Petestack Blog

7 April 2010

Bonking on Rannoch Moor

Filed under: Running — admin @ 9:55 pm

To the non-runners among you, it’s not what you think! A runners’ bonk (aka hitting the wall) is basically grinding to a halt when you run out of fuel, as might happen when you’re nearly finished that afternoon double crossing of Rannoch Moor you set out to do without any lunch, in which case you probably deserve it…

So I’m on my second week of holiday and (freed by the forecast from imminent climbing or walking plans) chasing a 70 mile target for the week. Which starts well with 30 miles salvaged from the rain over Monday and Tuesday, and continues with this daft notion of breaking the back of it by running another 25 miles over the Moor from Kings House to Rannoch Station and back (which I might have saved for Thursday or Friday to give myself a rest and let the ground dry out a bit, but decided to chance on a fine-looking Wednesday afternoon). All well and good but for the 1:16pm start with just a banana eaten since breakfast, but I’m feeling strong at Rannoch (where I drink my bottle of water and eat my two cereal bars before turning for home) and most of the way back before hitting a bit of a wall with just two or three miles to go. And the reason? Not enough fuel, I guess, but I’m partially revived by thoughts of more liquid and another two bananas in the van and get there in the end. 4hrs 40mins for the 25 miles, which doesn’t sound that fast but really isn’t too bad at all when the central section of ‘path’ between the good tracks at either end is heavy going (tip… if you lose the path, as I did on the way out, make for the telegraph poles to locate it again). So that’s that, I did it and can afford to take the rest of the week a little easier now. Except that I’m now thinking of 80 miles, but can’t see another 25 in four days being that much harder than another 15!


  1. Hi Peter

    Sounds an interesting run! Better to ‘bonk’ on a training run than the whw race! I’m sure you’ll learn from it.

    BTW – read your comment on Stuart’s blog. It’s an interesting discussion – one that we’ve had before. I’m still undecided about my tactics for the Fling and whw – do I dare start quicker??

    I reckon we ought to have a special prize for our own whw competition! Any ideas?? Bragging rights is enough but it would be fun to have a Duggan/Kynaston challenge. I’ve already got a competition going with Sharon.


    Comment by John Kynaston — 8 April 2010 @ 9:05 am

  2. It wasn’t a bad bonk, John… but a bit ‘stop-start’ when I hadn’t stopped all afternoon apart from a lengthy shoe-emptying stop (struggling with my laces) on the way out and walk-round pit stop at Rannoch Station and should have been coasting home! So my average speeds for the last three whole miles (out of 25.14 overall) were 4.7mph (including a sit-down stop), 6.0mph and 5.4mph (same as my average for the whole run) but, since that bit’s basically all downhill on a good track and I’d gone up it at over 6mph on the way out, I really should have been maintaining a good 7 or 8mph back down.

    Re. the pacing thing, Stuart can say what he likes but the classic, attested strategy advocated by Noakes etc. is even pace (for which I read ‘effort’ on a varied course like the WHW). Now maybe you guys with quicker road speed have got more to play with (dunno because IMHO you should simply be scaling your effort accordingly), but it doesn’t sound efficient to me and I know I’ll just blow up and pay for it if I go out too fast. Whereas I’m equally convinced I can keep on eating up those hills the whole way (so watch me getting stronger as I go?) if I get it right!

    No ideas about a competition, but not into ‘bragging rights’… hope to get there before you, but prepared for anything and will be the first to congratulate you if you beat (or even thrash!) me. It’s a bit like last time (2007), when half of me said I could do it in about 22 hours, the other half said maybe not at all and the first half was just about right. This time the first half says 20, but the other half says wait and see! :-/

    Comment by admin — 8 April 2010 @ 10:37 am

  3. I am the queen of bonking! Not something I would say outwith running circles :-) You live and learn. Or in my case, I live and should learn.

    JK- keep a hold of that gauntlet. You’ve got the dance off with Sharon to deal with first :-)

    Comment by Debs — 9 April 2010 @ 3:15 pm

  4. @Debs…

    You can bonk, you can jive
    Having the time of your life


    Comment by admin — 9 April 2010 @ 3:50 pm

  5. […] cereal bars (both scoffed at Kings House) to keep me going. Which those who’ve read my Bonking on Rannoch Moor post might well question, leaving me with no real answer/defence except to point to interested […]

    Pingback by Tired run to Kings House « Petestack Blog — 25 April 2010 @ 10:24 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Blog powered by WordPress. Feedback to