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Joel’s first training week in preparation for the desert marathon was spent running

Joel’s first training week in preparation for the desert marathon was spent running

Street dance pioneer, athlete and entrepreneur Joel Juht plans to participate in the challenging Des Sables desert marathon, already taking place next spring. He is currently undergoing his first training session, as it is time to get things going, and from next week the runner himself will provide an overview.

Joel, your first training session since the decision to take part in the marathon was a three-hour run. How did you endure and how did you feel when you finished?

This run may not have been the brightest idea, as I lacked the people to make me a training program. I know nothing about endurance sports, it’s not dancing. I’ve run a half-marathon and my endurance is relatively good by those standards. But a three hour jog was nice, I got lost in the forest — I figured I’d make the run more interesting, went off course and ended up in a bog. I sank in, struggled out and got back on the track, but the next hour and a half were spent running with wet feet while listening to music. I’m not sure what I was trying to prove, maybe I was wondering how my body would react. I ran keeping my pulse low, tried to go over hills to get my legs used to it, but after two hours fatigue set in. Before the full three hours were over, there was a moment where I wondered whether or not to continue, but I decided to push on until the end. Madis, who is an experienced runner, did long training sessions, but the difference is that I haven’t done any running, I needed time. I ran the three hours and was in a good mood for surpassing myself, but by the evening it was painful just to get out of the car. In the evening I had a bottle of craft beer, said to contain substances which help recovery, and I felt fine by morning. I rubbed my legs with Thai oil when I headed into training. Over the previous week I trained for 8 hours in total and I can say that my body and I are both thinking of what to eat to help with the training.

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What other training exercises have to undergone this first week?

In addition to the three hour run, crossfit for an hour and a half, and a hike in Kõrvemaa. The goal was to get it done calmly, but it got out of hand again. I took on 19 kilometers of course with a five kilogram backpack. I got onto the track at 4:45 PM and was all alone in a pitch black forest, I was given a headlamp which I didn’t even bother lighting, I ran through the dark forest while listening to music and not even glancing behind myself. I ran up and down the hill gritting my teeth, and didn’t even feel the backpack. I got lost for a bit, which added an extra kilometer. I was anxious heading there, but felt good when it was over. I actually didn’t know how heavy my backpack was, I packed it haphazardly. After returning, I put the backpack on a scale in the office and it had over 5 kilograms of stuff in it. So, running, crossfit and hiking. That was my first week.

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