2017: the plan

After failing to get close to finishing in 2016, my big goal for 2017 is the Viking Way. I’m probably already in better shape than I was in 2016, after slowly ramping my milage up during the Autumn. However there’s still a lot of hard work to do. And it might turn out that even my best shot isn’t good enough. But I’d rather try and fail than not have the balls to try.

The other big race is the (“last annual”) Vol State 500k, a road run across the state of Tennessee. I’m probably more suited to this, but the heat will be a new challenge. I’m not sure about finishing goals yet. 6-7 days should be doable (on the grounds that if I can do 270 miles of peat bog in January with a 10kg rucksack in 6.5 days, I should be able to do 314 road miles in a similar time). But mainly this is going to be an adventure.

As a warm-up for the Viking Way I’ve entered the Endurance 24h track race in Helsinki at the end of February. This probably seems a bit silly. But all of my best 100+ mile runs have come 4-8 weeks after another 100 mile run. I’d have preferred a 100 mile trail race in the UK (more similar to the VW and less time/money). But I couldn’t find anything suitable, apart from the Arc of Attrition, which would have required too much time off work (and would probably also have been a bit too hard).

I’m pondering doing the 214k Chiltern Way Ultra too (mainly because not running over the August bank holiday weekend feels wrong). But I’ll probably wait and see how I feel after Vol State.

Here’s hoping this year goes better than 2016...