TDS 110K 7100M

After not getting through the CCC ballot - My instinct took over and I found myself pressing the transfer button for the TDS......

 I've heard the climbs are more technical and the climb at marathon distance is a bastard...   but just wanted some more advice/ hits/ tips from anyone who has run this race before; in surviving and trying to make the most of this race. 

Lots of trips planned for rougher training ground in the UK....   but any advice greatly welcome....

Whats people opinion on poles and which ones do they reconmend??? 

Any little tips welcome -

Also a little worried about the long night section along the tops at between 2000-2500m - What clothing do you reconmend and how do you think you can prepare the body to go through this event.....  I really want to be one of the 66% ???? that make it to the finishline in one piece! image


  • Join the CCC/UTMB thread, plenty of info in there
  • This is how I found it:

    Things to be aware of; I did IronMan UK 3 and a bit weeks before it, this probably wasn't the greatest of ideas, I felt mostly OK through it but everyone I mentioned it to thought I was nuts; perhaps some of my later fatigue was due to that?

     Get used to running at night and on uneven terrain underfoot. There are a few river crossings that are basically planks over small streams; don't think, just do.

     I didn't have poles and I was envious of those who used them properly, those who just carried them and tried to take my eye out were quite different.

    I was fine going up hill, even when I was struggling over the last section from Les Contamines on the up I was passing people but they would come past on the descents because my quads were trashed, I think being ok on the ups was from cycling a lot, it's a similar movement, but lack of training was a shocker on the descents.

    Pace well! I was hoping for 24 hours, because I went off at that pace and was finding it easy by 18 hours in I was in bits and took 12 hours to get in from there. My splits make for sad reading!

    Any questions, PM me here, or if I don't respond, get someone to poke me over on TriTalk.

    Have fun. It's a great event, I'll certainly be back

  • Hi Prue,

    I did it last year.. and finished

    Yes, the climbs are massive, more technical than UTMB. Like utmb on steroids is how i described it.
    HILLs, hills hills and more hills is prob your best training plan for TDS. Ascents are massive, but the descents go on forever, so be careful, dont burn out by Bourg (as i nearly did). Take care of the quads, they can be destroyed on the downs.
    Was very hot last year, dehydration was the problem, it was about 26-28 deg through the day, maybe 20 at night which was lovely. and warm breeze. But generally (i done utmb 3 times) night sections require a long sleeve top , maybe a windproof also.

    I carry poles, some do, some dont. I use Mountain King Trail Blaze.

    Watch out for the col de Tricolet? cant remember exact name, but its after Contamines, towards the end. doesnt look much on the profile, but has to be the steepest climb on the whole course, wiped a few out.

    If you need more info, ask away!

    Good luck, its a fantastic race. Its much wilder than UTMB, and very rerwarding to finish.

  • Ah thanx for the replies guys image And well done on Finishing!  - maybe dropping you a few lines over the next 8 months!

    Iain - You're blog was a great read - I think I'm going to refer back to that a few times leading up to my trip and through training.

    Mark - Thanks for the advice, will have a google of those poles as have decided to get some. And once I've got the route in my head a little more might be asking for a little more advice, its good to know the low spots to try and mentally prepare yourself before hand.  Thanks!

    What type of training did you guys do?  Looks like Iain you built up lots of quad strength through biking?  I love the hills at heart so that type of training is always inspiring for me image  Though we don't really have the same type of mountain terrain, did you just do massive days out on the hills gaining lots of ascent? With back to back training?

    I know when I've spoke to people training for things like the Bob graham round that they look at about 10'000feet + a week in climbs as a guide? With lots of advice of back to back training getting use to running on knackered legs?

    Lirish - Cool, will have a ganda at the UTMB/CCC thread too image

  • Good luck Prue, I did the CCC last year and it was by far the best race I've done so far, the whole experience of being in chamonix for the week was incredible, brilliant atmosphere. You'll have a fantastic time
  • Just bringing this thread back up to date, after the hack.

  • For anyone who's done the event in the past, I thought the following might be of interest; I was skiing around the Col du Petit St. Bernard last week and took the following on Saturday 10th March:

    This is where the Col's aid station/checkpoint is, there's a small building in the pile of snow at the left of the image, which is where the portaloos were, and where I had my first pee of the event. Too much detail? Yes, probably, but was more a reference to how lack of attention left me dehydrated.

