Elite Q&A – Louise Clifton

Are you able to train these days? What do you do?


I have been able to train pretty much as normal except no gym and no running buddies. Running alone and avoiding when the trail might have other people or choosing more remote or wide paths, easier to social distance when passing people. Also I have been taking hand sanitiser for if I have to touch handrails. But I think it will get stricter here very soon and then I will just run around the small village I live in – there are hills and some trails so I will make it work. If the time outside is restricted I will also use a bike on my deck with a trainer for extra kms! I do yoga videos at home and I have a weight training workout I am doing at home as gyms are closed.



When daily life will return to normal, what will be your next destination to race?


My first 4 races of 2020 were all cancelled, some due to fires and floods in Australia then COVID-19. Hopefully UTMB will be my first big race if it goes ahead. If not then London marathon, which was postponed until October – I am running in the Abbott Marathon Majors world masters marathon championship in my hometown of London. I will try to do two UTWT races in 2020 still.



What music do you like to listen to during a race? Why?


I never listen to music in a race as I like to concentrate on the race! I listen to music on commute or easy runs if it is a trail I run a lot and I am a little bored – usually electronic dance music.



What’s the first thing you like to do after a race?


Sit down first! Then get to a shower or a hot bath. I find it hard to eat after a race but I will always eat something as soon as I am ready – but not a burger as I am vegetarian! Definitely a cold beer but not straightaway, later with food. Lots of water. Sleep would be good but I find this difficult after a race.



What’s your best memories on the UTWT circuit?


So many! Amazing mountains, people cheering and cow bells at Eiger and Lavaredo. A Japanese couple playing music on top of a mountain at Mount Fuji. Managing to go from 3rd to 4th to 2nd at UTMF – the trophy made from 1,000 year old ancient and sacred wood with my name in calligraphy – beautiful and deeply special. Ultra Trail Cappadocia: the incredible hospitality and beautiful people, and a race beyond my wildest dreams. Actually UTWT has filled my life with incredible, as well as challenging, moments over the past three years. Thank you!

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