JustRunLah!: How would you introduce yourself to Asia’s running community?
Fabe: I am Fabe the travel runner and my goal is to run 100 races in 100 different countries. I have already taken part in several races in South East Asia, including winning and setting course records at the 2XU Compression Run 2018, Marina Run 30km 201 and Wings Cross Country 2019.
JustRunLah!: When did you first pick up running (what age) and what inspired you to do so?
Fabe: I first joined my local athletics club Chiltern Harriers (where I’m still a member now) as a middle distance/fun runner and it wasn’t until I graduated university at 22 that I started training more seriously. Part of my motivation was seeing the correlation between increased training and increased success in my performances and realising I could be a successful distance runner if I put in the miles!
JustRunLah!: Do you have a favourite running quote?
Fabe: ‘Go hard or go home!’ But I love many of the quotes from the late, great Steve Prefontaine. My favourite is probably “To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.”
JustRunLah!: Where do you usually train? What is your favourite running route and why?
Fabe: Currently I live in Switzerland and enjoy running in the mountains (when the weather is nice). I try to train on soft surfaces such as grass and footpaths as much as I can in order to protect my legs. When I’m in Singapore I like running around Bedok Reservoir and seeing all the people running there always motivates me to run faster!
JustRunLah!: Do you prefer running in races competitively, or at your own pace and time?
Fabe: I love racing and on average probably do around 50 races a year. Many of these are smaller, local events which I use as a hard training run or a tune up. But I think races are great as they make you push yourself harder than you would in training and means you can meet fellow likeminded people as well as discovering new places. I would recommend everyone supports their smaller local events as they are normally well organised and you get to support your local athletics club or charity. Larger events are good but often a lot more expensive and actually you may well run a faster time at your local 10km where you have a lot more space, freedom and stress-free pre-race preparations.
JustRunLah!: Which is your favourite race and why?
Fabe: My favourite race has to be the Racing Madagascar Stage Race I did last year. This featured 150km over 6 days crossing some amazing and untouched nature as well as a fantastic community atmosphere and superb organisation.
JustRunLah!: What is a moment you will never forget in that race?
Fabe: The Madagascar race featured several river crossings and at one particular deep point, the local runners I was with started throwing rocks in the river to check for crocodiles! Fortunately there were no signs so we waded through quickly!
JustRunLah!: What do you train for now, and how does your 2019 running calendar look like?
Fabe: I’m planning on spending the first 4 months focussing on the road, running several 10ks, half marathons, culminating in the Skopje Marathon. In Summer I will be running on the trails and in the mountains around Europe and after August I hope to be back in South East Asia running in several different countries and finishing the year with the Standard Chartered Marathon in Singapore.
JustRunLah!: Do you have any tips for training and/or race day you want to share with our community?
Fabe: Relax! Just enjoy it and make sure you learn from the experience if you have a bad race. Try to keep everything the same as normal, this includes your bedtime routine, breakfast, warm up etc. In terms of training, different approaches work for different people so try different things and see what works for you, but make sure you enjoy it!
JustRunLah!: Your preferred running brand and some gear that you have constantly been using?
Fabe: I am lucky enough to be sponsored by Salomon and I can honestly recommend them for producing high quality products with top level athletes being involved in the footwear designs. The s-lab sense series is probably my favourite line of shoes. Salomon also has an excellent track record promoting and developing local athletes and events, rather than concentrating solely on world class level athletes with suspicious backgrounds like certain other global sports brands.
JustRunLah!: What would you say is your greatest reward from running yet?
Fabe: For me the greatest reward has been inspiring others, including family and friends to take up running and push themselves. Also the opportunity to see the world and visit some obscure places such as the Faroe Islands is fantastic. The worst award I have got was from a race in Germany where they gave me 2 right-footed shoes!
JustRunLah!: Finish this sentence: Running is …
Fabe: What humans are born to do. Running is also the best way to escape when you don’t have a valid transport ticket.