TransAlpine Run 2016 – Stage 5

This is part 8 of a series detailing my experiences travelling to Europe and completing the Gore-tex TransAlpine Run. The TransAlpine Run is a 7-day stage race from southern Germany across Austria and into northern Italy boasting a distance of 250 km and elevation gain of 15000 m. Eight of us traveled there together as Team Ultra Crazy to attempt this huge goal.

I participated in the race in September 2016 but am just finished up the last few posts finally in June 2018. Accuracy is not guaranteed.

Solden to St. Leonhard in Passeier

33.3 km | 1453 m ascent | 2111 m descent | 8 hour cut off

It’s a year and a half since this amazing event and I am embarrassed to say I never finished my series of blog posts. I had basically accepted that I might never complete this task until I was recently contacted by Team RunRun. One of their coaches had been reading my first-hand experiences to provide information to their runners. Their interest renewed my drive to finish this series in the hopes that it can help those already registered for the race or spark an interest in those looking for an epic event to do.

My memory is terrible so these last few posts will be short and sweet. And hopefully accurate, but no promises!

I remember this route was just what we needed after a really tough couple days. It was such a relief. The trails were more runnable, the views were great, and the cutoffs were more obtainable. It felt like a really, really long (let’s face it, it was still 33 km) recovery day.

At some point we crossed the border into northern Italy. The towns had a little different style to them but German was still the popular language. Along the trails were little shrines, especially closer to towns but also in more remote locations.

The downhill near the end as we travelled closer and closer to the finish was simply breathtaking. Towns and houses sat up high on the mountainsides. As I GoPro’d a section through a little town descending rapidly on the windy road, we missed a turn. We were SO lucky that someone behind us saw and called out. Otherwise we would have had an epic hike ahead of us back up the road when we eventually realized.

There was a neat section running on metal structures built into canyon cliffs.

We finished in just over 6 hours.

After probably the most terrifying drive of my life (apparently the lines mean nothing on their super windy, narrow roads), we arrived at our hotel, Gasthof Platterwirt. We were back up in one of the mountain towns and the views were incredible. The food and beer was not bad either!

More in the series:

Athlinks – Claim your results!

I signed up for Athlinks a while back but recently they partnered with BibRave and asked their ambassadors to write a post about their experiences with it.

What is Athlinks?

Athlinks is a free service that allows you to view, save and share finish times through their website Athlinks.com and/or their iOS and Android apps. It also includes a social aspect where you can connect with friends, compete with rivals, discover new races.

My profile & timeline
Check out this awesome race stats page!

Why use Athlinks?

If you have ever wanted to compile a list of your past race results, this is the place to do it. It is super easy and has a clean, user-friendly interface. You can even link upcoming races to your profile, and find out what other runners will be at your events.

Once your account is set up, simply check back in occasionally for new race results. It will usually automatically detect them for you and have them waiting for your approval.

Friends that I'm following
Suggested rivals

How to get get started

  1. Go to Athlinks.com or download their iOS or Android app.
  2. Create an account.
  3. Add an awesome profile photo.
  4. Go through and claim your results.
  5. Sign up for any upcoming races you have on the schedule.
  6. Follow your friends (and me!)
  7. Check out your suggested rivals.
  8. View events near you.
  9. Follow Athlinks on Instagram and Twitter!

How do you keep track of your race results? Do you use Athlinks already?

My new running partner and our Chariot Cougar 1

I have a lot of awesome running buddies but this one is definitely tops the charts (sorry friends)! Baby R has joined me for a few stroller runs now and so far she loves it. Or I assume so because she basically just sleeps the whole time.

It is important to note that its recommended to wait 6 or more months before running with a baby. However, I consulted our doctor, a chiropractor, and an athletic therapist about how to run safely with her at 3.5 months. I’m a very cautious person but I am comfortable with our setup. I’ve made sure her head and neck are stable, we stick to running on smooth surfaces at a leisurely pace, and I keep a close eye on her through our runs. Please do your own research this subject and consult your doctor if you plan to run with your baby.

Before purchasing a running stroller, I polled my Facebook friends and researched models online. There were two clear favourites, the BOB and the Chariot. Based on testimonials and Craigslist ads, both the BOB and the Chariot seem to have very long lifespans and good resale value.

The major pros to the BOB are people love it as a regular stroller and you can switch between fixed or non-fixed front wheel (on some models). The fixed wheel is great for running in straight-ish lines, but I think the non-fixed wheel would be more maneuverable on trails.

What appealed to me about the Chariot is that it sits lower to the ground and is easier to see in and over. It also has built-in mesh and rain covers as well as a sun visor flap. With the mesh cover zipped up, your child’s toys and snacks won’t fly out. Despite being mostly waterproof, it still has a mesh back and some mesh in the sides for air flow (phew!). You can also get bike and even ski attachments for it, however I didn’t want to base my decision on that because I’m not sure that I would use it for those purposes.

My husband and I checked out both strollers in stores, gave them a push around, and decided to go for the Chariot. We made the mistake of looking at new models of Chariots (now made by Thule) at the store. They were amazing but also more expensive than our first car (a lot of things are though – it was only $400 and lasted only slightly longer than you would expect).

I perused Craigslist for a while but when i saw this one posted, we snatched it up right away! It is an older model that was brand new with tags still on it. I felt a bit bad that the reason the previous owner was selling it was that she tore or ACL right after buying it a couple years ago – I also hoped it wasn’t jinxed!

So far I am loving it! The only downside is the attachments are fairly expensive. A friend had given us the bivvy that fits smaller babies and keeps them in a horizontal position. I’ve also already purchased the infant sling and baby support to use as she grows.

Do you have a running stroller? Which one?

How long did you wait before running with your baby?