I absolutely couldn’t believe it when I received an email saying that I had been shortlisted for the Berghaus Trail Running Team. I had actually only entered on a whim as I genuinely had absolutely no expectation of getting shortlisted. But I did, so… yeah!!!
I was super lucky to be able get a lift up to the Lakes with Rebecca Dent, not only is she a wealth of knowledge about sports nutrition, but she is also the loveliest person ever (and a trail runner). And along with us was the cheeky chappy Barnaby.
After tackling the motorway we arrived at Helvellyn Youth Hostel (YHA) bright and early. Once registered and armed with our sticky name tags we all bundled into the conference room. We were individually called outside to have a portrait photo taken. With the wind behind me I have no doubt that mine will look similar to a ball of red candifloss with two eyes lurking within.
After photos, we then had the opportunity to hear all about Berghaus and their involvement with the team. We learned how they design their clothing and equipment around specific disciplines, we even had the chance to have a little play with some of their new products. Then the same with Torq, who gave us a really insightful talk about fuelling for long distance running, and gave us freebies!!! This was followed the amazing Steve Birkinshaw. He is one of the UK’s best ultra distance runners. The best thing that I learned from him is that you can be an amazing runner and still enjoy the odd pint in the pub after! Helene Whitaker was the final person we heard from. She was such a delight to listen to, so inspiring. She has completed the Dragons Back race, twice, and twenty years apart. She is truly an inspiration to me.
From listening to all of these speakers, the main tip that I went away with was that it’s really important that you refuel your body within 30minutes of completing your days run/exercise. It doesn’t matter what it is that you are putting in but you need to be getting some fuel in.
Sadly the day had to end at some point, but it ended on a high with a group run up the fells. We only had 45minutes to run so we didn’t go very far but it was a brilliant opportunity to chat with all the other entrants and to hear their individual stories. Thankfully, as you see from the photo, the sun came out so everybody was smiling. When we reached the top, a few crazy folk decided to pop into the lake for a paddle (looked a tad too chilly for my liking!). After cooling off we headed back down to the YHA. I was one of the last to get back. I just don’t know how people seem to gallop downhill so easily!
Back at the YHA, I sat down briefly and chatted with a few other runners, before saying goodbye. I also had a look through the new magazine ‘Like the Wind’, with stories from other incredible and inspiring runners its definitely worth a read. Unfortunately that was the end for me, Rebecca and Barnaby, and we slowly made our way back down the motorway to Manchester.
Thank you to everybody that put the day together and everybody that I met. I have come away from the day even more motivated and with a greater love for running.
x x x