Pirineosfit Jaca Trailweek – Day Two

Biescas round-trip: A ‘Walk in the Park’ …

IMG_20170704_145419_685How can you call day two of the Pirineosfit Jaca Trailweek a ‘Walk in the Park’?

Well luckily for three good reasons!

First of all I woke up feeling refreshed after yesterday’s run. Resting in the afternoon sun, foam-roll self-massage and a mountain of proteins and Ice-cream worked out quite well.

FB_IMG_1499196526859
Day Two – Again enjoying myself!

FB_IMG_1499196554553

 

Just to be clear, with a ‘Walk in the Park’ I do not mean the English Parkruns every Saturday morning at 0900: ‘just show up and run ‘only’ 5km’. I really like that set-up and that brings me to the second reason: the organisation needed to shorten the route again, just like yesterday to ‘only’ 25 kilometres and 1300 metres height gain, i.e. a ‘Walk in the Park’ when your whole mind is focused on running 41km and 2700m+.

Luckily this time they announced it at the start so it was no surprise at the end! I quickly left half of my TriSportPharma Energy bars and water behind, no need to carry more than needed!

Whilst most runners started relatively fast I decided to start at an ‘easy’ pace, warm up the legs and get into the running rhythm. The MudSweatTrails Black Diamond Trailpoles were ‘locked and loaded’ from the start and of great help whilst winding uphill along a MTB-trail. The legs felt good so I could maintain a nice pace and caught up with some of the earlier fast starters.

IMG-20170703-WA0004
Great pictures from Day One: Alpine country!

 

The MTB-trail must be a real challenge for cycling downhill, running uphill I really enjoyed (so if you want to do some ‘extreme MTB’ this is a good place to go to). And that is the third and final reason for the ‘Walk in the Park’, the trail went through forest, meadows and followed an easy ridge. Completely different from the Alpine environment yesterday.

After reaching the top half-way also IMG-20170703-WA0007the down hill part was along MTB-trails, sometimes crazy steep, through forest and some remote rocky parts.

 

 

All in all I had the feeling of running in a Forest Nature Park, or as the call it in the UK: ‘An Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’, and sure it was beautiful!

DSC_0029DSC_0030Just like yesterday the PirineosFIT2017 organisation offered a nice cold pasta at the finish.

During the run I already looked forward to it, mjam!! – with some salt, olive oil, cucumber and a ice-cold gazpacho, just great!

DSC_0032Tomorrow even more sun and a bit warmer again. However, at the moment I have no sunburn (yet), probably (or hopefully) because I follow the wise advice from my spouse Lonneke, ‘put sunscreen on in the morning before getting dressed’, combined with my comfortable Julbo sunglasses and Compressport Ultra-light Visor (disadvantage is that I need to put sunscreen on my head due to my short haircut 🙂 ).

All four of the ‘instant team’ FIT 4 FANTASTICOS ran well today, hopefully we will all finish again well tomorrow, which according to the organisation will not be ‘that easy’.

NOTE: The PirineosFIT2017 have live Facebook coverage every day, summary videos and amazing photos (do not expect anything else from the Extreme photo – it is really funny, they are great in hiding themselves and than suddenly – flash!), all worthwhile to take a look, who knows maybe we can make another instant team next year!)

But for now, sit back (on the bed), relax and recuperate …

CHEERS!

Pirineosfit Jaca Trailweek – Day One

Panticosa Round-trip: Enjoyed … but too short?

grafica-web-1What a great experience this first day of the Pirineosfit Jaca Trailweek brought. The day started fresh, with the start at 0800 in the shades of the mountains surrounding the small (ski) village Panticosa. Cheered by a few people sixty runners started the ‘Endurance’ six day trailrun, of which twenty choose to go for the marathon distance.

DSC_0013I started at a relaxed pace, warming up whilst winding uphill along a stream. I did not bother warming up before the start, it is a six days endurance so … no hurry, no worries!

Soon I left Panticosa behind and climbed steadily through meadows where cows, goats and (wild) horses were grazing, their bells cheering us on going up the hill.

The first 12km I really enjoyed the views, magnificent high mountains, still covered with some snow, the sun warming me up, great!

After the first top I wondered where we would go next …

… not that snow field and scree slope … you are kidding me … no really that’s where the markings were heading me …

DSC_0020I could have known because this was a mountain marathon in the Pyrenees! The MudSweatTrails Black Diamond Trailpoles really were of great use up hill and especially on the scree slope. Finally at the top I understood we had to go back down the same scree and snow slope … I am from the flat earth part of the world, called ‘The Netherlands’, so uphill is already a challenge but downhill even more with all the loose scree and boulders

… Stay Calm, Do not Panic and Carry On! …

… these thoughts brought me down safely.

