Help for Heroes trains hopefuls for Arch to Arc Challenge

With six months to go until the infamous Enduroman triathlon that sends athletes from London’s Marble Arch to the Arc de Triomph in Paris, the charity Help for Heroes is putting together a team of wounded, injured and sick military personnel to take on the challenge.

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The Help for Heroes Recovery Centre at Tedworth House in Wiltshire hosted a training weekend for 30 servicemen and women last weekend, all hoping to be picked for the final team. Those that don’t make selection will be offered a spot on the support crew.

“The magnitude of the challenge and the training required to successfully prepare for the event was soon realised by many after a brief on what to expect over the next six months,” said Rob Cromey-Hawke, a former Captain with the Army in the Royal Engineers who was injured during his second tour of Afghanistan in 2012. 

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“For those of us with disabilities, the confidence it will give us if we complete something no one else has done before will be phenomenal. Help for Heroes make you believe the sky is the limit in your recovery and this challenge is just another example of how much belief they give us to complete something we never thought possible.”

The training programme will run for nine months as part of Help for Heroes’ extensive Sports Recovery programme, and the challenge itself will begin on Saturday 26th September 2015. Last weekend’s training session at Tedworth House saw a team of sports scientists from Salford University donate their time to come and carry out lactate threshold testing on watt bikes so accurate personal training plans could be developed for each athlete.

Other training sessions over the weekend included run training using heart rate zones, racing wheelchair technique sessions (as some of the athletes have never used a racing wheelchair), swimming sessions, a bike time trial and lectures on nutrition.

The Enduroman Arch to Arc challenge requires relay teams to run 87 miles from Marble Arch, London to the Dover coast, to swim across the Channel, and finish with an 181 mile bike from Calais to the Arc de Triomphe, Paris, and has never been attempted by a disabled team before. To read a blog by a previous completer head here.

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The next training session will be held on 28/29 March in Catterick, Yorkshire. Recruitment for the challenge is open until the end of March; if you are wounded, injured or sick, serving military personnel or a veteran, and would like to get involved please email mark.airey@helpforheroes.org.uk.

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