Charlie's Big Challenge: 60-mile weekend runs in store before training starts to taper

Presenter pushing herself to help Women's Aid end domestic violence...

By Charlie Webster - @CharlieCW.   Last Updated: 04/01/14 3:12pm

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I've been so busy training, planning and organising the challenge I am about to take on in less than three weeks I was almost wondering when I would start to feel nervous or apprehensive. 'Now' is the answer, but in my sleep.

For the past week I've been waking up in the middle of the night talking to myself about my challenge and what needs to be done and who I need to contact, actually while I'm asleep!

This is not good as I then can't get back to sleep and proper rest is essential with the training and given what I am about to take on. Plus nobody is listening to me in the middle of the night!

Big weekend

So where am I at? Last weekend I did 29 miles - my longest run yet - after an ice bath, big feed and hot bath, in that order.

I went off to Sky Sports News for a 10pm on-air start after very little sleep. I then set off in the morning for a 17 miler.

This weekend is the big one before I start to taper, which is pretty funny as my taper is still running 25 miles in one of the sessions. So this is my big weekend: a 36-40 miler straight (with the occasional toilet stop); this is where pubs come in very handy when you're not drinking alcohol!

Someone joked that I should write the best pub toilets for long runs' handbook. The 36-40 miler is on Saturday and on Sunday I will follow this up with a 20+ mile run. I know it is ridiculous. I can't even think too much about what I'm about to do otherwise I start getting agitated and fidgety and my jaw starts to grind. That's one of the weird little things I do when I'm stressed.

As you can see from the video at the top of this page, you have to eat whilst you're on these long runs. This isn't easy! I have been experimenting with all sorts of different foods, the latest being pork scratchings! I wouldn't recommend this for people doing a 10k but for anybody training long distance it is a great source of quick calories and they're so easy to eat when you're running and quite amusing.


"You have to eat whilst you're on these long runs. This isn't easy! I have been experimenting with all sorts of different foods, the latest being pork scratchings!"
Charlie Webster

A lot of people have been asking about how my body is coping and how I am keeping injury-free. Well, I do have a chronic injury which involves hypermobility.

But I've come a long way and it helps to put things into context - both for me and anybody with ability but a shortage of faith and belief.

Just six months ago I really struggled with pain after a 5km run and afterwards had to spend over two hours with a physio to try and release my nerve pain and put the ribs that had dislodged due to my chronic pelvis condition back in place. Now I'm running ultra-distances.

Stability, strength and conditioning is the key to preventing injury. You have to prepare your body to run. I have done hours and hours this year of stability and strength work around the lower core and bum muscles which are the stabilisers for the pelvis. This is central to all movement, so if that is weak then you are going to overuse other parts of the body and joints to run.

So come on join me! I'm going everywhere (well, nearly) so you have no excuse to come down to the nearest club where you live or show your support. You can run in or out of the stadium with me or further if you like. It will help you with this New Year fitness craze that always happens around this time of year and it will make you smile (my banter isn't too bad!).

Best of all, though, you'll be helping me get through and supporting a good cause.

Take a look at the route I am running on

You can find out more about Charlie's Big Challenge here

You can follow Charlie's progress on Twitter at @CharlieCW.

To see more photos of Charlie preparing for her Challenge, check out our gallery here.

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