Ever wanted to run the Mull of Kintyre Half-Marathon
Buzz - Dispatches from the fitness world
Published 20/03/2014 | 02:30
You'll get more than a lovely early summer run if you choose to run The Mull of Kintyre Half-Marathon – you will get to see a part of Scotland that is steeped in history as a stopover for seafarers over the centuries.
Not every place has a song written about it either – especially not by somebody as well known as ex-Beatle Paul McCartney.
The Liverpudlian wrote the song with Denny Laine when he was in Wings as a tribute to a part of the world where he had set up home after buying High Park Farm back in 1966.
The song, with its bagpipes providing a haunting accompaniment, became a surprise No 1 Christmas hit in 1977, and became the first single to see more than two million discs in the UK.
With entertainment built around the half-marathon weekend, the event – which is also known as the MOKRUN – was given the honour of being crowned the UK's No 1 half-marathon by Runners World four years ago.
Like all good events, there is also a 10k run on the same day; both events have sold out for this year – doing so within days of the entry opening at the start of January. So plan ahead, and get ready to sign up in January 2015.
The course for the half-marathon is both flat and fast, with a downhill finish, which gives entrants the chance to post a PB or very fast time at this distance.
The race starts in the town itself, runs through the countryside and includes nearly a mile of running on the hard sandy Westport beach. The final mile of both the half-marathon and 10k is on a slight downward gradient into the town and through the main street, finishing on the esplanade.
The area is at the southwestern-most tip of the Kintyre peninsula in the south-west area of Scotland. Runners who get lonely for the Emerald Isle only have to look across the sea to catch sight of the Antrim coast.
How to get there
It is tougher than it looks. There are always cheap flights to Glasgow but then it is a four-hour and 250k drive on roads which will make you think you are back in rural Ireland.
Alternatively, there is a daily passenger ferry service from Ballycastle in Antrim to Campletown on the Kintyre peninsula in May.
MOKRUN, PO Box 9270, Campbeltown, Argyll, Scotland.
Tel: 0044 1586 551 033
Date: May 25, 2014
Start time: 10.30am
Number of places: 900
Like the Irish, the Scots have a way of making visitors welcome. . . they also like the craic.
Also like here, you can never trust the weather and May doesn't give any guarantees.
App of the week: Carrot Fit
Carrot Fit is a weight-loss app with an attitude, literally.
It is a rarity in the fitness app market as it has a comedic side to it, and generally use of this app will either leave you red in the face with laughter or absolutely furious.
The app boasts a simple yet effective interface, in which you'll be asked to choose from a selection of hilarious chubby avatars. You enter your weight daily and, based on your results, you will either receive a kind word of encouragement or a below-the-belt insult which is designed to motivate you.
On the surface, the app looks like a bit of a joke or a novelty but Carrot Fit feeds off basic human motivation and has, for many, been an effective tool.
iTouch, iPhone, iPad, €1.79