Tuesday, March 2, 2021

TransGranCanaria 2021 - The Hattrick

     Hello everyone! I will switch to English due to my recent international fame :) No, not really. I just have many friends, from some of my adventures, that will, probably, like to read this as well.

    When I last added some thoughts here I said I will never return to Gran Canaria for this race and I guess that is why they say never say never. I decided to return in 2021, after skipping a year, and try , again, to somehow finish this monster decently. The race course is changed every year and I know the time on each year cannot be compared to another year(s) but still. I wanted to feel like I had a great race. After 2 tried, finishing in a mediocre time and suffering more than I should have, I was stubborn enough to try again.

    Everything related to these 150+ mile races I did so far I executed poorly. I have to admit Frozen Peaks went by far the most ok of them all and I was really pleased with finishing 5th but still.

List of races I finished: PTL (190 miles with 25.000m ascent/descent, Tor des Geants 220 Miles with 27.000m ascent/descent, Frozen Peaks 190 Miles with 13.000m ascent/descent and TransGranCanaria 18/19 which is about 265k with 13.000m ascent) 

Coming back to the race I decided to register when Jean told me he is coming back as well. He had to DNF in 2019 due to severe issues with his feet (blistered beyond recognition) and had to stop at km 200. I was so sorry for him. I know blisters are, usually, genetic. There are people that have them - no matter what they do - and people, like me, that never had one :)

    I really enjoyed doing the race together in 2018 and I gained a good friend that joined me for a good part of Tor des Geants as well. We were together through a lot and, because of that, we really bonded and have a special friendship.

 I think the 3 months training block went well. I did all of the training with only some minor switched due to health issues I had in the winter months. Thanks Sandi and Sage! Always patient on my usual hiatuses of days at a time :)

Due to the COVID19 situation we had to wait until about 2 weeks before the race to know 100% if the race is a go or not. Travelling in the COVID times is also not easy with RT/PCR tests required by airlines and most likely quartine when I will get back home. But still. I really wanted a 'vacation'. A one week hike in which I can relax and find myself. I know it sounds crazy but this is the way I am looking at these races. Reality is that they are the opposite but you will see that during the next paragraphs when I will try to remember the days and nights that followed after the start.

    Race was scheduled to start on Wednesday the 24th of February at 9:30 so I decided to arrive a few days before. Heat acclimation is quite important. I know from previous years that I was dizzy for a couple of day (jetlag or heat) so I landed on the 20th of February and relaxed for 3 days before the race started. Cut the caffeine about 3 weeks before the start and it really made a difference as I am quite sensitive to it. I also noticed that I slept better after so I think I will drop it indefinitely.

 A week before the race, when they published the final track, I noticed that we will start on a different island. Well that is new! I was quite happy with this as I knew that the Tenerife island was way greener and I like that more than the rocky terrain in Gran Canaria. The bad part was that it meant starting with a night of just a few hours of sleep because we will meet in Maspalomas at 2:45 AM, get with a bus to Agaete, get the Fred Olsen Express boat for 80 minutes, take another bus for about an hour to the village where the start was taking place and walk another 3km with 400 ascent to the actual start point that was on the edge of the Tenerife coast. That was a mouthfull :) If that was not enough I was woken up at 9PM by some neighbors that were partying so I had quite a bad sleep of just 4-5 hours. I managed to take some short naps on the buses and boat but it was not great. I also had this lack of motivation and a premonition that it will not go well. I did not believe in stuff like this but It was this unfamiliar feeling I had and it felt strange.

    Anyway, after all the travelling we started the race and everyone was ecstatic. I was getting passed by everyone but I always start slow and am very cautions. I know that you are supposed to feel greeat at the start otherwise you wont be there :). I also know that we have 3 to 4 days of hikining/running left. No way I am burning this early. Due to the ferry we had to take back we had to strategize a bit because there were only 3 ferries available: 14, 18 and 20. There was a tentative 16, which I was looking at, but got dropped 2 days before the race. The course had 30k with 1800 ascent and getting to the 2PM ferry would mean I should push too hard...

So I took it easy and really enjoy the course. The weather was perfect - cloudy with about 20C outside - so I decided to get to the ferry about 1h 1/2 before 6 so I can rest and eat something so I did. Got there at 17, ate some machine sandwiches (the one that last forever :) ), and got on the boat in time. I planned to sleep on the boat but it was too early and it was way too loud to do it. I just relaxed and ate again as we received food from the organizer. We were back to Agaete in what it seemed no-time. The boat is pretty fast going 70km/h. I put my backpack on and got ready for what will be the first real stretch of the race with 44km with 3000m ascent during the night. As soon as the boat opened its doors we started running slowly. I wanted to try to run the flat parts and descents and on this first stretch there were plenty of runnable areas. The bad think is that when running with 7-8kg of gear/food on your back the physics of it change a lot. Going too fast, especially downhill, will reduce your quads to a bunch of gummy bears early in the race and will suffer a lot later on. So I took it with a grain of salt and easily (really easily) and with a more than enough cadence started to run. It turned out that this part will be quite easy with not a lot of technical terrain but with its share of climbs. I felt great so the first 30k went on quite fast. I usually feel better at night due to the optimal temperature and to the fact that you usually see the track better. Well not here as we need to follow the route on the GPS and it is quite windy and have to look at the device quite often. When I was about 20k from Terror, the next base, I realized that I made the same mistake I always do: not take enough food for the first stretch. I always think that I will not eat so much but it turns out I do and here I am 20k with about 1000 ascent left and only 2 gels left.

    I take one and hope that it will be enough but when about 10k were left I started feeling a bit dizzy and my stomach was doing these strange noises so I had to take the second as well. At this point I was looking for food everywhere and ate some lemons out of a tree on the side of the road. I know. No calorie intake. But it worked psychically as it seemed it did something. 

    Right when I reached Terror I saw Jean so we grouped and decided to try to sleep for 1h here as we were quite tired (75k with about 5000m ascent). Sleeping during these races is the hardest task for me as I am a light sleeper. It takes me half an hour to manage to get to sleep and I waken up by the lightest sound so I always use earbuds that isolate the external sounds as much as possible. We ate quickly and asked for a bed but we were quickly welcomed by some mattresses on the floor with a strange typhon thing that we were supposed to put on them. This was due to covid. Also no blankets and not pillows. Great! The room was super cold and all my clothes were soaked as I ran 75k in them so I could not sleep. My mind was racing and everyone around me was either snoring or farting, people were coming in and out. I was watching people go in, lay down and snore in the next 20 seconds. Amazing...

