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Roberto's Tip: uphill running

Updated: Dec 5, 2021

The routes of the Engadin Ultratrail have such a difference in altitude, which is not to be underestimated: between 791 metres (ET16) and 5,677 metres (EUT102) of ascent and descent. It is therefore worthwhile to start training the relevant muscles.

If you have a hill nearby, try training uphill once a week. Other options are climbing stairs or using a treadmill with adjustable inclination.


Today we will focus on the uphill run, in the next article it will be the turn of the downhill. When running uphill we recommend shortening the pace and pushing with the foot in order to reduce the pressure on the thighs. Help yourself by pushing with your arms as well. The upper part of the body must adapt to the slope of the climb: the steeper the slope, the more the body tilts forward. At this stage of your preparation, it is sufficient to train uphill for a total time of 20-30 minutes per workout. If you only have very short ascents available, you can go up and down the same route several times. Concentrate on the execution of the movement, the speed of the run is not important at this stage.

These movements involve parts of the body that are not used so intensively on level ground. It is therefore important to include foot, leg and trunk exercises once or twice a week in your training, the so-called "running ABC", which also promotes an economical running style. You can find several exercises on Youtube.

An example of a typical training:

  • warm up by running slowly for 5-10 minutes, followed by 10 minutes of running ABC; this is particularly important in the cold season in order to avoid injuries,

  • then run uphill 2 minutes for 10-15 times,

  • and as a break stroll down to the starting point or continue walking uphill for another 2 minutes. In this regard, we recommend that you also train walking: in long-distance running, alternating running and walking allows the recovery of the muscles that are strongly used.

At this stage of your training you can start evaluating your trail shoes and poles - and maybe put them on your Christmas gift list ... We will discuss this topic in a future newsletter.


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