Skåla Opp Race Report
20th edition. Last edition. A 8 kilometer run with 1800m+ of elevation From Loen in Norway. A very popular and prestigious race.
Linas’ strength is up. Mine is downhill. I encouraged Lina to believe in herself. (Even though she has been winning several uphill races this year, as Schlegeis3000vk and Peak Performance Vertical K, she still doubts on herself. I can't believe it!
However. There were over 800 starting in the racing class and unlimited for amateurs who could start whenever they wanted in the morning. We started at 10. Which meant good sleep and normal time breakfast, and also time for running a bit with Kira before we had to leave her in the motorhome during the race.
Both of us felt crap, but excited. Our legs could have been better and lighter, but it was only to accept. When we started, I ran together with some other women the first gravel road upwards and had them around on the trail. But I felt that my focus slowly faded away. My motivation went out the backdoor and I had no time to catch it. I felt heavy on every step and couldn't run where I saw others do, and where I know I normally do if I feel fresh. I was frustrated and unconcentrated. My mind was all over the mountain.
The Torq gel I brought made me a bit more alert. And I enjoyed the trails and the stone stairs and all the people around. But felt ashamed not to perform as I wished. I had stopped counting the women who passed. But I think it was at least 10 in front of me. Lina probably in the lead.
I suddenly thought I heard another woman breath heavily from behind. Not. One. More.
So I slap myself in the face and started all over again. Let’s finish this. Then it also began to be fun again. On a snowfield only maybe 1 or 1.5k to go, my new found friend Johannes and his dog Riley waited to cheer. They followed me from behind, in front and around, shouting and barking. 😆 I had lactic acid all over my body. But I was so grateful for this cheering and it made me both smile and die at the same time. I would have loved to let Riley pull me up.
It was foggy and just white, so I had no idea how long it was to the top. And Hannes kept saying "It's so close", " It's soo close now!" " No one can catch you, no one behind", "now it is really close, I promise"
I felt like an elephant where every step was extremely heavy. But I kind of ran and came to that finish line where I met the real queen of the day. Lina had won! She is outstanding and I'm so proud to be her twin.
On the way down my energy and adrenaline finally appeared and I had so much fun playing down in the valley. Got Kira out of the motorhome for another run and swimming in the magical lake in Loen. The color is unreal!
We had some great time in Norway and are now in France for the UTMB week with Merrell to run the OCC 56 kilometer on Thursday.