So, after and hour or so we left. Jean slept for about an hour so he felt fresh. I did not but felt pretty good as it was still early in the race. The next stretch, Terror to Valsequillo, was the shortes of the race with 38km and about 2000m ascent. We started on a cloudy morning at 8 AM and were going strong. Lots of runnable parts but on the first part. After about 1 hour we hit some technical trails and slowed down considerably. Stopped at a small village bar and ate some sandwiches with no idea what was in them but they tasted amazing. Went on a had a long stretch of up and down asphalt which we tried to slowly run. People were looking strangely at us but we received some bard from a pharmacy lady and they were quite good. It was raining on and off but just a drizzle mostly so no need to panic (yet...).

We started climbing to Caldera de Bandana, a volcano that looked breathtaking. At this point it started to rain and the wind was quite strong. We still though that is just a short drizzle and be stubborn enough to not stop and put our rain gear on.

When we reached the top it was so windy we could barely walk. We quick tried to descent and at this point it was raining cats and dogs. We finally put the rain gear on and slowly advanced as we could not see properly due to the fog/rain in front of us. What followed was quite technical and long and the strong rain and wind did not helped at all. We reached Valsequillo just before sunset making this stretch way harder that it should have been (we spend almost 12 hours on it).

We were soaking wet and we could not wait to eat some warm food and try to sleep as we knew the next stretch was quite hard with some ravines and river beds where the GPS reception was almost non-existent. Valsequillo to Terror ws a 45km with 3000m ascent stretch but here these stats are irelevant. Its not the distance or elevation. Its the terrain. The terrain is comprised of rocks and more rocks. Its like someone planted rocks on purpose. Everywhere. And they are so hard that they cut anything: soles, feet, hands and anything that stands in their way.  A hard thing on these islands is the way the climbs and descents are because of the small distances and condensed relief. Climbs are never more that 7-800m which compared to Europes Alps its a short warmup but they are short (30-40%) and the descents are killer as they are through a minefield of rocks of all shapes and sizes with, of course, the same percent of declination.

Here, in Valsequillo, is where I managed to sleep for one hour. The conditions were great (my own bed :) ) and the room was quiet so I napped like a baby. My blouse somehow dried in that hour (they had a dryer) so thinks looked great. We left the checkpoint at about 10PM looking good and forward to what would be a quite difficult 45k with 3000 ascent (again!) to Santa Lucia. I knew part of this stretch from previous years. Due to the rain that took place in most of the day the terrain was muddy which was a first for me here. Its usually dry and hot even during the night. We went down into a river bed and moved quite fast to what will be a deep ravine full of bambusses, fallen trees, climbing plants and not full of GPS signal. This was making navigation at least a challenge. This race does not go on marked trails and it is not marked at all. I forgot to mention this as it seemed so natural. You often have to go through bushes, prone so you can pass fallen trees, cactuses or aloe vera. My legs are usually a mess after this one: bruised and scratched. This part of the race was really really hard. The lack of sleep was getting to us as it already was our second night on the course, and we started to get into zombie mode for hours at a time. If that was not enough at some point a extremely cold wind started. It was so cold I could not feel my hands so I was getting my hands out to navigate once every few minutes. The fact we were still wet from the 2 days of raining did not helped at all. I put everything I had on me: 2 blouses, 2 pairs of trousers, the jacket, the rain poncho, the wet gloves. Was still cold as the wind was so strong we almost could not stand on our feet. We found an abandoned garage on the side of the road and decided to go inside for some time until (maybe) the wind will stop for a bit and will allow us to continue. Getting inside we noticed there was already a party there as another 4 people had the same ideea as us :)

So here we are, during COVID times, 6 people stuck in maybe 4 square meters , 4 on the ground directly and 2 on old chairs. There was no door so it was not great. We waited for about an hour (maybe) and we tried to sleep but it was too cold and we were too tired so we left. The wind was the same as before. We hurried on the next climb to get warm again and during the next descent to Santa Lucia the wind was even stronger and it started to rain again. It was so cold that we ran because we were cold and afraid as the wind was pushing us in all directions. I started having some kind of hallucinations because at this point I was towards the second night on that hour of sleep. I was quite surprised as it never happened to me before. I was looking down at my feet so I will not fell in the rock field and I was seeing all these common objects that were comprised of the rocks: famous people, objects, cars. I could realize it was happening and I was 100% convinced that these were the shapes there and was proud I could fit the rocks and plants together so I can form them in my mind :) Interesting experience to say at least.

    We managed to get down enough so the wind was not so strong anymore and the rain stopped. The sun was just rising so we decided to cut the zombie walk short and try to nap for 5 minutes in the bushed. I already know that this fools my brain and it gives me 6 to 8 hours of awake time.So we did. I managed to get asleep instantly as it was quiet and not so cold anymore. Woke up and felt good. Got a Roctane as I already started to get into caffeine since the previous night. 

We were at km 138 and there was a huge climb coming up:

