Challenge July 2020: My First 50-Miler
Route covering 50 miles, most of them alongside the Mauerweg

11:25:56. It was brutal.


Route covering 50 miles, most of them alongside the Mauerweg

Until July of 2020, my longest consecutive run had been 54 km. It felt natural that the next challenge would be a 50-miler (80.46 km). And thanks to the pandemic, I had to come up with my own race.

I chose the southern part of the Mauerweg, a bike and hiking path following the Berlin Wall. This path is ideal for running because it is in the middle of the forest, far away from traffic lights and crowds.


Painful muscle cramps at the finish line

The run was very successful (in the sense that I did not die). About 80% of it went according to plan. The following are three points to repeat in the future:

Cumulative Mileage

Before the run, I had completed Phase I of Eric Orton’s Foundation Program. The workouts allowed me to maintain a weekly running mileage of about 80 km. This helped me being able to finish my first 50-miler without injuries.

Vitamin M(usic)

When I bunked at km 45, I put my earphones on and played my ultrarunning playlist. The fast beats gave me a much-needed boost and helped me keep going. It also took my mind off the pain for a while.


While reading a reddit threat on ultrarunning foods, I came across someone mentioning alcohol-free beer as a good snack at aid-stations. So, I put a cold one in my second drop bag, at 59 km. It felt glorious!

Running an ultra takes you to dark places. But those dark places are the reason why crossing the finish line feels so euphoric. This was a great experience that leaves me looking forward to the next challenge.

Challenge July 2020: My First 50-Miler
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The Foundation Program

My experience following Eric Orton’s running plan, the Foundation Program

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Running in the Tatras

I insist, the color of the trail marker has nothing to do with the trail's difficulty!

Challenge July 2020: My First 50-Miler