Stay in touch

Resting my legs for Rovertsche Leij Trail

No running today, no cross training, no core work, just some Yin yoga. Today is mainly a day of resting my legs. Tomorrow I will run the Rovertsche Leij Trail in Poppel, just over the border in Belgium. Well, over the border and back, because Poppel is so close to the Netherlands, that we will run as well in Belgium as in the Netherlands.

I wasn’t really planning to run this trail. It’s a bit of a last minute, spontaneous idea. Sunday generally is my long run day. I sneak out of bed early, ride to a forest and run. Just me and the birds and deer. Nobody else.


However, I wanted to catch up with my friend Mark, before we leave for Scotland next week. Mark lives in Tilburg, which is close to Poppel. So, I thought about combining the long run with visiting Mark. And as the Rovertsche Leij Trail is tomorrow, I can combine all three.

See, this trail was on my to do list. Just for next year, instead of this year. It is part of the Brabantse Trail Serie and next year I was hoping to run all 4 races: the Ooievaarstrail, the Smokkelaarstrail, the Alphense Bergen Trail and the Rovertsche Leij Trail.

New record?

I only decided Thursday evening to run this trail, because my legs felt pretty good, and especially my ankles feel good again. The trail offers different distances: 10, 15, 21 and 25 kilometers. I’ll do 21. Long, but not too long.

The last 21 kilometers trail I did, was the Leenderbos Trail. Although, it was supposed to be 21, but it actually was 23,5. Anyway, during that race I ran the first 21 kilometers in 2 hours, 9 minutes and 3 seconds. Tomorrow I want to be faster, that’s why today I’m resting my legs.

Easy pace or nice pace

All the trails I’ve run up until now, I have chosen to start slow. I like to keep my heart rate under 150 for three quarters of the race. After that, I allow myself to run faster. A low heart rate is in training terms an easy pace, but an easy pace doesn’t always feel like a nice pace.

I remember when I was running the Veluwezoom Trail in July, earlier this year. Halfway through the 19 kilometers I sent a message to Sara that my legs weren’t feeling good, and that I expected to arrive later than planned. After kilometer 12 I allowed myself to run a nice pace. I felt like flying. Suddenly I had energy and my legs felt great.

So easy, isn’t always nice. With 3 weeks to go to the Three Mealls Trail race in Scotland, I think I can allow myself tomorrow to run nice.

Related Columns

Sign up for more Training Tips & Tricks

Newsletter signup

Please wait..

Yeah, you signed up! Now, you'll get the best training tips and greatest gear reviews straight in your inbox. The only thing you have to do yourself, is keep on running.

Latest posts

UTMB heads for Mauritius and raises prize money

This weekend, June 22-23, 2024 the UTMB athletes will meet in Mauritius, to race each in the heart of the Indian Ocean.

Running an ultra trail race on cupcakes

Let's talk about something yummy and nutritious. Let's talk about running an ultra marathon on cupcakes.

Grand Trail du Saint-Jacques; my first DNF

What was meant to be a confirmation, became a question mark. A story about my first DNF, at the Trail du Saint-Jacques.

Court and Deruaz win Ultra Trail du Saint-Jacques 2024

Sylvain Court and Maëlle Deruaz (both France) have won the Ultra Trail du Saint-Jacques 2024.

Hartmuth and Garner win Trail 100 Andorra 2024

Katharina Hartmuth (Germany) and Zachary Garner (US) have won the Trail 100 Andorra 2024.

Andorra and Saint-Jacques; a double UTMB weekend

It’s UTMB World Series time, with the Trail 100 Andorra and the Trail du Saint-Jacques. We will run the last one.