I was feeling strong and I climbed quite good. I looked back and Jean was slow. I waited for him but then decided to take advantage of the good time I had and pushed further. The wind was still there but it was sunny so we did not feel it so badly as during the night. Next stretch was on a side of a mountain with no trail at all and a few hundred feet of falling if you stepped the wrong way. Great. If that was not enough it was full of small bushes that were blocking 'the path' and making it even more difficult to pass. I moved like a snail as I was tired and taking a step wrong will mean a bad thing. I finally got to Santa Lucia but was super tired again. It was afternoon (3 or 4 PM) and it was chilly outside. Km 160 here so 2 more marathons and we were done with this monster. We had decent food here so I ate as much as I could and tried to sleep for an hour but got about 10 minutes out of it. I was so tired that I could not go to sleep. Also caffeine did not help at all. My heart was racing and my mind was bombarded by all the thoughts about what is coming next and the fact that we still had 80k left was not helping. Woke up, got some water and waited for Jean but, after checking with the staff I realized he wanted to sleep more. It was chilly outside and I could not wait so I decided to ask another team if I could join them. Found 2 guys that said yes and told them I will follow them in 20 seconds as I needed to get an extra blouse from the drop bag.
    I got the blouse and made my way out but figures they left in a hurry and I could not see them in the next few km which were an up/down part through some villages. The next climb was a 2.5km with 790m ascent which was pretty steep and technical. Sun was setting down and I realized that I was more thirsty then I should have been regretting that I did not drank 1L of water when leaving Santa Lucia. I knew the next stretch was long and quite difficult, passing Roque Nublo, so I was preserving water as much as possible taking short sips from time to time.
    It was not long before I catched the guys and joined them. We got to the top of the climb and it started to become windy again. We stopped to dress and by the time we were finished rain started again. The next part was a 'flat' plateau at about 1800-1900m altitude. At least that is how it seemed on the profile. The reality was different. We were walking on this ridge that was exposed and the ground was super slippery due to the heavy rains. One of the guys I was with even fell and broke one of his poles in the process. Not the best thing to happen on a race like this as poles are super important - especially on the super-technical descents. After about 1km phones started to ring one by one but no one seemed to mind them. At some point someone stopped and answer but I carried on ahead as I was feeling good and I knew that If I stopped I was gonna get cold again. After about 5 minutes I was looking over my shoulder but there was nobody coming. This seemed strange. I slowed down a bit and heard people yelling after me. I thought they were asking if the route was ok and I confirmed. By the way: no one spoke English so it was more or less an universal hiking/runnign language between us. My Spanish is a bit rusty, too :)
I kept going but they were still yelling and I saw one of the guy`s light and he was waving and screaming. Ok. I turned back and found out that the oragnization was calling (doh!). It made sense as there was no one crazy enough to call everyone for minutes at the time but due to being so tired we did not realize it back then. I thanked them for insisting and returned to them. I understood we needed to climp to the top of the mountaint where there was a road and an organization team will pick us up with the cars and move us around until Parque Roque Nublo -  basically around this 5-7km area that was too risky to do in the current situation. It was very cold outside and it was still raining. We saw the headlights of the cars and climbed to meet them. They told us we have to wait as we were 5 and 3 more were climbing. We needed to wait one more car so all of us could be transported to the next point. The mountain rescue guy showed us an abandoned hut so we hastly made our way inside. It was a 2/2meter room with no door that was perfect as it was not raining or too windy inside :) We even got some platanas (local bananas) which I greatly appreciated as I was super hungry (always am during these races). After about an hour waiting the 3 guys arrived and the first car picked us up and drove us to the Roque Nublo Parking. All of this I kind of deducted as it happened as there were no English speakers beside me :)
    When we got to the parking the guys said go. I opened the door of the car and someone closed it immediately back. I opened it again and realized it was the wind :) It was so windy and it was rainind so bad I would give anything for another 10 minutes in the car. But we needed to get out so we did. We waited for 5 minutes for someone to come and show us the way and we started descending in 2 small groups. One of the guys showed me there were some reflective markings on the ground and I deducted we need to follow them from now on. It was cold so I decided to run downhill to warmup so I did. This made me faster than the second group I was in and I went ahead trying to catch the first group. I could see their lights from time to time but it was so windy that my rain jacked and rain poncho were constantly blown on my face making visibility bad. Also decided to run with my hands and poles under my rain poncho as my hands were freezing (gloves were wet and wind was freezing everything in its path). Ran for about 5k downhill but the wind and rained were still there. I was following the reflective marking as it was way easier that checking my GPS device each 20 seconds to see if I am on the track. I was just double checking with the GPS each couple of minutes and, at some point, I could hear a warning that indicated I was out of the track. I stopped, thought about it, and thought that "Ok, the guy showed me the signs. They probably marked this path so we can get faster down and avoid this storm". So off I went ignoring my watch for the next 2.5km. I went down on a nice 'Roman' road paved with bricks and I could see the light of a village in the distance. I was so happy :) I also dropped about 400m in this 2.5k so it was not so cold anymore and the wind was way more mellow here. Additionally from this point I could see pretty far ahead and there was no one. I knew that I ran pretty fast at this point in the race and I knew I should have someone in front. I should see lights but there were none. I stopped and checked my watch and I was definitely out of the track but the reflective signs were there. I just passed one that said km.35. But no. This cannot be. I really should see someone. During this moment of great inspiration I decided to call the emergency number from my BIB and ask the guys if I am ok or not. I reached them and while the guy that answered was not fluent in English I understood that I was out by 2.5k from the track. He even asked me if I want to stop or get back to the race. What?! :) No way I am stopping at km 180. I sigh and started climbing and bread crumbing my way back to where I thought I knew I got to the left instead of going right. I was lucky because somehow, with all the cold and the wind, I was feeling great and my spirit was not broken about this mishap. I got to the point that I thought was incorrect and after calling the guy and going around in circles for about 10 minutes I managed to find the track. Oh joy! Continued running noticing I was about 17km from Soria and looking at the track it seemed like an easy downhill. Continued for about 2km and noticed a sign that said "Roque Nublo 3.4km". Yey! At this point I was on a clear trail that I could see, there was a full moon but wind and raid were still there. In about 500m I reached this big rock formation in the middle of the trail and the track looked that it went straight ahead. It was like a big (100m?) rock plateau that was climbable but when I reached the edge I could not see down but the track was still going forward. I got back and tried going around it on the left or right side but there were cliffs everywhere and they were impassable. Tried climbing on it again and again, going back to the last location that I managed to be exactly on track but it was in vain. The visibility was poor (maybe 10 meters ahead) and the rain/wind combination was making thinks way worse. After about 20-25 minutes of going in circles I decided to call the emergency number again and discuss the situation with them as they might be able to help. They mentioned that they cannot see exactly where I was (all participants were equipped with a gps tracked in this race) and I should definetely not try to climb. They told me they can see my latest position and I was on the track so I should continue straight. Oooook. Hanged up and tried again and again. There was no way of going ahead so I called them again. They could not help so I asked if there was someone else coming but the next runner was more than 2 hours behind. At this point I was getting colder and colder as I was not moving and It was getting colder and colder outside (it was about 12AM by now). I tried again and again to find the track but to no success. The organization called and told me to return to the latest point on the track I could find because they sent mountain rescue after me. I knew I was not far from roque nublo and they mentioned they were coming from there so I was relieved. I quickly found 2 big rocks and decided to 'camp' in between them as the rain was not so bad and I was protected by most of the wind coming from all directions.After about 20 minutes I started to run around as I definetely needed to get warmer. I had all my clothes on me and, at this point, I was a bit scarred as I did not knew how much I had to wait. I opened my backpack and decided to use the emergency blanket I had. Got my rain ponch and rain jacked down, put the blanket around my body and put the jacket and rain ponch over it. While I could not feel my hands the body became warmer and the blanked made a huge difference. After this I started yelling each 30 seconds and waving my headlamp so I couldbe seen. Not more that 20 minutes, which seemed an eternity, I could see one light coming from over the rock I was trying to pass. It was the mountain rescue guy. I made sure I was seen and heard and he got to me in no time. He followed his protocol asking if I was the one I should be rescued , called the HQ, mentioned my number, and then asked me to follow him. We started in the rock direction and once we got on top of it the guy dropped down into the abyss with me following him. Actually it was a small jump but not knowing/seeing anything made it impossible for me to think about it while alone. We continue scrambling on this rocky ridge and at some point realized we were again out of the track. We looked around, we went in circles a few times and in about 5 minutes they guy found a rock pyramid that he spotted while coming to me. We went around it and here we were back on the track. I politely asked him if we can run , as I desperately needed to warm up, and we did until we hit a road with a parking lot where a van was waiting. He told me this is as much as he can go and told me I should continue down as the road is totally straight and I cannot make any mistakes. I created a shirt out of the survival banket and ran my way down the road - thanking him again because he, most likely, just saved my life.
    I continued down, passed Roque Nublo, stopping for a brief second but realizing that I could not see anything anyway. The rain almost stopped but the strong wind was still there pushing me from both sides like a washing machine. At this point I was feeling pretty spent from all the cold and running. I tried to eat something and drink some water and continued down until I could see a light in front of me and I passed one guy after saying 'Hi' by just raising my eyes from the ground. I got to a road and it was so cold outside as we were quickly approaching the coldest moment of the night - just before sunrise. There was an ambulance on the road waiting for us in case someone from the race is in need of assistance. At this point I felt weak and cold and I stopped near the car thinking about asking them if I could stay for 10 minutes in the car so I warm up. I just ate a bar in 30s and sarted slowly. The driver went down from the car and pointed me the direction somehow thinking that it was a problem for me but I knew where I was going. I just did`nt wanted to :)
I think the next 12 km to Soria were the hardest ones from the race. It was extremely cold outside and we were going on these ups and down on these hills that seemed never endind. I think I climbed about 1000m here and I was simply at the end my resouces. I was constantly checking my watch and it looked like I made no progress while feeling more and more weaker and sleepier. I was having hallucinations again but this time there were not funny at all. Caffeine had no effect anymore as I gulped gel after gel and my energy levels were down to 0. I was basically crawling at a snail pace counting the remaining km and checking the incoming climbs and descents on my watch. When there was just descent I started slowly running through the many rocks and was amazed I did not fell as I was barely seeing anything at this point. While I am not a religious person I prayed to God several times on this 12km stretch promising that I will behave if he gets me through it.  It took me all night to get through and I reached Soria at about 6 AM in the morning, when it was still dark outside. One more marathon with 'just' 1600 ascent.
    I was convinced that I need to sleep here so I immediately asked for a bed and some food. Unfortunately everyone was spend and the only place left , along other 3 competitors, was the checkpoing floor. They quickly lay down a banner with the race logo and I crawled and crumbled on the floor tryint to get at least one hour of sleep in between the in and out door of the checkpoint. I put on my ear plugs and I think I managed to get half an hour of sleep before a volunteer let me know If there is a free bed now. I moved but I could not sleep anymore so at about 8 AM I decided to leave. It was a beautiful morning with no rain and just about the right amount of wind so I slowly made my way out of the checkpoint and on the last 41.8km left of the track. I left alone but I catch some Spanish guys that I went along with for most of they day, not understanding one work but keeping myself busy trying to. Was sleepy several times and then recovered but knowing I was almost done made me ignore this and push through. At midday it was extremely hot outside as the sun in scorching in the Canaries even in February. I pushed through the last climb which would be nothing in normal circumstances , 1 km with 400 ascent, Pretty steep but really clear path going in zig zag. At the top we had 22km to go and as soon as I got there I heard other runners coming fast from the top as we were on the same track as the Advanced, Marathon and Clasic races (125km, 60km and 42 km). This kept me busy while going downhill as I had to pay atention to who was coming behind me and clear the path to the right as they still had something in their legs compared to us.
    We continued down for 2-3km more and then the 360 had to pass another mountain :), leaving the easy track behind and going again on some unmarked 'trails' up and then down through a myriad of rocks. At this point I just wanted to finish and was power hiking and walking as fast as I could. We hit the road again and intersected with the other races again, at this point having 13km to the finish line.
This last part was through a riverbed full of rocks that made running super risky at this point in the race. Additionally I was so afraid not to twist an ankle this far in the race that I decided to walk as I was probabbly gaining an hour at most and there was no real sense of doing it.
    I passed the finish line just as the sun was setting, at about 8 PM, in an-again medicre time of 82 hours or so. On top of this I got a penalty for that 'moving' operation but somehow I gained a few positions in the rankings puttin me at position 38 out of 52 finishers. There were 18 DNFs.

