Hi all,

    Before my ultra marathon running even got started it seems as though its coming to an endimage Various problems. I am off to have some MRI scans and various other bits done. Perhaps it will turn out ok and I can carry on. However, it may seem like a silly question. Are ultra marathon events open to walkers? I know I can easily tab whatever distance I want and this could be a genuine back up plan if its allowed?. If not does anybody know of any clubs or organisations that hold such events. Essentially I want to test myself and I want to do something pretty daft over long distances and if my body says it can't run then I shall walk at a decent pace instead.

Oh and I don't mean the type of walking like you see in the olympics. I mean boots on bergen on and off you go!

Thanks in advance


  • Extreme Energy events are open to all see here.  You can also look at the ldwa website which has a list of challenge events from marathon to 100 miles.
  • Thanks for that. I did look at ldwa website. But was not sure if it was competitive or whether its a stroll with mates if you get what I mean?
  • TV LDWA events are very mixed ability social events, you'll find everyone from sub 3 marathoners to sub 20 hundred milers to walkers in their eighties. Brilliant events on the whole and I whole heartedly recommend them
  • I have a friend who does LDWA events with his wife and dogs, stopping at every possible opportunity for a bite to eat, a scenic photo opportunity, a cup of tea, or a natter with the marshals. They're not particularly competitive and treat it more as a social outing. I think every event has a mixture of abilities and some people at the front who are very competitive, but they're in a minority.

    Sounds to me like you'd love the LDWA events actually!

  • I have never encountered any ultra, where it is stipulated that entrants must walk part of the event.  The only question is whether you can walk round within the cut off times. 

    Elite power walkers routinely take on ultra distance events.  For many years it was assumed that it was impossible to walk round the Lakeland Trail 100 within the cut off times, but the British Champion recently proved otherwise.  In the Thames Path 100 yesterday, one of my friends injured her knee 15 miles into the race, and power walked round the course in 25 hours. 

    I would submit that even within ultras that are conventionally only undertaken by runners, there are plenty of possibilities for you. 

  • Thanks guys, sounds quite promising. i have just dropped my local LDWA group an email and waiting to hear back from them. Thats what I thought Ben, the cut off times play a big part but its quite understadable why they do them.

    I understand the whole socail outing thing but I do have a competitive streak in meimage They got a 30miler this coming April near to me. I might book myself on it. I mean 8quid aint bad and see how I get on. But hopefully between now and then i'll have an idea whether running is going to be a possibility or not for me.

  • TheVicar, have a look at the Dukeries Ultra Home - Dukeries Events they have got a 30 mile walk as well as a 40 mile run .

  • Thanks for that. I wont be robbed by Robin Hood? thats the kinda thing im after image
  •  Hope everything turns out ok and you can run,will be doing the 40 miler at the Dukeries myself,so hope to see you there,
  • whilst the lakeland 100 is to tough for walkers in the cutoff.......the 50 is more generous and doable for strong walkers........in fact I'm sure one beat me the first time I did it as he was much faster than me on the uphills and towards the end my running was so slow it was down to a quick walk pace........

    you will just have to look at the cutoffs for each one
  • Its worth looking at the Saunders Mountain Marathon (summer in the lake district) There is a whole range of classes including one for walkers. Two years ago one team got disqualified for having run for a bit!!
    Most races described as ultras involve running and with everyone else dashing off would not be much fun. The one exception is as said before the LDWA events which are truly inclusive.
    Its also worth trying Orienteering which is more of a thinking sport than a running sport especially for novices . The best time for a runner to try orienteering is probably when they are injured (the slower the pace, the faster the course time as you won,t keep haring off in the wrong direction!)
    All the best Ian
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