Turning up the heat on Polhill Avenue to help runner Ian train like a Spartan


The University of Bedfordshire has turned up the heat within its environmental chamber to help an athlete train for a gruelling 153 mile race in Greece’s unforgiving temperatures.

Ian Hammett from Bedfordshire is due to take part in the Spartathlon on 27 and 28 September, a 153 mile race from Athens to Sparta in Greece, a distance that athletes must cover in 36 hours.

To help prepare for the conditions he will face during the race, Ian has been training in the environmental chamber at the University’s Human Performance Centre at the Bedford campus on Polhill Avenue.

“Using the Human Performance centre supervised by Dr Jeff Aldous and his team has been the best possible way to acclimate to the likely weather conditions that I will face in Greece,” said Ian, who represents the  British Spartathlon Team.

“They have taken me beyond my comfort zone and exposed me to conditions that it would otherwise be impossible to replicate unless I was in Greece itself and have ensured that they will leave me in the best condition possible before I fly to Athens to attempt to complete this epic race.

“Whilst there are hotter races, and more mountainous, it is the aggressive cut off times at each 5k checkpoint that truly test us to complete the course in under 36 hours.”

Ian Hammett
Ian Hammett acclimatising ahead of his race…

Dr Jeff Aldous from the School of Sport Science & Physical Activity said: “It’s a pleasure for us to be able to help Ian prepare for the Spartathlon and we wish him the best of luck.

“We are always pleased to welcome athletes into our sporting facilities – not only to help local athletes train for their events in the community, but to give our students first-hand experience applying the practical skills they have gained whilst at university.”

To find out more about the University’s Human Performance Centre, visit: https://www.beds.ac.uk/humanperformance/

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