10 Reasons Trail Running is AWESOME

The just completed 3rd and final leg of the Nature’s Trail Discovery Run (NTDR) was on January 11th in the amazingly beautiful Sierra Madre mountains.

The following NTDR III Trilogy Final Trail Running Race Report is to highlight the absolute beauty of the trail, the camaraderie and friendships that are enhanced during this unique challenge and highlight some awesome experiences that await those brave enough to step up to the trail running challenge.

10 Reasons Trail Running is AWESOME

1. Awesome Scenery:

I will let the pictures speak for themselves.

Sierra Madre trail running2

Sierra Madre trail running6

2. Funny Sights

I am sure I was not the only one who took a second look at the male trail runner in a dress! Cool. Definitely he could feel the wonderful early morning breeze if he ran commando!

Sierra Madre trail running11

3. Refreshing River Crossings

Sierra Madre trail running1

Robinson Andres and Natasha Davis loved the refreshing feel of the water in their shoes. Retzel Orquiza collected a little leach on the trail and only discovered it when he took off his bloody socks!

4. Awesome Diversity of Nationalities

We were as one on the mountain. Nationality, social status, wealth, religion etc. does not matter. We were brought together for our love of nature and competing. Some of the nationalities included Filipinos, Aussies, Danes, Brits, Indians, Frenchies, Chilean and many more. We were a diverse bunch united in nature and loving it.

5. Awesomely Frightening Descents

I spoke to a lot of trail runners and all expressed their concern with the fast and slippery descent as you can see from the picture below. This is the portion where most people slid down bum first desperately trying to grab hold of the reeds to stop a super fast decline. Imagine this dangerous descent at 5:30am when all around is completely dark!

Sierra Madre trail running4

6. Awesome Mistakes

The strongest runner in the 21km field came in 8th! Jose Layones aka Runnerrider Joemannejhie experienced a discouraging moment where he realized he took a wrong turn and ran an additional 4km. His initial reaction was “I am too far away from them” and he lost his mojo. However, like a true champion that he is, with no one to be blamed but himself, he finished strongly and ultimately won the Trilogy Championship for the combined 3 NTDR 21km events. Congrats Jose for showing such honesty and fighting qualities.

Nature's Trail Discovery Run III 1 Jose Leones

7. Awesome Family, Dad and Youngest 21km Competitor

The family that trail runs together stays together! The Soenen family were out in strength with Anna, Cassandra, Antonin and Cyrille all enjoying their experience on the mountain. Antonin was the youngest finisher of a 21km trail run at the tender age of 15. Great job Antonin.

Trail running family

Cyrille’s first trail run was a great adventure for him (read about his Losing My Trail Running Virginity Report here) but ended in a disappointing Did Not Finish due to the extremely difficult conditions of the NTDR II.

However, like a true champ that he is, he returned to conquer the mountain. Well done Chef Cyrille.

Sierra Madre trail running10

8. Awesome Feats of Endurance

My 21km was tough and has taken a full 4 days to recover from. It is even harder than a 42.2km marathon and takes longer to recover from than even a full Ironman event. Doing Inversion at the local park helped my back recover after the grueling event.

Inversion - Chad

How about Adolfo from Chile finishing first in the 50km event and first for the overall trilogy. Well done mate. The Philippines will miss you when you return to Chile.

NTDR Adolfo

9. Awesome Friendships

On the mountain friendships are forged and enhanced. We rely on each other for advice, shared drinks, encouragement and an uplifting smile and hello. This is what makes the beauty around us even brighter.

10. Awesome to Simply Finish

Kudos to anyone who started this tough race that begins before even the sun arises! Not all finished but most did. The thrill and self satisfaction of hitting the finish line is priceless.

Sierra Madre trail running12

I was delighted to start the year with a second placing in just under 3 and a half hours. Like one of my trail/ultra running idols Timothy Olson (pictured below) I did the race LCHF (low carb, high fat) with just 1 water bottle. Even with a 122km bike ride the day before I felt strong right till the end and was able to pass at least 5 other trail runners (including my good pal Retzel) after the half way mark.



Masters 50k Ultra Trilogy Champion – TR Eberlein Adolfo (Chile)
Seasoned 21k (Men) Trilogy Champion – TR Jose Layones (PH)
Seasoned 21k (Women) Trilogy Champion – Joanne Plumbly (Britain)
Advanced 10k (Men) Trilogy Champion – TR Marvin Lacsa (PH)
Advanced 10k (Women) Trilogy Champion – TR Rosemarie Beltran (PH)

What’s Next

1. Race Director Alvin Balderama aka Holistic Runner will have a new Tanay trail adventure in May 2015 in Rizal. We will keep you posted.

Alvin trail running

2. For the ultra adventurous you might like to try Ultra Fiord in Patagonia, Chile. Check out this amazing youtube video here.

See you on the trail.

5 thoughts on “10 Reasons Trail Running is AWESOME”

    1. Dear Ignace, Thanks a lot mate. Thanks too for featuring this article on your cool site.
      I enjoyed reading the breathing article. Definitely very important when running to breathe properly.
      Cheers, Chad.

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