The 15k4rod Ulwell Challenge was an idea to complete a 15,000 ft running challenge to help Rod and Ellen raise £15,000 for their mobility chair fund. His story and bio can be found on the crowdfunding page here.
The Ulwell stairs have been used as a regular location in session plans for my previous races such as UTMB in 2019. It's only 310 ft to the obelisk, however at an average of 25% gradient, delivers a punch and sharpens the descending skills when taken at pace.
Do you have a support team, or Is it solo self-supported?
I had the boot of my car all set up to be completely self-supported. 15 reps into it Rods wife Ellen turned up with a massive crew, which I wasn't aware of until they arrived. They set up a cake stall and all took part in doing some reps themselves, collecting money from passing walkers, runners and cyclists. Self-supported nutritionally, 100% supported motivationally.
What was your nutrition fuel plan?
Every 30-40 mins I took a Saltstick fast chew, and consistently sipping Spring energy electroride throughout the challenge - approx. 3 litres. I used Spring energy speednut gels every 2 hours. supplemented with 2 x GU energy chews with caffeine every 30-60 min. As part of the plan I stopped approximately every 45-60 mins (every 5 reps) by the car and eat 150-300 calories
This consisted of;
- Peanut butter sandwiches
- Nuzest protein shake
- Lizzis granola with almond chocolate milk
- Hot water to help digestion
- 2 x small cans of diet coke
- Ready salted crisps
- Ploughman’s sandwich
- San Pellegrino blood orange cans x 3.
And constantly pouring water over body as temps moved to 25-28 on the hill between 12-3pm.
How did it go?
It went bloody, well and everyone had a great day. The body had no issues, with each lap taking an average of 9 mins to complete, always descending fast and nimble. The Spring energy products pack a punch at 200+ calories, and they absorb incredibly fast and deliver. Mentally, as a coach, I am well versed with focusing on ticking off landmarks and keeping the pace achievable on the day. When completing such a challenge as this and last year the century4 sanctuary, rational processes are key to a successful happy day. I set out shells to take up from the bottom. see pics. I had to do 49 reps to get the vert.
Frankly I loved the challenge; the day was amazing with so much money raised in the middle of nowhere and Rod is one step closer to paying off the chair.
Madmule Fitness & Adventure Ltd