Part 2 of our Scott Snowdonia Trail Marathon tips and advice comes from legendary trail runner and Scott Sports athlete Jo Meek. Jo was the fastest female around the course in 2017, and ninth fastest overall.
Training for Scott Snowdonia Trail Marathon
You are training for a marathon so just because it’s off road doesn’t make it any easier. Sorry! But that’s the challenge right?
In fact it means you need to incorporate a few more hills into your training. Firstly choose a programme you know you can follow probably based on how many times a week you can fit a run in. They are usually about 12 weeks long and should see you build up gradually increasing your training by about 10% a week (miles or time). This depends on what running you are already doing. It should incorporate running a longer run each week with the longest run being about 22 miles but programmes vary.
It should also include some interval work which involves faster running and rest periods. Specifically in relation to this marathon you may want to include an off road run and/ or some practise run up and down hills.
Training should be fun, sometimes it’s a chore and hard work but it’s always rewarding. Embrace it and visualise your goal of finishing the SCOTT Snowdonia Trail Marathon!
What to Expect
It’s an uphill start so you are fairly tested from the beginning and you ascend Snowdon right at the end. It’s a beautiful course incorporating a full mix of trails, road, grass and mud. The weather is variable to expect it to be at it’s worse and then it can only be better.
You’ll be running for a long time. In the timeframe you’ll go through good times and bad times but everyone goes through the same feelings so don’t think it’s just you. Expect to feel exhilarated! Although probably not until the end!
Shoes: Make sure you’ve run in the trainers you plan to race in. This is essential to ensure you’re comfortable in them and that they fit properly when running on different terrains and with wet feet.
Pack: The pack needs to be comfortable too. You don’t want it to bump around on your back so adjust it accordingly. Your water can be carried in soft flasks, water bottles or camelback bladders. Find what works with you and practise using it.
Rain coat: Waterproof and also light. You want to be kept dry but you don’t want it to be so thick you sweat and then get cold.
Energy: You may need to experiment with what energy products work for you. There are options of powders that you can dissolve in water, gels, bars and of course real food. Try taking in some energy every 45mins on a training run and see how it makes you feel and how well it sits in your stomach. Everyone is different.
Once you’ve signed up. Get training and get prepared for this epic race. Enjoy!
Jo Meek is Scott Sports sponsored athlete. She completed the notorious Marathon des Sables 22nd overall in 2013 (the highest placed British female ever), as well as winning gold for Team GB in the 2014 IAU 100km World Championships. Jo finished the 2017 Scott Snowdonia Trail Marathon as first placed female (ninth overall!!) with a time of 04:10:36.