    Now...What I am certain of after this race is that I went deeper that I ever did. I felt the worst and in the worst situation ever in a race. I was quite lucky that the organizers decided to send someone and I was inspired to use the blanket and camp between those 2 rocks. I did longer and harder races but during this one I suffered the most. I am not sure if it was the weather or not - probably yes. Additionally I felt that I moved well even though my time was mediocre. Lost too many hours and energy going the wrong way (2 or 3). I learned a lot and , If I continue to do these races, I will definitely get the absolute best equipment ever. Even if it means carrying a bit more. I had everything and extra but we were not expecting this. Heck the organizers did not expected this as they told us that the weather will be fine at least on Wednesday and Thursday and it was not.
    I need to reflect if it is worth continuing or I should probably take it easy and maybe allow myself to die in my bed and not on an island in the middle of a mountain :)
    Time will tell...

Sunday, March 3, 2019

TransGrandCanaria 360 - the Resurrection


A trecut ceva vreme de cand am simtit ca trebuie sa scriu aici.

Din 2017 am decis sa alerg doar curse noi si sa nu mai fac aceasi cursa de 2x dar, in cazul TransGrandCanaria, am simtit ca am executat atat de slab incat am vrut sa revin.
Eram atat de sigur ca o pot face mai bine cu usurinta incat nu i-am dat prea mare importanta. M-am antrenanat la fel ca in ultimii ani, consistent, cu multe alergari lungi cu diferenta de nivel (1500-2000m+/alergare).

     Intrucat mi-a placut foarte mult cursa din 2018 m-am inscris din timp. Cred ca din Iulie sau Iunie 2018. Am aflat ca Viorica Henry si Adrian Toma vor merge si ei si ne-am organizat pentru a sta impreuna. Au refuzat sa mearga la un gay friendly hotel dar nimeni nu este perfect :)

     Adrian vrea si el la cursa lunga. Nu m-a intrebat prea multe lucruri si nici eu nu i-am spus. O sa vedeti ca o sa fie usor mirat :) si foarte dezamagit. Cel putin pana uita si se inscrie din nou. Ii dau maxim 1-2 luni.


     Viorica a zis ca ea vrea mancare si apa si s-a inscris la cursa din UTWT - 128km cu ~ 7000m urcare.

