M2L – Manchester to Liverpool Ultra

Registration, the evening before the event.

Friends and colleagues will know that I prefer Moor and Mountain running to that of Road. This course was flat and tarmac/gravel all the way, adhering to the Trans-Pennine Trail route all the way – the only ascent coming at bridges. The pace was fast from the start – I dropped into a pack that felt comfortable and didn’t let up for over 20 miles, apart from checkpoints. This is unknown for me. Mountain running varies your muscle movement, sharing it equally. Ground conditions vary – soft one minute, interesting the next. Often feet are wet for most of the 100 miles! To run, as yesterday, puts too much pressure on the same muscles, and the cut-off times – always tight on GBUltra events – mean you have to keep going. I suspect this is what caused my left knee to become painful when running, just over half way round. I was able to walk strongly but once I started to jog, it became painful.
I’ll stick to mountain and moor from now on!
The event was excellently managed. Great checkpoint staff and plenty of good snacks at each.

Final stats: 50.7 miles, 12:17 running time, 12:40 elapsed. 800ft ascent. My fastest 50 by 30 minutes. No blisters or other effects. The medal is 4 inches diameter and is nicely heavy.

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