The Wrekin from Brown Clee Hill

The Wrekin from Brown Clee Hill

One of the problems with training for 32 in 72 is the lack of hills in Wolverhampton. Walking the actual distances I’ll be tackling (anything from 30 to 36 miles per day) isn’t a major concern. I regularly run 13-16 miles and walking twice the distance isn’t too demanding in terms of the amount of energy required, although it certainly has a cumulative effect on joints and feet. However, 32 in 72 is as much about altitude as it is distance over the ground. Add 12-13,000ft of ascent to the equation and the same 30 mile walk becomes a very different beast indeed. My body has to be able to power me up (and down) the UK’s biggest mountains for 12-16 hours at a stretch. For three consecutive days. And with the bare minimum of breaks. Like it or not, long-distance runs on the flat won’t cut the mustard.

So, from April onwards I’ll be changing my training routine to meet the demands of 32 in 72.  Monday 1st April, for example, will see me taking on a punishing 18 mile run up and down the hills of Cannock Chase. To make things more interesting I’ve stipulated a stop every mile to perform 20 stomach crunches or press-ups or burpees. Needless to say, my Italian running partner was absolutely ecstatic to hear about this requirement. Similarly, runs around and to the top of one of Shropshire’s highest hills (The Wrekin, 1376ft) will soon become a regular addition to my schedule. In between all this I’ll be undertaking practice walks to acclimatise my body to three days of unrelenting punishment. The first of these will be a blister-inducing 70-mile circuit of Shropshire’s highest hills, which you can read more about in my other blog. I’ll be dreaming up more (and more amusing) ways to punish myself as the event itself draws closer.

If anyone has any imaginative and suitably gruelling suggestions then I’m all ears!

View from The Wrekin

View from The Wrekin

Brown Clee Hill from Abdon Burf

Brown Clee Hill from Abdon Burf

Cannock Chase

Cannock Chase – Sherbrook Valley from Anson’s Bank


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