Interview before the utmb® : fernanda maciel

By Fernanda Maciel, ultra trailer

What made you want to take part in the UTMB® this year?

This competition is an unmissable trail event - Mont Blanc is such a magical mountain! I am always happy to return to running, because I meet up with a lot of friends. I am all the happier to come back this year, because it's part of the Ultra Trail World Tour.

How do you prepare for the competition?

I work on five different areas: physical form, mental attitude, nutrition (before, during and after the event), knowledge of the terrain, and equipment. In terms of mental preparation, I distinguish between three stages during the race that I have to prepare for: managing the physical aspects, the mental aspect (you have to try not to have any negative thoughts during the race), and managing the present moment, which means thinking of nothing apart from going forward.

The UTMB® is different from other races because it is longer. You have to really stack the odds in your favour by working on all these aspects.

What is your aim?

This will be my last event of the season. It will also be the last UTWT competition, so I hope to do well. I also want to enjoy the journey, because each race is a journey. In any case, I will give my all to come out better!

What are you nervous about?

I am actually feeling quite confident! I have never done the UTMB® on the original trail (I was injured last year), so I am very excited about that. But I know the place, and I have run there several times, and what's more, this year, I'll be arriving one month before the event. Since the Ultra Trail on Mont Fuji, where I came 3rd among the women, I know that I can run 100 miles. So, I'm taking on the race with confidence!

How are you going to organise your food supplies (logistics, choice of products)?

I will take as many flavours as possible, whether in the form of bars, gels or drinks, and a mix of both sweet and savoury products. When I'm on an ultra trail, I don't know what I'm going to want to have, so I make sure that I have as much choice as possible for each food point. You pay for everything with ultra trails, so it's essential that you have trust in your products. I know that I will be able to digest OVERSTIM.s products comfortably.

What's your take on the start of this season?

I think I've got the season off to a good start! I finished 3rd, among the women, in the North Face® Transgrancanaria, and on the Ultra Trail on Mount Fuji. For the moment, I'm living from one day to the next. I love running, and I love the ultra trail. But I hope to carry on for years to come!

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