sorry if don't post in the right section

i'm not new in forefoot strike running, but just recently begun running ultra trails .

i have a 80K scheduled in may in south of france, were i live, with aproximatively 3000 meters D+, and i'm also considering doing another 80K in september in the mountain, with a bit more D+.

i can't make up my mind on using poles for long runs or not.

i've never used them, nor trained with, and i'm rather inclined on running with minimal gear.

but here in france, many runners consider that poles improve their perfomances and help reducing muscle fatigue during long runs with long up and down-hills.

 do you have an opinion an advices on this issue?



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Hi Geoffroy - great question here, and great also to hear you are into the ultras.

I coach many runners who race the Europe/France mountain circuit and many of them use poles for your style of mountains.

As a coach AND runner, I have also found that it is just a much a personal preference than anything.  I do not like to use them personally for all of the reasons you mentioned.  

I think you should try them and decide for yourself.  80K might not be far enough to need them.  For example, I have an ultra runner who doesn't use them normally, but last year did Tor De Geants and we decided to use them for this race, due to the distance of 200+ miles and the hiking requirements.

So I definitely think they have their place, you just need to decide when they are best for you.  

Keep us posted, as I am sure many will be interested in following what you decide.


hi eric, thank you for your answer

for my next course in may, i think i will try without poles.

if things go wrong, espicially if i find the hiking sections too hard, i will further train with poles and try them on another course.

Sounds good. Be sure to train the downhills. They are just as important as training uphills. Downhills are your opportunity to make up time.

Keep us posted.


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