and I prefer to feel the ground. However, for longer stuff when you definitely don’t want to feel every stone, these are ace. Well done the Scott guys.

Observations and muses

I was privileged in this to see the sun come up, see some stunning long range vistas of Dartmoor and across to Exmoor, and see the full range of emotions from fellow runners.

My social media feed is full of amazing pictures of great landscapes and I get the feeling often that we only get part of the experience. The only way to get the full value of these images, is to be there. A photo doesn’t smell, feel temperature, and perhaps doesn’t fully show emotion. What I’m essentially saying is don’t live your running life through other people’s adventures, get off your bum and go experience it yourself.

To that end I won’t be posting any photos of what I witnessed. You will have to go and see them in the flesh!

Other runners

Finally I must mention those runners who don’t win, have no chance of ever winning and in my opinion must have granite strength, resilience and cast iron motivation to complete such events.

They are often out twice as long, in a greater range of weather conditions, and often completing races in the dark.

They compete the run often to no fanfare, most people have left the finish.

Yet they complete. They don’t DNF, list excuses of why they might not complete, they don’t get sponsorship from top brands. Instead they train, buy their own kit, don’t have delusions of grandeur, or post achievements or non achievements, to gain more followers to massage their egos. They just do.

Without these rank and file runners, many events wouldn’t go ahead. No one could afford to put on a race for the first three finishers and make it viable. Remember that the next time you pick up the winner's trophy that the person in last place helped pay for it!

So show some well earned respect for every runner. The person in last place I would argue has worked as hard if not harder than the winner.

Thanks for reading.

Mind how you run.

Colin

#DartmoorHighground

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