Friday, November 16, 2018

Two very contrasted races: Trail des Glières and Trail de Nendaz

So this will be much ado about nothing – taking almost two months to write about my last two races – the Nendaz trail and the Glières trail – and pretty much skipping over them. Thing is, there’s not much to say about the former and I would not recommend the latter for anyone, like me, who thinks that too much technicality just kills the pleasure of trail running. I mean, it’s one thing to be working your downhill skills – and another to be scared of falling and slipping a disk or dislocating a shoulder just by walking; one thing to work your heart pump uphill and another to be on all hands and knees having to use a rope to get to the top of a mountain. And what was with the speed goats?! I mean, I was doing this race with my friend Anthony, his first ultra but certainly no stranger to endurance events, having finished two Ironman triathlons – and pretty quick too, with a finishing time of 11h17 and a sub-40mn 10k – and yet here we were not even half the race straggling in the last 10%... Needless to say, Anthony was none too pleased and I was very disappointed I had chosen this for his first trail run :-)

That said, if I hadn’t done the Nendaz trail a few weeks earlier, I might have begun to wonder if the time barriers and required speed at trail events weren’t getting a little to ridiculous. I mean, I might be getting a bit old, fat and slow – but still! Fortunately there was the 30k fun run Nendaz trail that I’d done a few weeks earlier with my longtime running companion Cyril where I was passing people uphill (a first!) and still felt I had something in reserve – and it was blissfully not-too-technical, with very runnable downhills on 4x4 tracks. A bit too “woody” (i.e. most of the race takes place below the tree line) but very scenic.

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