     Dar sa ne intoarcem la perioada de pregatire. Vedeti voi, mie nu nu imi place sa fac curse. Serios! Imi place foarte mult sa ma antrenez. Stiu ca pare ciudat ce spun dar cursele sunt pentru mine doar motive pentru o pauza a antrenamentelor. Si asta s-a schimbat in ultimii 2 ani. Pana in 2016 si chiar inceputul lui 2017 eram destul de competitiv. Imi alegeam cursele cu atentie pentru a fi 'la maxim' si imi alegeam intotdeauna curse care ma favorizau. Sunt mai bun pe cursele 'alergabile' ca sa zic asa.
Cursele lungi pe care le fac in ultimii ani nu ma avantajeaza deloc, nu imi place sa fac antrenamente specifice pentru ele si greutatea mea actuala (68kg la 181cm) imi face destul de grea evolutia la ele. Nutritia in cursa este foarte importanta, orice pas gresit insemnand 'zidul'.
Cu toate astea perseverez : M-am inscris la ToR in 2018, cursa inaintea careia m-am accidentat destul de rau, si apoi la TransGrandCanaria360 a 2-a oara, o cursa de 250km in Grecia , Leadville (aici poate stralucesc si eu :) ) si PTL, in echipa cu Costica Anghel, alturi de care m-am si antrenat in ultima vreme.

     Revenind la TransGrandCanaria si la modul cum am tratat cursa pot spune ca am fost extrem de relaxat inainte. Nu m-am uitat aproape deloc la traseu, mi-am facut un plan mental si mi-am propus sa experimentez legat de nutritie si, mai ales, somn. La ToR am dormit prea mult si vroiam ca acum sa corectez aceasta greseala facand pauze de maxim 1 ora de somn.

     Dupa 2 zile de relaxare inainte de cursa (macare si somn) ne-am pregatit kiturile de concurs si gentile pentru cele 5 puncte de odihna.

     Ca si anul trecut am observat destui participanti cu veste mici in care nu pot incapea toate cele. Oricine a facut vreodata o cursa cu atat de mult echipament stie acest lucru.
Ma uimeste si mahneste dorinta unora de a iesi in evidenta cu orice pret.
Intotdeauna m-am ghidat dupa niste principii in viata, principii pe care imi place sa cred ca le-am 'dat' mai departe si copiilor mei. Acestea spun ca mereu sa fiu corect cu mine insumi. Cum altfel as putea sa ma bucur de o reusita daca stiu ca nu am respectat regulile? Este corect fata de restul participantilor? Cat de competitiv sa fiu sa uit aceste aspecte? Ce as vrea sa justific ca sa nu respect aceste principii?
Ma rog. Suntem diferiti si cred ca asta este si una dintre partile interesante ale vietii. Ar fi ciudat ca toti sa fim la fel - ghidati de aceleasi valori si principii. Despre ce-as mai scrie eu acum? :)

     Cursa a inceput rapid - ca si anul trecut. S-a plecat destul de tare intr-o dimineata insorita de 20 Februarie. Am plecat foarte relaxat stiind ce urmeaza sa se intample. Cred ca eram printre ultimii 10 in primii 10km. Ma distrau gafaielile din jur. Imi aminteau de ToR si de cei care ne depaseau prin stanga si prin dreapta cararii in primii 20 de km de cursa.
  Adrian era in fata, destul de concentrat. Il tot strigam dar nu raspundea deloc. Eu vroiam sa ma distrez si el lua totul foarte in serios. Mai sa fie. Sa fie ca in cartea lui Stephen King The Long Walk? Ultimul este impuscat?
La km 15, spre supriprinderea multora si a mea, am intrat intr-un canal intunecat plin cu apa. Daca asta nu era suficient s-a mers cativa km prin el si namolul de pe fundul lui a patruns incet in pantofi si sosete. M-am curatat cat am putut de bine dar nu impecabil Am norocul sa nu fac usor bataturi sau basici.
Canalele aratau ca mai jos doar ca aveau apa care varia intre 10 si 30 de cm.

Image result for gran canaria water tunnels

De aici inainte, pana la km 70, am mers aproape singur.Am mers relaxat si m-am bucurat de peisaje. In jur de km 50 m-am oprit la un supermarket si mi-am cumparat ceva de mancare. Estimasem destul de gresit necesarul pe primii 70km.

La km la in punct am gasit un participant cu glezna rupta. Jean imi spusese mai devreme ca 'He is racing hard!'. Din pacate a fost prea hard. Ulterior, la finish, am aflat ca fusese deja operat si avea si suruburi. Pentru o elita asta inseamna o pauza lunga in cariera. Imi pare rau pentru el.

Am mancat copios si, in acest timp, am pus ceasul la incarcat la organizatori. Am zis sa nu-mi consum acumulatorul portabil daca exista alternative. Tot aici am constatat ca, dintr-o greseala/graba am uitat sa imi las ciorapi de schimb. Ciorapii erau deja scoarta de la namol si picioarele ma usturau. Asta a fost prima greseala care m-a costat.
Am plecat dupa cam 30 de minute in alergare usoara incercand sa dau drumul la al doilea segment din cursa. Dupa nici 200m imi dau seama ca mi-au disparut trackurile de pe ceas. Mai sa fie. Ma intorc repede in checkpoint pentru ca-l vazusem pe Martin de la care puteam sa le transfer dar nu mai era in zona.
Am cautat repede pe cineva care avea ceas Garmin la mana, i-am cerut telefonul, mi-am adaugat contul si mi-am trimis din nou trackurile. Inca 30 de minute timp pierdut si frustrare nemarginita.
Mi-a trecut prin cap sa ma opresc dar am zis ca nu are sens. O sa ma bucur de cursa in continuare.

     Am plecat singur si l-am ajuns din spate pe Matteo. Il stiam de la ToR. Mai mersesem impreuna acolo. Ne-am salutat si am mers impreuna in urmatoarea noapte si dimineata pana in jur de km 125. El suferea destul de tare si a rams in urma sa se odhineasca. Eu pierdusem mult in greutate si pantalonii nu mai stateau bine pe mine. Din aceasta cauza m-am frecat foarte tare intre picioare. Asta a fost a doua greseala: nu imi luasem vaselina.
     Am decis sa continui singur. La km 125 am dormit o ora si m-am trezit ca nou. Am plecat mai departe cu gandul sa merg pana la km 153. Al treilea segment parea simplu:28km cu 1700 ascent. N-a fost chiar asa. L-am ajuns din urma pe Steven, un Olandez care se antrena doar cu crossfit pentru curse montane (asta da vointa). Toala lumea stie ca in Olanda, daca pui o masa si urci pe ea, se vad granitele.

