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Digital Subscriptions > Men's Running > Mar-17 > BUST A GUT

BUST A GUT

Rick Pearson heads to the Gut Buster 10 to break a bad habit and enjoy a mulled wine

RACE REVIEW

In 2016, I became a bit of a walker. Having previously prided myself on my ability to “tough it out” in races, I found myself reduced to a walk as soon as the terrain took a turn for the vertical. Often it was only for a few brief strides. But it had become a habit, and it needed to stop.

So I was determined to make my final

race of the year, the Gut Buster, a return to form. Not so much a Gut Buster, if you will, as a rut-buster.

Now in its seventh year, the Gut Buster takes place on New Year’s Eve and offers distances of 10 miles and 10K. Starting and finishing at Butlers Lands Farm, Berkshire, it takes in muddy fields, undulating roads and even a ford. For those looking to get into calorie deficit before the New Year’s Eve partying commences, there are few better options.

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About Men's Running

When I first started at MR – a fresh-faced graduate with fully functioning knees – I ran to keep fit. Did I do it? Yes. Did I enjoy it? No. Fast-forward two years and things are a little different... 2016 saw me run my first marathon, my first ultra and – the natural progression – my first 24-hour track race. People talk of the running bug, but this was a full-scale pandemic. In the months that followed, though, I got lazy. The thought of running elicited a vacant stare, a memory of plodding round a 400m track at three in the morning, and the muttered words, “You weren’t there, man.” So, resolved to refind my running mojo in 2017, I signed up to a race, the Brixton 10K (p94), in the hope that it would spark me back to life. And, along with providing depressing confirmation of just how much slower I’ve got, it certainly did that; the post-race feeling reminding me just why I fell in love with running in the first place. For many, though, running’s true benefit lies not in racing but in the adventures it brings. In our lead feature this issue (p46), photographer James Carnegie leads us on a whistle-stop tour of Northern Ireland to prove that, with just a little planning, a day is all you need to run some of the finest routes the UK has to offer. You may not find me scrambling up the Mourne Mountains any time soon, but you will find me running again. Here’s to getting back on track in 2017.
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