What followed was a nice downhill winding path ending near a lake and a secluded forest track back to Panticosa.

31km on the Garmin, ten more to go … however? I hear the speaker in the village already and finish in 4.29 hours with 1900 meters elevation and an average of 8.34 minutes / kilometre. What happened? …

Later I understood that some markings were taken away by people and in order not to get all marathon runners confused and lost in the mountains they changed the track. All right, still five to go so who cares about 10 kilometres and and 440 meters less height. I certainly do not and enjoy the cold pasta salad at the finish.

DSC_0023I the car towards Panticosa we made up team: FIT 4 FANTASTICOS with Pedro Sanchez Bruno from Portugal, James Poole from the UK and Ana Trivino Ramos from Spain. Quit an international group of trailrunners. That is besides the running what I really enjoy, meeting all these other trailrunners with their own amazing stories of long ultra’s and other crazy stories!

 

 

I am already looking forward to Day Two, it is a real treat to be able run in this beautiful area .. I would like to thank the Pirineosfit organisation, my sponsors and my family (!) for allowing me to do this …

THANKS!!!

Now time to recover … shower, foam-roll massage, TriSportPharma RECUPRO for a ‘mountain’ of proteins, and …

Huge Ice-cream Time!

 

Ready or not … here I come …

Pirineosfit International Trail Festival, 1-8 July, Jaca, Spain

Six days, six mountain marathons, 234 km, 15.000 meters height

grafica-web-1Ready or not … I do not really know? Joining a six day multistage Pirineosfit trailrun in the Spanish Pyrenees is a new step in my trailrunning experience. I am used to run every day, and did a few longer multiday trailruns, but never six days, and never in the high mountains … we will see 🙂

At least I am mentally, physically and materially prepared … at least I think I am!

Mentally: When you ask me: “Do you want to come to Spain and run for six days?”, it is like asking me: “Do you want a big pack of Ben & Jerry’s Ice-cream”. I am a bit of an Ice-cream-aholic so the answer will be: “Yes!!!”. And I think I will treat my self with a nice, big ice-cream after every mountain marathon next week … good for moral … keep calm and carry on as they say here in England.

Physically: We are now half way the year and I ran 3080km these last six months, i.e. almost 17km per day. I think that must be enough to complete this challenge. If not … I could not really have done more kilometres, maybe different training but I like the way I run … enjoy … no fixed plan … we will see. The six days are called ‘Endurance’ and that is what I enjoy to do. And if all goes peer-shape I can change to a half marathon a day. Still a challenge but I will not be part of the final results … does that matter … physically no, mentally (see above) yes.

Materially: My (trail)run closet is almost bursting so there must be enough gear to get me over the mountains! Six days to test all kind of goodies, that is what I like!

DSC_0001Shoes: I will use these six days to test the new INOV-8 Trailroc 285. I posted my first experiences already on Facebook but this will be a great test!

For assurance I also pack my favourite INOV-8 Trail Talon 275 and Roclite 305.

DSC_0006Clothing: The weather forecast looks … warm! … 24 – 30 degrees Celsius … that means I can surely test my new Compressport railrunning outfit. I have used before during the Sacred Forests World Championship trailrunning in Italy and really enjoyed the compression for both the calves and upper legs. Also the rubber buttons on the short helped during the steep ascends, creating grip of you hands when you push your self upwards. I am struggling a bit with the shirt which has the tendency to wiggle itself up my waist although I am wearing now a larger size. Ventilation is great and I think I will need it.

DSC_0005Trailvest: Pending a bit on the amount of mandatory gear and water refreshment along the route I will use the lightweight (140 grams only) Compressport Trailrunvest. But just to make sure I will also take my well worn INOV-8 Race Ultra 5 with me which has just a little bit more space for clothing, drinks and energy.

Trailpoles: I was lucky enough to get a pair of Black Diamond Trailpoles from the MudSweatTrail Store just in time for the the Sacred Forests Trail. As ‘low lander’ I am not used to run with poles but during the almost 3000 meter height gain within 55km of trail I was very happy to use them, after some ‘gundrill training’ with them the weeks before.

DSC_0004Energy: Maybe the most important part of all. Make sure I keep taking in enough energy and fluids during and after the trails. The six days are called ‘Endurance’ for a reason. It is not about going fast, but making sure you recover quickly enough to enjoy the next day as you did the previous one. I think I have reasonable experience in this subject. I use a mixture of products, mainly of TrisportPharma which for me works well, especially with respect to not have any stomach issues when pushing your body to the limits.

Ready or not?

As I wrote myself on the opening page of my weblog, Trailrunning … I just love it …, I think I should add … and enjoy it! I will keep you posted.