     Urmeaza o coborarea destul de tehnica si apoi o urcare prin gradina cuiva, urcare unde mi-am rupt pantalonii si m-am zgariat in toate locurile unde nu ma zgariasem deja. Am ajuns la urmatorul punct si am decis sa ma odihnesc o ora. Am stat intins dar din cauza ca luasem ceva cofeina n-am putut sa adorm. Am decis sa plec mai departe. Aceasta a fost a 3-a greseala. Cu toate ca ma simteam ok in cateva ore mi s-a facu atat de somn incat a trebuit sa dorm de cateva ori pe marginea drumului. Am plecat cu un Francez care nu vorbea decat Franceza si am inaintat foarte prost in aceast noapte. Cred ca am facut doar 20-25km. Ne-am oprit intr-un bar la 5 dimineata si ne-am uitat la stiri, ne-am baut cafeaua, si am plecat mai departe. Pe mine m-a luat somnul din nou si m-am culcat pe o banca in parc timp de 5 minute. El a continuat si nu l-am mai ajuns.
Am plecat singur mai departe din am intrat in canionul in care fusesem si anul trecut. Stiam ca este superba zona si m-am bucurat de ea. La final insa m-am ratacit. Ma vedeam pe track dar acesta se oprea brusa la o cascada unde incepea un nou tunel. Speram sa nu fie iar prin tunel pentru ca nu mai puteam. M-am uitat prin el cu frontala si erau urme pe jos semn ca cineva o luase pe acolo. Am refuzat acest lucru si am sunat la organizatori. Spre norocul meu (!!) directorul tehnic al cursei nu vorbeste Engleza si tot ce reusesc sa aflu e ca sunt pe track si sa continui :)
Aici am pierdut cam 1 ora in care m-am invartit pe toate potecile, intr-un final apoteotic vazand ca drumul face 180 de grade brusc inapoi si urca pe o muchie. Cararea de deasupra era foarte aproape de cararea de jos si de aici confuzia. Poate daca eram cu cineva nu greseam. Cat am stat nu m-a ajuns nimeni din urma...
Am urcat pe Pico del Rey - stiam urcarea de anul trecut. Aproape in 4 labe. Am coborat spre Teror si aici am fost ajuns de Eric cu care am continuat superba Creasta pe o temperatura de 35 de grade la umbra, umbra pe care o cautam si nu o gaseam sub nici o forma. Am coborat din creasca impreuna, am batut la usa unui localnic, pentru ca ramasesem fara apa. Foarte ospitalieri ne-au dat apa din belsug. Am coborat la un restaurant unde am mancat atat de mult incat am gresit dumul cu 500m (in plus) si asa am ajuns in Valsequillo :) Aici ne-am culcat o ora si am decis sa continuam impreuna. Tot aici am constatat ca aveam o basica extrem de mare la unul dintre picioare. Nimic care sa ma opreasca dar ceva nou. Am decis sa merg la medic care a spart-o si mi-a pansat-o. A fost o alegere buna.
De aici aveam o ultima mare urcare de ~ 1600m pozitiv. Urcarea a fost cum a mai fost dar coborarea pana la St. Lucia ne-a distrus pur si simplu. Ma dureau picioarele atat de tare - si ma refer la tendoanele si oasele din labele picioarelor - ca nu mai stiam ce sa fac. Am pierdut foarte multa vreme pe aceasta bucata. Ulterior am aflat ca Adi ma astepta in Santa Lucia dar ca a cedat si bine a facut. Nu ma simteam senzational si imi doream sa se termine mai repede.


In St. Lucia stiam ca sunt conditii foarte bune de somn. Am dormit o ora, am mancat si am plecat.
De aici pana la finish ne-am tarat. Eric a avut o problema destul de urata inainte de barajul de pe utlima bucata. Nasul ii sangera foarte tare si nu se mai oprea. Ne-am oprit si am improvizat un bandaj din fasa elastica care a funtionat de minute.
12 ore. Atat am facut pe ultima bucata. Aici am invatat ca nu se moare asa usor. Termomentrul din ceas imi arata 37 de grade dar sigur temperatura resimtita era mai mare. Simteam cu dogoreste nisipul. Am ramas fara apa dar am gasit un magazin intr-un orasel mic la 20 de km de finish. A fost un adevarat exercitiu psihologic sa termin. Nu puteam sa alerg din cauza caldurii, altfel cred ca as fi alergat de nervi, si am mers 30 de km in 6 ore. Prin oras am tinut mortis sa urmam tot trackul si am coborat si urcat toate scarile de pe plaje :)
A fost frumos dar nu mai vin :)

   Timpul final a fost, din nou, mediocru. Nu cred ca oglindeste pregatirea mea curenta dar asa cum iti asterni asa dormi. Daca sunt suparat sunt suparat doar pe mine. Poate as fi putut sa ma implic putin mai tare in acest esec :)
Am invatat foarte multe lucruri si asta ma bucura. Chiar daca am mers prost am invatat exact cum sa-mi dozez somnul, dopurile de ureche au facut minuni, ce am testat ca nutritie este senzational si nu mi-a facut nici o problema in timpul cursei, aparent poti sa merg priontr-o caldura senzationala fara sa mor si am devenit relativ exper la power napping :) Pana la urma la umbra unui banan nu mai dormisem.

   Semnele imi spun sa raman la curse pana la 100 de mile (inclusiv) dar voi persevera. Pana la urma frumusetea vine din incercarea de a ne depasii limitele. Urmeaza o cursa de 250km pe care abia o astept - chiar daca a trecut doar o saptamana dupa Iadul numit GrandCanaria.

Mai jos - din ciclul "Daca doriti sa revedeti" :) Dauna totala.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

2016 - I

Sper ca anul aceasta sa postez mai des dar nu-mi propun asta. Scriu aici mai mult pentru Andrei si Anastasia. Poate ca intr-o zi o sa citeasca ce-am scris...

In 2016 mi-am propus sa alerg prima cursa de 100 de mile. Am stat si am analizat mult situatia pentru ca vroiam sa fie o cursa speciala atat ca locatie cat si ca traseu. Intr-un final m-am decis sa particip la Ultra Trail Mount Fuji. Acesta a fost telul final si tot ce urma sa fac in decursul anului era un antrenament pentru aceasta cursa.

     Si totul a inceput cu o cursa mai 'usoara' dupa o lunga pregatire de iarna: Ultra Trail Hungary in data de 15.05.2016. 115km - 4600m diferenta pozitiva de nivel. O cursa interesanta care ma avantajeaza pentru ca este foarte alergabila. Mi-a placut mult ca startul s-a dat la 12 noaptea - a fost prima cursa in care am alergat cu frontala foarte mult - aproximativ 8 ore - si a fost si prima cursa sub 'culorile' SportGuru BCR Racing Team.