    The following picture is taken a bit after the above, down past the hospice, just past over the road, my parents were sat there taking photos giving a cheer:

    And the from slightly lower down the valley in the winter (you can see the same oddly tall post)

  • Hi, also doing TDS this year so reading this with interest:

    mark777 wrote (see)
    Was very hot last year, dehydration was the problem, it was about 26-28 deg through the day, maybe 20 at night which was lovely. and warm breeze. But generally (i done utmb 3 times) night sections require a long sleeve top , maybe a windproof also.

    I had a go at UTMB last year and in contrast to 20 at night, just a day later and after a bit of a storm it felt much colder than this at high levels. Going up Col de Bonhomme I was in 3 layers at times (rare for me) and cold enough for snow above 2000m (plenty of it both fallen and falling).

    Training-wise for me its good mileage, long trail runs (just done Hardmoors 55 this weekend) and I hope to get the really hilly training in by doing a few lakeland fell runs. Can't think how else to get big descents and climbs into training without repping (which I don't want to be doing all of the time) as I'm from a relatively flat area, no climbs over about 300ft in immediate area.

  • Bit of a science or personal opinion question (also asked on a UTMB/CCC thread by me). Any thoughts from those who've maybe done more than one of the UTMB/CCC/TDS events on if its worth getting there more than two days early to aclimatise a bit to the height, heat, etc....? E.g. get a bit used to being up at 1000m generally in Chamonix and pop up and down the mountains in cable cars to get used to higher heights?

    I arrived last in Cham last year the evening before, so in theory should have been in town less than 24hours before UTMB started, had the start not been delayed. I certainly seemed to suffer on second climb to Col du Bonhomme; headache, a bit clumsy, suprisingly sleepy. Generally very hard work - which I expected for such a big climb, but I wondered at the time if altitude (over 2400m) was causing some of this? I've hardly ever spent any time at altitude, highest I'd been in a run/walk before was about 3000ft in Lakes and thats not often. oddly I was fine on the next climb to Col de la Seigne.

    I was thinking of arriving Tuesday afternoon before TDS start on Thursday morning. But, I am also considering arriving a day earlier, if this had any perceived benefit? or maybe it'll just be another day to walk around adding to nerves? I'm interested in anyones opinions on approaches they've used and how it refelected on their event.

  • May sound an odd question from somebody who did a bit of UTMB last year, but what is the food like on this?

    Only asking as I've looked at the 2012 guide, which appeared the other day and just occured to me that there is no 'hot food' stop on route. E.g. UTMB has Les Chapieux, Courmayeur and Champex marked with the knife and fork for a hot dish (I remember pasta at Courmayeur last year and I think soup at Les Chap). There is no such 'Knife and fork' sign on any checkpoint on TDS course map - only a mention on p6 "refreshments" about Cormet de Roselend having a more substantial soup. It also says that in same bit for Les Chap.

    So would I be right to prepare myself and carry food/drink based on assumption:

    1. same good quality choice of drinks, bars, cakes, choc, fruit, biscuits, cheese, salami, bread, etc.. as at major CP on UTMB. Drinks at minor CP.
    2. more substantial food 'at least' at Cormet de Roselend (60k).

    On a more general note, how's training for this going for anyone out there. I'm starting to think I may be one of only a few brits in TDS as not finiding much discussion of this on here or fellrunner forums.

  • There are some fairly patchy bits of my memory from this, but I don't remember there being any pasta as you mention there being on the UTMB.

    There was soup, I don't remember it being present before the Col du Petit St. Bernard, but it was at every proper aid station after that, and was my saviour! It was a kind of chicken noodle affair, which isn't a soup I've eaten since!

  • haha, sounds good and I'm sure I'll be off it for life after this too if that's the case

  • image image  Injury has stuck!  And looks like I'm out....  Gutted is not the word.. ! And hating not being able to train image....  Will be thinking of you all, and trying to get qualifiying points again for the ccc.

    Keep us posted on your adventures and your chicken noodle cravings, hoping to stil go out and support as its all booked.  So looking forward to supporting from the side lines if nowt else image!

  • Gutted for you Prue, I know if happened to me before this I would be with so much work done to train for. Keep smiling though and fingers crossed by time your out there during the event you'll be back in some sort of training and can run some of the fantastic mountain trails as well as enjoying the amazing atmosphere!

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