Graham Grewcock took part in the 2019 challenge (lots of his colleagues from the company Taylor Hobson – where has worked for 35 years – were also taking part in the Corporate Team Cup Competition) and as a keen runner, Graham was keen to push himself and to beat the previous course record of 2 hours 57 minutes. Graham shares his experience of running the event:
“In my spare time I like to compete in triathlons. (In 2018 I complete the Ironman triathlon in Wales with a time of 12:40.26). Work decided they wanted to do the Leicester 3 peaks challenge and with two teams already taking part they asked me if I would join them as they knew I like triathlons and running. So with us all booked on the challenge we started to raise money.
I looked at the route from previous years and thought I had better go and check it out so I knew where I was going. Myself and some friends went over a few nights and walked a bit of the route, each time covering about 3-4 miles. When I am running I don’t always have time to look at a map and keep stopping and starting so I needed to be sure of where to go.
It also meant I was able to check out the terrain to see what I was up against. It’s quite a tough route to run but I had already completed the Charnwood Hills race in a time of 1:56. This was a 14 mile run and the 3 peaks was 16 miles and a lot hillier, but the views from the top of Bardon Hill are outstanding.
I had already been doing some training as I train most days for my triathlons it just meant I needed to run a little further so that I was ready for the distance. I worked out my nutrition so I took this with me on the day so I didn’t have to stop at the food areas that Charity Link had put out and lose time.
Although it was forecast to rain I didn’t actually see much rain when we set off, but within half an hour there was a bit as I was running up Beacon Hill. Beacon Hill is part of the Bowline race so I knew it like the back of my hand and I got to the top of Beacon Hill, touched the Beacon and off on my way to Bardon Hill. This next bit I only knew from walking it previously with friends. Some places it is quite narrow so navigating through these areas can be quite difficult watching where your feet are landing. I got to Bardon Hill and ran up to the top and touched the Beacon. I stood on the Beacon where I took a photo to prove I got there for my work colleagues. I have a GPS watch so it was recording my route that I took so this could show that I had run the complete route.
The view from Bardon Hill was outstanding and again really clear. You could see for miles but I didn’t have a great deal of time to take it all in as I set off back down the hill towards Markfield.This was quite a nice bit of the route as you run by a quarry. I then ran through the village of Markfield and into a wooded area that runs alongside the A50 and at the end it goes into Johns Lee Wood.At this point I was feeling ok but I had to take on my last bit of nutrition as I could just begin to feel the effort of the hard work I had put in. This soon kicked in and gave me a new lease of life and I was back up to speed again.
I entered the village of Newtown Linford which is nearly back home so off down and headed into Bradgate Park. This bit was quite tough as it is the last part of the route all the way up to Old John. I have to admit I had to walk up that bit of the hill to the monument just before Old John as my legs just would not run up at that point. Once I got to top I then ran up to Old John and around the Old John building and back down the hill to the finish line. I was first home and received a bottle of bubbly and a certificate. It is a really well organised event and a good challenge.
I went home to get changed and cleaned up so that I would not get cold. I needed some food so my wife and I went for lunch. After, I left the pub and walked to where I knew the team would be. I met them as they were heading towards Newtown Linford and we all walked into Bradgate Park and back to the finish line where we all received our medals and had photos taken.”