Enjoy our interview with Athlete Ambassador, Shane Mascarin on his recent finish of the Moab 240 footrace in Utah. You can learn more about the event at www.moab200.com
What is the Moab 240? How did you hear about it?
Moab 240 is a new endurance race part of destination trail race series. It was a 238mile loop starting and ending in Moab, UT going thru the desert and thru two mountain ranges (Abajo and La Sal ranges) with 30,000 feet of gain and 30,000 feet descent. The race cutoff is 112hrs to get the race completed. I had been interesting in the two other 200milers that are part of the destination trail series as I had friends race both the Tahoe 200 and Bigfoot 200 but when I saw the Moab200 (now the Moab240) it got my interest right away. I kicked around the idea with my family and my parents. My mother found the scenery very interesting and after she passed away shortly afterwards from cancer I decided to sign up for the race in her memory.
How do you train up for that kind of mileage?
Good question! I am still not sure I have the right answer. I talked to several veteran racers of 200milers and it seemed everyone had a different answer. But the main theme was to enter healthy and rested. So, I built my race plan that was based on triathlons early in the season and a slow build into trail ultra training. As normally I race an endurance event every month or 2 all race season but get pretty worn-down by the fall. Since this was a fall race I decided not to race or train heavy until late summer. My race/training build included road races in the spring with usual marathon mileage moving into Ironman/ITU Long Crse training into the summer. Once I had completed Ironman Canada and ITU Worlds Long Crse I switched my road running to trail running but kept up my cycling/swimming to keep my cardio up but limit the weight bearing workouts on my body. I did do one 100miler race in September as a long training race but that did not go quite as planned due to smoke/high temps and timed out at 140K. I still took that as a great training run and a solid test to my mental state pushing thru poor race conditions. It also helped with figuring out what did or didn’t work in my training. In the last month I focused mainly on trail work, equipment testing and ensuring quality over quantity of mileage.
How did you fuel? What worked? Didn't work?
The aid stations were about 15-21miles apart so getting hydration and fuelling right was key. As well as daytime temps in the mid-20s to lows in the mtns of -6. The temp swings seemed cause chaos with my stomach at times. My fuelling was good until about mile 30 and did not return until mile 105 (still 133 left though!). Most of my cals came thru fluids with little to no solids during this patch. I was able to use a mixture of Heed and Perpetuem (several flavours) in my drop bags so I could mix my fluid calories during the race. I did find while Perpetuem is ideal for the long stuff I need to mix up my fuelling over such a long distance for taste and texture. I used Heed during the hot parts of the desert as it went down easier when warm. I used Gels early and late in the race for extra calories. They went down good early but when I had stomach issues mid-race almost all solids were not doing well including gels. Hammer Bars were my go to fuel in the last half of the race between aid stations and they went down well and stayed down. I used a mixture of flavours to keep it interesting over 92hrs!! Of course it was an Ultra so the last half of the there was lots soup, burgers, burritos and gummy bears at aid stations!
And what has your recovery been like?
Recovery was great the first day until my body realized it was actually done running and shutdown. I took Recoverite after the race several times (all I had with me) and tried to use the hotel hot tub/pool to loosen up my body. Reality hit on the second and third day as were the worst after race feelings I had felt and was very tough to get caught up with my sleep. I was lucky as my feet are in good shape and each day recovery is getting better as I can move around and do some active recovery. I am hoping massage is in my near future as now 5 days post race I feel much better and ready for one! I have no races remaining on the 2017 schedule so I will taking a few weeks of no running seriously and then slowly build back up. I truly want my body to fully recover before pushing it again.
Thanks for sharing, Shane!