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Chamonix, here we come

Yes! I am in. I am going to run the CCC, Courmayeur – Champex-Lac – Chamonix, the coolest 100 kilometres ultra run in the world. O, before I forget, it has 6.156 metres of altitude and that’s going to be a problem. But a nice problem.

The registration for the CCC opened up yesterday. There is a lottery to get in. Luckily I’ve got a Charity Bib, so I am guaranteed of my place on the starting line. The only thing I have to do now, is train. Train a lot. More than a lot.

A dream coming true

Running the CCC is a dream come true. A recent dream, I admit. I mean, two years ago, I would have never thought that it would be possible for me to run 100 kilometres. And to be fair, I still have to prove it is. So far, my longest run has been 73 kilometres; the Auge um Auge in Bonn, Germany. And that race had only had 2.800 metres of altitude.

Most of you probably know my story by now. About 20 years ago the doctors told me I would never be able to run again. Two years ago, I gave it a go and for fun ran a 11 kilometres trail run in the Dolomites in Zoldo. My wife, an Italian, spoke with a volunteer, who said I should do the 55k. I only thought: ‘never’.

From zero to 50

Yet, a seed was planted. I was going to turn 50. How cool would it be to run 50+ kilometres, being 50 years old. Further than I ever had run in my youth. So I started to train, and started slowly to increase the distances. I was running. Call it my midlife crisis, call it whatever you want, but I had fun.

And not just fun, I had a new mission. See, trail running, ultra running is a big puzzle. Running is just a part of it. Gear; shoes, running vests, camel bags, soft flasks, gloves, energy bars, energy gels, sports drinks, recovery meals, beanies, watches, it all plays a role. Hack, even the hours you sleep play an important role.

From 50 to 100

I like puzzles, I like challenges, I like science, I like to research, I like the human body, the human mind. So my running turned into an adventurous journey. A hard one, but a fun one. See, hard for me is fun. I like to step out of my comfort zone. That’s how we grow.

June 10 this year I ran the Dolomiti Extreme Trail. It turned out to be 57,5 kilometres and 3.723 metres of altitude. It was horrible, it was beautiful. I laughed, I cursed, I almost cried. I hit the wall so many times during that trail run that I lost count. And yet, yet, at the end of the race there still was some energy in the tank, which made me wonder … Could I run further?

And if so, how far? Hundred kilometres? So one thing led to another. A new challenge, a new dream. The CCC. 37 weeks from now it’s going to happen. Which means I’ve got 37 weeks to get myself in shape. So let’s get started!

Yes! I am in. I am going to run the CCC, Courmayeur - Champex-Lac - Chamonix, the coolest 100k ultra run in the world.

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