     Asteptarile erau mari. Daniel era nerabdator pentru ca plouase foarte mult inainte de cursa si lui ii place noroiul. Il puteti vedea zambind in poza de mai sus :)

     Si pe cat de usoara credeam ca o sa fie pe atat de dificila a fost. Noroiul excesiv m-a facut sa trag foarte mult pe urcari si ploaia torentiala din timpul cursei ,care a durat ore in sir, n-a facut lucrurile mai usoare. Marcajul prost a fost si el un impediment: prima cursa la care m-a trezit ca ma uit la cer si nu stiam ce s-a intamplat. Dadusem cu capul (frontala) intr-un pom cazut in mijlocul potecii si nu, n-am fost singurul, Ulterior am aflat ca mai toata lumea l-a 'luat' in plin. Am vazut stele verzi. La propriu. O da! Lanternele Petzl sunt extraordinare! O sa vedeti mai tarziu in an de ce :)

    Aici l-am cunoscut si pe Marian total intamplator. Din ciclul 'great minds think alike' :) am facut rezervare la aceasi pensiune si am stat usa in usa. Din pacate a fost nevoit sa abandoneze din cauza unor probleme la genunchi.

     Am reusit o clasare pe locul 11 undeva in 14h55minute, mult peste ce visam eu ca o sa fac. Si da, de obicei imi setez asteptarile jos :) A fost un bun antrenament pentru ce va urma.

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Si a urmat Zagori Mountain Run. O cursa pe care Daniel mi-a sugerat-o si, dupa ce am analizat zona, am zis ca trebuie sa ajung acolo. Am incercat sa aflu mai multe detalii de la oameni din comunitatea de alergatori, oameni care stiam ca au ajuns la cursa si de la care vroiam sa aud niste detalii. N-am reusit. Cred ca mi-am setat asteptarile prea sus...
  Cu ajutorul lui Mihail Papadopulous am reusit sa ne inscriem si spun 'ne' pentru ca am fost cu Fane si Florin + Cata. Cursa e cam cea mai populara din Grecia si in Iunie locurile erau 100% ocupate.
  Eu si Fane am ales cursa de 80km/5100m diferenta pozitiva de nivel si Florin a ales semimaratorul sau cum i se mai spune: cursa populara :)

Cursa este localizata intr-un masiv muntos de pe coasta de Vest a Greciei, la ~ 60 de km de Marea Ionica si insula Corfu. O zona superba dar extrem de calduroasa in luna Iulie. Mai jos o luasem invers pe traseul cursei sa vedem ce ne asteapta pe final.

Un pod peste care trecea traseul de maraton.

 Centrul satului. Exista foarte multa piatra si totul era facut din ea.

Pe finalul ultimei urcari serioase la km 30. Startul a fost la 4:50 AM si pana la ora 9 AM a fost ok. Dupa aceea temperatura era insuportabila - cred ca real feel + 40 de grade. Cursa a avut 3500m de urcare in primii 32 de km.

Cu Fane la o incarcare cu de toate dupa cursa :)

Interesectia cu Fane in cursa.

Piata din care s-a dat startul cursei.

Cu Florin, Fane si Cata in Kipoi la startul cursei populare. Dupa ziua in care era sa moara de sete in munti si a fost salvat de ciobani:) Cuvantul zilei: Cryo :)

Asteptandu-l pe Florin la finish am poposit la locul unde Fane statuse intins pe o piatra pentru 15 minute din cauza caldurii :) Un adevarat loc de inspiratie si pelerinaj :)

Si profilul cursei cu eroare de GPS de rigoare...

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Am terminat cursa pe pozitia 22, a 3-a fata :)

   Si a urmat TDS. Cursa pentru care, nu stiu de ce, nu am avut mari asteptari. Am plecat cu Andrei cu trenul, pentru a 2-a oara, si am avut o calatorie plina de peripetii incepand de la faptul ca s-a rupt sina la Baile Herculane. Era sa pierdem trenul din Budapeste dar ne-au asteptat si am alergat, insotiti de politie, ca sa putem sa ajungem mai repede :)
Din Zurich drumul pana in Chamonix este absolut superb. Nu-ti poti lua ochii de pe geam. As merge si a 3-a oara cu trenul doar pentru portiunea asta cu toate ca multi nu ma inteleg de ce aleg varianta asta :)

Am stat cu totii intr-un apartament: Radu, Dumitru, Mada, Victor, Marmota, Eu si Andrei. A fost o saptamana foarte reusita in care ne-am plimbat mult, mai ales dupa cursa, si am ramas cu o gramada de amintiri frumoase.

Cursa in sine a fost probabil cea mai buna cursa de Ultra a mea. Am plecat cumpatat, asa cum o fac mereu, si m-am bucurat de fiecare km pana la 90 cand, cred ca din cauza isotonicului pe care l-am baut din greseala, mi s-a facut greata si rau. A fost prim si, pana acum ,ultima oara cand mi s-a facut rau intr-o cursa. Am stat la cortul medical unde mi-au dat 3 pastile si mi-am revenit dar am pierdut cam 1 ora si, oricat am tras, n-am reusit sa ma recuperez. As vrea sa fac din nou cursa pentru ca stiu ca puteam mai bine...

In rest - traseul superb. Mult mai salbatic si tehnic decat CCC-ul, cu aproape 1200m in plus ca diferenta de nivel pozitiva si 20km. O cursa grea si, in opinia mea, subestimata de organizatori. O cursa cu mai putine puncte de hidratare/alimentare care se bazeaza foarte mult pe autonomia alergatorilor.

Pozitia 56.

