10 THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW TO
COMPLETE THE OMM
As any OMM athletes will tell you there are a few tips that will make things a little easier when taking on the OMM.
OMM regular Johan Guasden has these tips for those planning on competing in this years event.
1. Sandwich bags are better than socks
Ever wondered why everyone has a couple of sandwich bags with them on the OMM? When you reach the overnight camp, these bad-boys will give your feet the much needed dry environment to relax and ‘enjoy’ your well earned rest.
2. Small luxuries make it all better
Whilst weight is always an issue on the OMM, taking some small luxuries with you for the overnight camp make life much more bearable. The extra weight of a tasty treat may well be worth it in the long run, raising dampened spirits at the end of the day.
3. Learn how to pitch and strike your tent
In the inevitable wind and rain, a quick pitch in the evening and strike in the morning can make the all the difference for a nice dry night, and a swift morning get-away.
4. Try different sleeping systems
A good night’s sleep can make all the difference to the second day. Make sure your sleeping system is both warm enough, and doesn’t try to kill you during the night. The maps provided do not provide enough insulation to keep your feet warm!
5. Learn to run with a pack
You need to be fit for the OMM, and this includes carrying weight whilst running. Go for some runs before-hand carrying the kind of weight you would expect for the OMM, and you’ll cope much better both physically and mentally.
6. Control your panic
Try to get out in horrible conditions before the race, with the intention of struggling towards a difficult point with a time limit. Navigation is easy when conditions are nice, but time pressure and uncertainty can cause panic which is only ever counter-productive in a race, especially when the check points are so “easy” to find.
7. Back to back runs
Try and get your legs used to a second day of tough running. It takes a lot to get up the day after 7 hours of running and do it all again, but as with everything, practice makes perfect… or at least makes it easier.
8. Eat like a champ
Mountain Marathons aren’t just about running and navigation. Eating is an important part of OMM events as you’re out on the hills working at maximum effort for hours on end. Try different foods on training runs until you find combinations which will power you through the day(s) without feeling too sick.
9. Using the uphills
No one finds uphills easy, but this can be used to your advantage. Don’t try to run every step as this will just tire you out, and there’s a long way to go. Instead, slow the pace a little, take smaller steps and eat as much as you can without suffocating yourself. It’s much better this way round than trying to shove trail-mix in your face as you fly downhill, or wasting those precious flat sections where you should be moving fast.
10. Enjoy yourself
We’ve saved the most important point until last. OMM events, whilst tough, are all about a good atmosphere and enjoying yourself! Take your time to appreciate your amazing surroundings and fellow competitors; it’s always good craic, and we wouldn’t change it for the world!