Athlete Tips & Testimonials

Are you ready to race 100 miles? Team Montrail athletes share their training secrets.

Sean Meissner's typical training week one month before Western States:

Easy 8 on flat trails or off

AM, Easy 6 on rolling trails; PM, 5 x PBRs (Pilot Butte Repeats) 1 mile hill w/500' vertical

AM, Easy 8; PM, 10 - 15 mile tempo on Peterson Ridge or hilly road loop

Easy 6 on rolling trails; PM, 5 x 1 mile on track at 5:30 - 5:40 pace

Easy 8 on flat trails or off

30 - 35 miles with 9,000' vertical at Smith Rock, or 50k/50mi. race

20 - 25 miles, less hilly but faster tempo on Peterson Ridge or at Badlands

Total 100 - 131 miles

Geoff Roes' Typical Training Week in Preparation for a 50 miler:

-AM: 8 miles flat and mellow (7-8 minute pace).
-PM: one hour of weight training + 5 miles running at 6-7 minute pace.

-13 miles hill running with about 3,000 ft. of gain and 3,000 feet of loss.

-AM: Tempo run. 15 miles: first 5 miles easy; middle 5 at about 5:30 pace; last 5 easy.
-PM: Cross Training - 30-90 minutes of cycling or XC skiing depending on time of year.

-15 miles flat and mellow (7-8 minute pace)

-AM: 8 miles easy and one hour weight training.
-PM: 7 miles hill running with 1,500 ft. of gain and loss + 30-90 minutes of cross training.

-30 miles focusing on good nutrition and hydration throughout run.

-AM: 15 miles very easy (8+ minute pace).
-PM: 30-90 minutes cross training.

Eric Grossman's 10 Tips for Surviving Western States

  1. Acclimatize to heat. One week is likely enough.
  2. Use salt tablets.
  3. Acclimatize to high altitude if possible. One week is not enough.
  4. Arrive rested. The training within three weeks of the run won't help, but it can't hurt.
  5. Embrace the value that Western States represents for you - outside of finishing. Whether it's the camaraderie, the challenge, running in a rugged natural environment, or something else, keep that at the center of your thoughts.
  6. Eat food early in the run. Real food.
  7. Go easy up the first climb.
  8. Have a crew, and have them meet you at Michigan Bluff. You will have just emerged from the toughest part of the course.
  9. Don't over-anticipate the finish. Consider every moment of running a victory.
  10. Submit. "You" cannot transcend brute physics. Prepare as best you can, and then run as best you can.

Product Testimonials

"The Streak is the ideal shoe for racing on trails. It's lightweight, streamlined, and "feels fast" on your feet, but all the while still provides great traction, support, and stability that is so important when running rugged trails."
—Geoff Roes

"I've been using the Streak for almost 2 years now. They are light, flexible, cushy, responsive (not always the case with a cushy shoe), have a great roomy toebox yet hug my midfoot and heel perfectly, and whenever I put them on, I feel fast! Their light weight and cushion make the Streak great for smooth trails and roads, the rubber trail shield protects my foot underneath while still being plenty flexible to roll over rocks and roots, and the outsole's sticky rubber provides great traction on muddy, wet, and dry surfaces. I love my Streaks!"
—Sean Meissner

"I'm impressed with the Wildwood TR. The midsole is clearly flexible, which in other shoes means less underfoot protection. The Wildwoods are designed to disperse the force of pointy rocks while still giving me ample feel for the ground. The Wildwoods are comfortable enough for road running. No trail shoe performance has been traded to achieve this, however. I credit the novel design. The Wildwood will be my go-to shoe for trail runs this spring, including the Western States 100."
— Eric Grossman

"I have nothing but great things to say about the Hardrock 09. Excellent traction in mud, snow, and leaves. I am surprised at how much more flexibilty the Hardrock 09 has compared to the Continental Divide. I expect these will be my 100 mile trail shoe for 2009."
—Annette Bednosky

TIP #1: Nutrition & Shoes

Ultrarunner: Annette Bednosky

  • Favorite race food is Clif bars and gels
  • Footwear of choice is the Hardrock 09

Ultrarunner: Beverley Anderson-Abbs

  • Favorite race food is Sunsweet dried plums
  • Bev's footwear of choice is the CONTINENTAL DIVIDE and ENDURO-SOLES

Ultrarunner: Eric Grossman

  • Favorite race food is apples and cheese
  • Eric's footwear of choice is the Wildwood TR

Goeff Roes

  • Eat and drink small amounts as often as possible. Shoot for 100 calories every 20 minutes and small sips of water every 3-5 minutes.
  • Geoff's trail runner of choice is the Streak

Sean Meissner

  • I eat plain foods like PB&J, potato or banana while running, and drink lots of nuun and water
  • Sean's trail runner of choice is the Streak

Tip #2: Advice to first timers

Ultrarunner: Luanne Park

  • Keep your enthusiasm in check. Cross train. Variety is the spice of life. Smile. Stop and smell the roses. And most importantly, listen to your body. If you want to stay into running for the long haul, like I have, you have got to be smart about it. If you are tired take a day off, or two. Better a few days off than months because of injury, I know this from personal experience.

Ultrarunner: Matt Hart

  • Build your base gradually, but frequently push your limits.

Matt Hart

  • to avoid getting injured, get a coach

Francesa Conte

  • Learn how to eat and drink just like you learned how to run. Nutrition is a HUGE part of ultrarunning

Russell Gill

  • Find a balance within running that keeps you happy, healthy and motivated for a lifetime. Also find a period of time every year to take a break from running

Bev Anderson-Abbs

  • Enjoy yourself and the time you spend on the trails. Don't overdo it, especially when you feel good.

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