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   Si la finish - dauna partiala dupa o cazatura in cap. Tot frontala Petzl m-a salvat si aici dar am ramas cu o urma rotunda in frunte cateva saptamani :)

Dupa TDS a urmat cursa pentru care ma pregatisem tot anul: UTMF. Am calatorit o zi intreaga pana la destinatie si experienta a fost una extraordinara. Cateva zile n-am stiu pe ce lume traiesc. Diferenta culturala este atat de mare incat eram bulversat la propriu. De asemenea jet lag-ul n-a ajutat deloc. Dormean eratic cand ziua cand noaptea dar pana la cursa s-a mai reglat - am ajuns cu ~ 1 saptamana inainte. Ne-am plimbat mult pana la cursa dar Septembrie este luna in care ploaua aproape in fiecare zi in Japoia - luna musonilor. Am prin un taifun si localnici spuneau ca ploua de 3 saptamani. Umiditate foarte mare, temperaturi intre 20 si 30 de grade si nici urma de soare. Premizele nu erau bune...
Si s-a dovedit, in ziua cursei, ca asa era...
Cu 3 ore inainte de start ploua usor. Cum sunt prevazator am ajuns la start cu 2 ore inainte :)
Am avut norocul sa dau de singurul roman care mai erau inscrisi la cursa. Pe Andrei l-am lasat in camera si l-am rugat sa ma sune din 30 in 30 de minute. Nu a facut-o deci eram fiert...
Cu 30 de minute inainte de start ne-au anuntat ca amana startul cu 1 ora din cauza ploii. Am zis 'Asta este!' si am continuat sa astepta. La ora 16:00 inainte sa se dea startul ne-au anuntat ca, din cauza ploii, scurteaza cursa la 43 de km. Dezamagirea a fost imensa dar odata ce am ajuns pe partea opusa a muntelui am inteles ca nu se putea face nimic cand natura este dezlantuita. O ploaie atat de torentiala si un vant asa puternic n-am prins niciodata pe munte. Cu frontala la maxim nu vedem la 1 m in fata picioarelor pe unde sa calc. Am ajuns in ~ 5 ore la finish luand cursa ca pe un antrenament, distrungadu-mi punctajul ITRA :), si bucurandu-ma ca ne-am oprit pentru ca altfel faceam hipotermie...
Am reflectat si, in timpul ramas, ne-am plimbat prin toata Japonia. A fost o experienta senzationala pe care nu o pot povestii in cuvinte dar care merita traita. Mai jos cateva poze:

Prima masa :)

 Toaletele erau exceptionale: 3 nivele de incalzire, senzor pentru tragerea apei, 2 tipuri de moduri in care sa fi sters la fund...


Coada ordonata la asteptarea trenului...

Insula de pe care se da startul cursei.

Mancarea de baza pentru cele 3 saptamani. Orez cu alge :)

Hotel de lux pentru animale de companie.

Vagon de tren pe o linie privata: Fuji - Tokyo

Terasa in gradina zoologica din Tokyo.

Avionul cu care ne-am intors: Boeing 787 Dreamliner - Star Wars Edition.

Si cum va spuneam ca lucrurile se intampla intotdeauna cu un motiv continuarea povestii in 2016 - partea a 2-a :)

Multumesc pentru lectura!

Friday, March 18, 2016


Si au trecut aproape 2 ani de cand am scris ultima data...
Ok. Recunosc ca nu-mi place sa scriu despre mine.

S-au intampla multe de atunci. Am alergat prima mea cursa de peste100km, am alergat a 2-a mea cursa de peste 100km, am alergat a 3-a mea cursa de 100km si acum ma pregatesc pentru a 4-a cursa.

De asemenea, in Octombrie 2015, am trecut printr-o experienta care m-a schimbat profund si continua sa ma schimbe. Am inceput sa cred ca totul se intampla pentru un motiv si totul se leaga atat de bine intr-un tot unitar.
Am fost in genunchi dar am inceput sa ma ridic...

Mai jos poze de la cateva curse la care am alergat in 2014 si 2015 care, sper , vorbesc de la sine.

Toate cele bune!

CCC 2015

Cu Scott Jurek la scurta vreme dupa ce a batut recordul de traversare a Appalachian Trail:

 Cu Thierry - locul 3 la V1 - Am alergat impreuna aproape 40 de km:

Cu Iulian - iti multumesc pentru ajutor!

Poze pe drumul spre CCC cu Hippy Mobilul

Iesirea din Cortul de la km60. Urma sa ne controleze echipamentul obligatoriu.
Km 90 si ~5000m pozitiv in 13 1/2 ore.

Elvetia pe drumul de intoarcere de la CCC

CCC - din timpul cursei

Zermatt Marathon 2015 - Elvetia.
Vacanta cu Andrei

Natura Ultra Trail 2014 - Greece - poate cea mai frumoasa cursa din 2015

Prieteni noi si vechi:

Natura Trail Race - 31.05.2015 - Ma pregateam sa schimb ciorapii si adidasii la Km 60. Am alergat singur urmatorii 50km.

 Si poate cea mai buna bere bauta vreodata :)

Lansarea unui proiect de suflet - cel mai important de pana acum - Teamrun:

Petrecerea de Craciun Teamrun - 2015

Baneasa Trail Race 2015:

Si o filmare foarte reusita de la CCC 2015 editata si realizata de Iulian Grigore. Merci Iulian!

Alba Iulia City Race 2014 - Pe varful Mamut a 2-a zi dupa cursa cu Alin, Daniel si Florin.

Alba Iulia City Race Martie 2014

Cu Andrei in Alba Iulia imediat dupa cursa copiilor - Martie 2014

Novi Sad Half Marathon Aprilie 2014 - Ultimul meu semimaraton pe asfalt pentru multa vreme :)
Momentul in care Florin m-a initiat in tainele GeoCaching ;)

 La finish-ul Novi Sad Half Marathon 2014:

 Winter Tri 2014 - Primul (si singurul) meu Triathlon pe distanta scurta. Ma pregateam sa inchei cu inotul. Un timp decent de 1h06 (5km alergare, 20km bicicleta si 500m inot).
Plusuri: Am fost 'chicked' de o singura fata si am supravietuit inotului :)

 Un antrenament scurtat din cauza zapezii. 5km in 2 ore. Zapada pana la brau. A fost...interesant.
Momentul ala cand pleci din Azuga si te intorci cu trenul din Predeal :)

Nu se intampla in fiecare zi sa ramai blocat din cauza ninsorii in Bulgaria in luna Octombrie.
Intoarcerea de la Natura Trail Race 2015. Localitatea Kotel din Bulgaria.

O masa ecologica in fara scolii unde eram cazati. Octombrie 2015, Paranesti, Grecia.

 Hercules Marathon 2014

Semimaraton Gerar 2015 - campus Politehnica. Echipa Bearded Runners in actiunea.

Brasov Marathon 2015:

Una dintre imaginile folosite ca publicitate pentru lansarea TeamRun:

Alba Iulia City Race 2015 - Din pacate in 2016 nu s-a mai putut organiza.

Antrenament Azuga Februarie 2015. S-a facut un checkin obligatoriu la stana :)

 Zapada neinceputa la Azuga Februarie 2015

 Lansare TeamRun la Alba Iulia City Race 2015:

Alergare pentru cei care nu pot - Wings for Life 2015. 38.5km spre mare. Din pacate m-a ajuns masina inainte de Lehliu :)

CCC 2015 la Finish - Ii rugasem pe baieti sa ma astepte cu o bere rece si ma pregateam sa o savurez.

Cu Luis Alberto Hernano la CCC 2015.