How to run the London tube Lines – part 1

Posted: November 12, 2016 in coffee, London underground, running, running tube lines, ultra marathons, ultra running

As I mentioned recently I’m taking Allthemacchs in a different direction for a little while. I’m going to be posting about my running and in particular about my plan to run all the tube lines on the London Underground. tube-map

I’m not going to abandon writing about coffee bars, in fact my next post will be about the new branch of the fabulous Coffee Republic (here’s a previous post about the Finchley branch) that’s just opened in Muswell Hill.

But there will be more posts about running.

If like me you like to run and if like me you live in a big city (or a small city I guess; I’m thinking maybe Brighton? Bath?) then I hope I can share some tips for running the urban trails. Over the years I’ve run many organised races, ParkRuns, 10kms, marathons and even an ultramarathon, but recently I’ve been looking for something a little more… bespoke.

And to be honest, cheaper and with less people around. Call me a grouch but I really like running on my own.

The idea started a little while back when me and my good friend, Sticky decided to run the length of Broadway in New York City, which, it turned out is pretty much exactly a half marathon. I like the idea of combining running with sight seeing; you can stop off for a coffee or a taco or to watch some buskers or whatever. It all just seems like a more relaxed deal that the organised race thing. I’d been quite inspired by reading a couple of books by ultramarathon superman @DeanKarnazes who likes to do crazy shit like run all night long then order take out pizza to be delivered to wherever he happens to be when he hits mile twenty, so he’s got the fuel to run home again.

Exploring other cities seemed obvious, but what about my own backyard? Of course I’ve run around London for years, but tbh I usually stick to the same routes. The London Underground seemed like the perfect challenge ¹  .

Okay, maybe not perfect; a cursory glance at the tube map and a few minutes on Wikipedia revealed that some of these lines are really, really long. Ultra marathon distances. But, you know, that’s the nature of a challenge I guess; it should have some measure of er.. challenge in it.

I searched around and found very little in the way of help and advice. There were certainly a few people who’d done it, mostly raising fantastic amounts of money for charity, this guy, and these guys, but considering how many people run in London, I was surprised there was so little out there.

So now I’m doing it too².

Next post: It begins: The Victoria Line.

Anybody else had a go at running the London Underground?

Or have you got any other interesting running projects?

 ¹ I guess I should be absolutely clear here to avoid a misunderstanding, but I’m talking about running the tube lines above ground.

²Although not for charity. Huge respect for people that do; I have done so for marathons I’ve run in the past but I just find the whole business to be a massive pain in the arse. If you’re inspired by my endeavours, maybe just go and drop a fiver in some homeless dude’s hat or something.


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