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TRAIL Mail #12: Friday 17 June 2022
Sent to 9,743 readers

Training for trail's uphills.
Win SCARPA Spin Ultra shoes.
Run for Cape Town's fur nation.
Are you eating chia wrong?

     In this issue

  1. Trail Talk. Getting stronger on the uphills.
  2. Your adventures. Trail Trophies powered by issue 40.
  3. Gear. Oofos Ooriginal Sport Sandal for recovery.
  4. Races. 15 events in the next 30 days.
  5. News. Make your CT Trail Marathon count for more.
  6. Health. Have you been eating chia wrong?
  7. Training. Training vert for those big uphills.
  8. Competitions. Win Bridgedale and SCARPA.


"The strong get stronger" is a jibe that our cycling group mentor used when one of our group didn't make a session. He was right. Those who were consistent did get stronger. 

The principle applies to athletes who push their limits in a range of sports, and trail running is one of them. Especially in winter.

Use this one to improve your hill climbing abilities.

Running coach Sean Tait's article in this issue lets you choose from three intensities and three pace levels when training hills. 

Sean also answers the question: what about inclined treadmill training as a way to train for hilly races?

Read more in Training.


Get TRAIL back issues on Zinio
If you want to dive into the world of trail running from 2011 to present, check out all 42 issues of the mag on Zinio.

Hooray sponsors

You ask a lot from your feet on the trails. Before and after, give them the comfort they deserve.

Thanks to quality brands Feetures socks and Oofos sport sandals for sponsoring this week's newsletter.

Enjoy the rest of the read. Happy trails!

Deon Braun
TRAIL founder


Your #TrailTrophies photos.

(Above) Sunshine is good for the soul and it's even more welcome on a cold Highveld winter's morning that aches right into your bones.

Braam Smit captured a visual oxymoron: warm colours blazing a frosty moment during his Joburg trail run with friends Arno van der Merwe, Sandra Meyer, Johan Van Staden, and John Livanos.

A striking shot! 

Check out more reader photos in this week's Facebook post and add your own favourite pic from last week. All are eligible for our month-end Bridgedale sock giveaway prize. T&C apply.

Issue 40 (with Jo Keppler on the cover) is the sponsor of Trail Trophies this week. Have you read it? It has 200+ pages with a ton of reading.

TRAIL issue 40 features:
- a MEGA Ultra-Trail Drakensberg 2021 photo-feature
- tells Jo Keppler's remarkable story fighting substance addiction
- improves your strength through hill running
- helps you avoid and counter hypothermia
- and much more.

Chanel Gemae Visser ran a "wonderful 10km on Harkerville's MTO Trails in the Garden Route last weekend with my best friend, Bree."

If you're on a trail and it starts raining, snowing, or lightning flashes around you... you have to hope that you run into Rihaart Syms. He has a knack of finding the best caves. He also lets his photos do the talking: for this picture, "Constantia Nek Table Mountain Fitness Freaks" is the no-frills caption we got from him. 

Ian Martincich did a short out and back at Tunnel Creek above Lake Tahoe in Nevada.

Annelie Nel ran the Great Zuurberg Trail Run in the Addo district on the weekend. She also did some farming (learn other trail running terms in our lexicon article). "Ouch," was all she said. Heal well Annelie!

Adele Immelman did Run the Vines at Alto Wine Farm. "The 17km route was shortened due to the fire on Helderberg Mountain, but we still did 630m of elevation over 14.6 km. It's an absolutely stunning farm with beautiful views."


Oofos Ooriginal Sport Sandal R1,249

The OOFOS story begins with the OOriginal Sandal. This combination of sleek design and revolutionary OOfoam™ recovery technology is the foundation for all future styles and models.
OOfoam® technology absorbs 37% more impact than traditional footwear. Its proprietary footbed design reduces stress on knees, ankles and other joints.

The footbed cradles your arch and enables more natural motion. Its closed-cell foam is machine washable and designed to minimise odour.

The Ooriginal Sport Sandal (pictured) features bold, hand-painted graphics on the upper strap for a sporty look.

Colours: Black/Azul, Black/Graphite, Black/Pink, Blue Grid. Check it out.


View 15 events for the month ahead on our website now. 
Is yours missing? Click the button below to have it added.

PROMOTED EVENTS 2022 Get listed

George Mountain Ultra Trail. Sat 18 Jun (WC)
10km, 25km, 42km, 60km, 100km. Cradock Pass. Top Garden Route mountain running through stunning indigenous forests and fynbos.



Run for future greatness

Gandhi said “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

I guess the nations of the world have a long way to go before any kind of greatness can be claimed, but there are those working towards this goal.

One of them is the Cape of Good Hope SPCA (COGH SPCA). It is a registered non-profit organisation, which according to them improves the lives of more animals than any other animal welfare organisation in the Western Cape. It believes in improving the wellbeing of all animals and works tirelessly to prevent cruelty and foster compassion and care.  
All their work is funded by donations and they receive no government funding. Each year they purchase entries for Sanlam Cape Town Marathon (and now the Cape Town Trail Marathon) with the aim of using the platform to generate funds and create awareness of the work that they do.  
COGH have purchased limited Cape Town Trail 46km and 22km entries. They are appealing to you to join them and to commit to raising R3,500 and R2,200 respectively. All funds raised will be used to help their mobile clinics take primary veterinary care to animals in disadvantaged areas.



Have you been eating chia wrong?

You've been adding whole chia seeds to your oats, making your chia energy gels, and maybe topping your smoothies with whole chia seeds too.

It turns out that's not the best way to get the benefits of their array of phytonutrients. founder Dr Michael Greger explains what you should do first.


Preparing for trail's uphills

“Can I train to vertical elevation parameters on the trail, rather than distance?”

Sean Tait of Off the Mark Training says: "This is a very interesting question. Generally, we hear runners talking about, and subsequently training to, mileage or time parameters. The problem with this is that most of these runners are road runners. We are not… Well, at least not exclusively.

"Let’s first clarify that vertical elevation refers to the total number of metres ascended vertically (not the same as the length of a hill… chat to Mr Pythagoras) along the entire duration of your run.

"The difference between running 20km along a pancake-flat course and 20km with 2,000m vertical gain is virtually incomparable. If you have a 20km run scheduled, the easiest way to tick that box is to select the flattest route to get it done as quickly, and with as little effort, as possible. But have you really ticked the box, or have you just cheated?

Read Sean's article Training for uphill trail running, which includes a pace chart for your next mountain race's training.

Sean also answers the question: what about inclined treadmill training as a way to train for hilly races?

No treadmill and no hills in your area? Read 'Train for mountains in flatlands'.


#1: SCARPA Spin Ultra
If you're a runner doing longer distances, and want a cushioned but not stiff shoe, SCARPA has a potential solution for you. The Spin Ultra has a 6mm drop, which helps provide a stable ride. And its upper is built with micro-nubuck and mesh for superior protection on all types of terrain.

The SCARPA Spin Ultra is valued at R3,199, and available in four colourways.

Enter now. A Twitter option has been added since the competition went live on 27 May. More options to follow, so check back on our website.

Note: A small number of people found our post and entered while we were still in test mode and not visible publicly, and these entries were removed when we reset the start date. Please go back to the entry widget and check that you do have your points you accrued.

#2: Bridgedale Trail Run Socks
If you missed this week's Bridgedale giveaway on Facebook, be sure to enter the next one on Monday 27 June. You could be running in four pairs of Bridgedale worth R1,000!

Tune into TRAILza on Facebook every Monday for the freshest Trail Trophies adventures from the TRAIL family.

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