KIMM training diary

We are Mike (35) and Susie (31) … I’ve been doing mountain marathons since 1988 and have orienteered on-and-off during that time (more off than on). Susie is a MM-virgin but has got into running recently. I thought it would be fun (as well as a good test of our relationship) to do a KIMM together, the short-score being a good introduction. My previous best on the SS was somewhere round the 60th mark a few years back.

Susie, being a well-organised and dedicated person, got herself a personal trainer back in the summer (which, by the way, is cheaper than most gym memberships) and has been working on her fitness with real results. I’ve continued to cycle every day (8 miles). During that time we’ve tried to get out for long runs and orienteering events but various events have got in our way. Our first camping training on Dartmoor (close to mum1) was a complete wash-out (see photo) so we just did a wet run and then retired to the very comfy Rock Inn, Ilsington.

Our next supposed camping weekend on the Yorkshire moors (close to mum2) was curtailed when mum2’s dog was taken ill and we had to stay and give moral support!

1 week to go ….

Knees. Now I’ve never had a problem with my knees before but it seems now I’ve turned 35 they have just started crumbling beneath me. The last few runs have left me with very sore knees after about 8 miles, bearable but sore. So, I went to see a physio (yes, had to re-mortgage my house first) and have some exercises to do. Interestingly, he didn’t tell me not to do the event … but then again, I don’t think he fully understood what I was talking about. I guessed this when he suggested I could nip down to the local and get a bag of ice to ice my knees on the Saturday night, I just said ‘ Good idea!’ … all this explaining was costing money!

The kit assembling has gone well. We have practised-packed our sacks and are pleased (well, as pleased as you can be at the prospect of lugging all that gear round the hills) with the results. Susie’s new rucksack, though heavier than the standard Kimmsac, is comfortable for her and more importantly is pink and matches her top! We have decided that it will be worth the extra weight to take our little Canon Ixus for photos and video which we hope to include in this report next week.

Other new gear being tried this year is my new MSR Pocket Rocket (stove not a vibrator – Google Pocket Rocket and you’ll see what I mean). I’ve used it on field work for making impromptu brews and it’s so quick … bit noisy though. We’ve also upgraded from Petzyl ‘neck ache’ to Petzyl ‘so light I didn’t know I was wearing one’ which saves, oh, all of 6oz on total pack weight! Mind you, look after the oz’s and the pounds etc etc … which reminds me, how do you tell your partner that moisturiser is not an essential item for a mountain marathon?

1 day to go …

This time tomorrow night we’ll be finding our way into the valleys and heading for the event centre. We did think about staying elsewhere but have decided to stay at a hotel on Sunday night instead. All the kit is packed and I’ve checked the weather forecast one last time … doesn’t seem too bad now considering the awful weather in the south-west the last few days. I’m not averse to a bit of bad weather on a KIMM but don’t think Susie will ever do it again if it rains all weekend (well, she may not do it again regardless of rain).

taken from the official KIMM Reporting website

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