Thursday, August 5, 2021


Day in the life: Marathon des Sables champion Ragna Debats

I started trail running by coincidence.

I stopped training horses and two years later started runni..

By Sunday Herald Team , in Sports , at April 30, 2019

I started trail running by coincidence.

I stopped training horses and two years later started running because, just like riding horses, I liked the feeling of freedom it gave me.

I love the mountains and forest around where I live in Terrassa, near Barcelona, and in three minutes from my house I can be off-road and in my element.

I train every day. I like exhausting myself and I find the feeling of tiredness satisfying, although juggling the workload around home life can be difficult.

Read more: Day in the life: Jo Pavey on training for a sixth Olympics as a busy mum

Alongside looking after my four-year-old daughter and doing normal chores I fit in two training sessions every day.

The fact my husband, Pere Aurell, is also an ultra runner helps, but we dont often train together because of our differences – hes strong and Im fast, so I work with my coach Rafa Flores to focus on what I need to do to improve.

I get up early each morning, drink coffee and have a snack – usually an energy bar, protein shake or cereal with almond milk – before heading out around 7am.

People think that because I compete in races like the 250km Marathon des Sables I cover a lot of distance, but in fact my training varies a lot. I dont count weekly distance because its not important.

I often do interval sessions of hill sprints, which are around 20 seconds of intense exercise but will only cover a few kilometres altogether. If I run a flatter route I might do 12 or 13km in 45 minutes.

Even if Im preparing for an 80km ultra, Ill do hill sprints, because for me its all about building up strength.

Ragna Debats finished 12th overall and two hours, 43 minutes ahead of her nearest female competitor (Source: Marta Bacardit (@marta_bacardit_photography))

Once home Ill do some core training before helping my daughter get ready for school. I like to have a four-to-six hour gap between sessions, so in the interim I take care of any washing, cleaning or work to do with sponsors.

Its important to leave a two-hour gap between lunch and the second session. I never eat fried food, which is harder to digest, and keep things healthy, gluten-free and as simple as possible with a balance between carbohydrates and protein.

My second session of the day depends on my training plan. Sometimes Ill do intervals, sometimes Ill go road cycling, which is good, low impact way to volume train.

Depending on what race I have on the horizon Ill also do more specific training, like using an indoor incline trainer, or wearing a hypoxic mask.

I usually Read More – Source

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Day in the life: Marathon des Sables champion Ragna Debats

I started trail running by coincidence.

I stopped training horses and two years later started runni..

By Sunday Herald Team , in Sports , at April 30, 2019

I started trail running by coincidence.

I stopped training horses and two years later started running because, just like riding horses, I liked the feeling of freedom it gave me.

I love the mountains and forest around where I live in Terrassa, near Barcelona, and in three minutes from my house I can be off-road and in my element.

I train every day. I like exhausting myself and I find the feeling of tiredness satisfying, although juggling the workload around home life can be difficult.

Read more: Day in the life: Jo Pavey on training for a sixth Olympics as a busy mum

Alongside looking after my four-year-old daughter and doing normal chores I fit in two training sessions every day.

The fact my husband, Pere Aurell, is also an ultra runner helps, but we dont often train together because of our differences – hes strong and Im fast, so I work with my coach Rafa Flores to focus on what I need to do to improve.

I get up early each morning, drink coffee and have a snack – usually an energy bar, protein shake or cereal with almond milk – before heading out around 7am.

People think that because I compete in races like the 250km Marathon des Sables I cover a lot of distance, but in fact my training varies a lot. I dont count weekly distance because its not important.

I often do interval sessions of hill sprints, which are around 20 seconds of intense exercise but will only cover a few kilometres altogether. If I run a flatter route I might do 12 or 13km in 45 minutes. (more…)

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