Presentation of the My Road to Ultra project by Vibram – iRunFar
The Vibram brand has long been a leader in creating high performance rubber soles for all kinds of adventurous activities, including trail running. Over the next five months, the company will expand its support and development to the trail running community with the My Road to Ultra project to help a select group of trail runners train and run their first ultramarathon.
Read on to find out how you can apply to be a part of this project.
Presentation of Vibram’s My Road to Ultra project
Vibram is an Italian company, and while it certainly has a global reach, the brand is looking to connect more with the North American trail running community. If you are a trail runner between the ages of 21 and 35, are not sponsored by a shoe or clothing brand, and have not yet run an ultramarathon, this coaching program may be for you. for you !
Vibram will select a number of athletes to participate based on their running background, current and future goals, as well as their communication skills and social media presence. These selected runners will team up with athlete Vibram, premier ultrarunner and trainer Stefano Ruzza to train for their first ultra, the Behind the Rocks Ultra 50k or 50 Mile in Moab, Utah, the weekend of March 26, 2022.
Runners will receive four months of virtual coaching from Ruzza in preparation for the race, as well as Vibram-soled shoes and clothing. Along the way, participants will document their training journey via photos, videos and first-person stories. After the race, Vibram will produce a short documentary film presenting the process.
The ideal candidate is a runner of all abilities, who is a good verbal and visual communicator, and who is excited about the community and the prospect of sharing the ups and downs of training for their first ultramarathon.
Who and what is Vibram?
Founded in 1937, Vibram began producing shoes for the mountaineering community. While the brand leads the minimalist shoe market with its FiveFingers shoe launched in 2002, Vibram also works with other brands like Hoka One One, New Balance, Arc’teryx, and more – most of the major brands. trail running shoes – to develop outer soles. for all kinds of trail running shoes. As Vibram produces over 40 million soles per year sold in 120 countries with at least 1000 partnerships, it is highly likely that you have worn a shoe with a Vibram sole.
Over the past eight years, Vibram has extended and specified their outsoles, creating the Megagrip, Arcticgrip and Litebase soles so you can do your best on slippery, icy and technical terrains.
Environmental responsibility is also of the utmost importance to Vibram. The brand has long encouraged its athletes to “fix it if you care” instead of buying new products. Vibram has long measured and worked to reduce its impact, and its six sustainability pillars (stakeholders, no waste, energy, supply chain, organization and procedures, and product innovation) contribute to the United Nations 2030 Agenda. for sustainable development.
In the My Road to Ultra program, Vibram is looking for athletes who share the same values and the same commitment to excellence.
Meet Coach Stefano Ruzza
One of these athletes who is already a member of the Vibram team is Stefano Ruzza, coach of the My Road to Ultra project.
Ruzza was born in Italy and grew up with an active outdoor lifestyle that ultimately led him to the mountains. While he now resides in Baltimore, Maryland with his wife, he returns to Italy frequently (when travel permits) to train and maintain his mountain running skills on the lookout in the mountains there. low.
Ruzza started his trail running career in 2004, balancing a “rocker life” with a successful career on other types of rocks. He raced his first ultra in 2010, and after steadily climbing the ultra rankings, he joined the Vibram athletic team in 2013. Since then, Ruzza has performed well in top ultras around the world.
Some of his best accomplishments over the years have included seventh place in the 2014 Diagonal of Fools and seventh in 2018 UTMB. While Ruzza has competed in races of up to 100 miles, his preferred distances are between 50 and 120 kilometers, making him the perfect trainer to guide runners on their route to their first 50 km.
Ruzza has written two books, the most recent of which was written during the pandemic. Ultranormal talks about his life and his vision for the sport of ultrarunning. Training a new generation of ultrarunners seems like the natural next step.
What does Behind the Rocks Ultra look like?
The Behind Ultra Rocks 50k and 50 Mile is a gem of an event that takes place just outside of Moab, Utah, in and around the Behind the Rocks Wilderness Study Area. Participants are treated to views of secluded desert landscapes, including sandstone domes and fins, as they skirt both red slickrocks as well as hard, sandy trails. The race takes place in the shadow of the La Sal Mountains, which rise some 8,000 vertical feet above the desert floor.
The 50km course offers 3,500 feet of elevation gain and 7,000 feet of climb in the 50 mile, creating courses difficult enough for experienced runners, but with just the right amount of green for new ultrarunners to avoid them. overwhelm.
Managed by Mad Moose Events, an event company whose races are known for their family atmosphere, Behind the Rocks Ultra welcomes runners, friends and family to spend the weekend! There is free camping near the start, before and after the finish, so participants can feel comfortable before the race – and they can celebrate and relax afterwards. Four different races take place over the weekend, so participants can mingle with runners of all skill levels.
How to apply for Vibram’s My Road to Ultra project
Applications for the My Road to Ultra by Vibram project are open from November 1 to 22, 2021.
The chosen athletes will be announced on December 1, 2021 and virtual coaching will begin immediately.
If you are an athlete hoping to run your first ultra next spring and meet the above requirements, you should apply! Click on the My Road to Ultra app site to start.
[Editor’s Note: This article is sponsored by Vibram.]