BRECA CONISTON SWIMRUN
The 2017 Breca Coniston winner and founder of Real Endurance Coaching, Dr. Luke Moseley, shares his knowledge of the Cumbrian course
The start can be a bit chaotic as it’s a very short 50m run, so take some time with your teammate before the off, get used to the cold water and talk through your pacing strategy, where you’ll enter the water and your navigation pointers.
The first four swims, and the runs that link them all, traverse Lake Coniston as you gradually head north. These early sections will expose any weaknesses in your transition so aim to be smooth rather than fast. Before you start to swim, identify the swim exit and make sure you’re both ready to go.
The serious business starts after the fourth swim, as you set out on the 9-mile run that takes you from Coniston Water to Lake Windermere. This section includes two big climbs and can be technical with tricky rocks and off-camber roots. It’s worth taking your time here, as a twisted ankle or fall can easily happen. There are two checkpoints on this section with gels and fluid so make sure you stay on top of your hydration.
Once you reach Windermere and dive in for the 900m swim from Bass How, you’ll have ticked off the hardest part of the race. The three Windermere swims and two runs keep to the western side of the Lake so navigation is easier, and you have time to fuel up ready for the last serious run section.
This last run is only 4 miles but it’s technical and there’s 200m of steep ascent to get you up and over the fells before you drop down to the penultimate swim in Rydal Water. This might also be a good time to use your tether, so the stronger runner can help the other up the climbs.
Save some energy for the final swim in Grasmere... it’s the coldest. Once you’re out, there’s just 1 mile of road running before the finish. Make sure you take time to enjoy the run-in with your partner – you’ve come a long way together! Next month: Coed y Brenin Off-Road Duathlon on 4 November