Me posing as the winner of the 2021 Bunketorp Backyard Ultra Trail
The organisation made this race very easy to us despite the quite challenging course. Everything was as it should be and.... a bit better as well! ❤
After my performance the last year I had just one goal: to run at least one loop more than the year before.
The thing is that I achieved the goal and the result was me winning the whole race this year!!! ❤😁🏆
It wasn't easy, it hurt like every single muscle but I kept on fighting with a smile.
The race started and we were approx. 70 athletes racing on the challenging course. It's a hilly course, mostly easy to run with a few technical sections (loved those a lot). After 20k I had a huge issue with my energy and motivation. Such "fatigue" issue is usually nothing serious after just 20k so I kept on running and adjusted my pace accordingly. This situation was a good thing, that early in the race I got a free reminder of how important is to take your energy after each loop, to think about the food I was taking, the gear that was needed and clothes that had to match the weather and my body.
The race continued as planned, and I managed to mix different strategies during the race. I ran slower loops when I felt the need to recover and ran faster when I felt for it. I ran a few loops a bit too fast as well. This is one of the biggest mistakes while running a Backyard Ultra - to run too fast and burn out the muscles. But this time I played it well and despite a few times crushing a few downhills just for fun, I took the whole race easily.
The strategy of fighting against the course is one thing. The one "fighting" other fellow runners is something completely different. We are all friends out there, it's a close community of great people but there can be just one winner. Many of the runners are there maybe for the first time trying to reach a PB with some distance, a marathon mark is one step, than the 50k, the 80miles, the 100k and finally the 100 mile goal. After that last one it's a play for the win.
I started "playing" even before the 100-mile mark, maybe already after 140k I guess, when there were just 10 runners left. The tactique is a rude one, quite simple. You need to be the best, the strongest and look invincible as well. I guess that I did a good job with that. Everybody feels some level of pain or fatigue after 140km, but I managed to maintain my energy level on a good level and was able to run easily and quite fast those sections where other runners were. Sometimes I left huge gaps in order that the runner in front would not hear me behind and than minutes after just fly and run on... The other fellow runners must feel that you are invincible. You need to disguise/mask your appearance and be strong...
A Backyard Ultra is not just an endurance competition, it's a psychological competition as well.
A few images from the race made by my wife and/or the Bunketorp Backyard Ultra Trail:
The idea of racing for a win came as the year before when we were just 10 to start the new loop. I certainly wanted to try to fight for it but I tried to stay cool and play this game right....
I need to thank my family as well that supported me during this adventure for two days. They cheered and helped me when I needed some refill or extra food and I got some moral support as well. Amazing indeed. ❤😍 The best thing with this race was my daughter that loved to share the trails with her dad when she was there. She just started running for the local club a few months ago and an experience like this will surely boost her interest for the sport.
Loved it! ❤😍
It's time to rest now. My feet got some serious beating and my legs are a bit sore. Nothing unexpected for sure after almost 170km! 😜😁
If you like nature and if you'd like to hike or run a bit with the family I can recommend the Bunketorp area. The quantity of interesting trails is huge. 👍
Stats for the nerds:https://www.strava.com/activities/5757953932