Tor des Geants. The Tour of Giants is a 330 kilometre footrace with a total elevation gain of 24,000 meters in the rugged mountains of the Valle D’aosta in Italy. Racing in the shadows of the giants – Mont Blanc, Matterhorn, Mont Rosa and Gran Paradiso – of the Alps is an enticing adventure, if not a romantic notion. And what is life if not an exploration to satisfy our curiosity within. Billed as the world’s toughest endurance race, it is definitely brutal.
The trails aren’t groomed padded earth but a mixture of technical terrain necessitating rock hopping, scree sliding, grass trampling, bridge crossing, water splashing and boulder scrambling. All this takes place either on ascents or descents lasting hours at a time. The single-stage nature of this race combined with the strict cut-off times calls for sleep deprivation as a key strategy. To make the cut offs the average competitor can count on one night’s worth of sleep spread out across six nights. Hallucinations and sleep walking/running are par to course, as is altitude sickness. To call this a stretch would be an understatement.
So, how does one actually prepare for something like this and what does it take to perform in such conditions?
There are three time periods to focus on: the preparatory months leading up to the race, the actual week of racing and the post-race days. And throughout are moments of activity made up of runs, strength work and conditioning exercises as well as periods of inactivity known as rest, recovery and repair. The body is put through extreme stress and an unusual amount of pressure, so it needs all the help it can get to cope. And there is a great deal that needs attending to. These include, and are not limited to, strengthening of tendons and ligaments; oiling of joints and easing of pain; regeneration of muscles and reinvigoration of mental alertness; banishment of fatigue and enhancement of quality rest and sleep.
While rest, recovery and repair are somehow interlinked, there are distinct regimens for each. Yet these are areas that recreational athletes or would-be fitness buffs tend to overlook. In addition typical approaches and traditional products involve a great deal (too much, in my humble opinion) of drugs, chemicals and preservatives. They might provide immediate relief or bursts of energy but general and prolonged use has a less than positive impact on overall health. That’s why I was extremely excited to learn of an alternative that is more holistic, more sustainable and, ultimately, more beneficial.
I have been a Young Living user for over three years and in the past year I have been more meticulous in harnessing their products for the benefit of my physical and mental states when I prepare for, participate in, and recuperate from, long-distance endurance footraces. Through a combination of inhalation, application and consumption processes, I make sure that I am fully prepared to take on the demands of a multi-day race that incorporates a rigorous training program. Its range of oils, supplements and nutritional snacks have formed the cornerstone of my daily health and wellness routine and are essential components of my packing list of mandatory items for any race in any part of the world. The Deep Relief roll-on, for example, has been an absolute Godsend in providing relief to overused joints and sore muscles. It takes pride of place in its special compartment on my rucksack!
By Thaddeus Lawrence
Thaddeus Lawrence is an extreme athlete, self-development coach and Young Living Brand Ambassador. He will be sharing his essential secrets for an integrated approach to your health and fitness at a one-time only workshop on 19 October 2015, Monday, at 7pm at Young Living Singapore’s Office (Bugis Junction Office Towers Level 7). If you want to exercise more, be fitter and enhance your athletic performance the natural way, email your registration now to [email protected] to reserve your place!
About Young Living Singapore Private Limited
Young Living is about health without compromise. Young Living’s pure, potent, natural products provide immediate, effective results without harmful side effects. The Young Living farms and distilleries allow Young Living Essential Oils to maintain its position as the world’s leading grower, distiller, and provider of pure, potent essential oils through the Seed to Seal® process. On Young Living farms, the cultivation, harvesting, and distillation processes of each batch of essential oils are carefully controlled. Extensive laboratory testing and independent audits are conducted to ensure Young Living’s quality exceeds industry standards. Young Living’s extensive experience farming, distilling, and sourcing essential oils guarantees each Young Living oil contains the optimal level of beneficial plant properties.
For more information, call 63910170, visit www.youngliving.com.sg, or visit our walk in office at 230 Victoria Street, Bugis Junction Office Towers, Singapore 188024.