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My favourite moments of 2019

Wednesday, December 18, 2019

I had some memorable moments last year. I got back into running form, hiked the Alps and then some. Also nice to share, right?

Morvan Oxygene Trail

The Morvan Oxygene Trail was going to suck. I already had given up on my goal to run my first ultra marathon, because I got injured a month before. To make things worse I’d had a fever the night before the 30km race.

From the first step I felt I had no energy in my body. Every step was going to be a challenge, especially in these steep Morvan hills.

Bram looking very tired, with a Morvan sunset in the background
Yes. I was tired.

It hurt and it was attractive to step out at so many points, but I’m so proud of not giving up and finishing. I will never forget that hill at 18km, where I screamed & grunted of frustration. The tears no one saw me shed, when 5 kilometers later a farmer sprayed me with cold water. And a bit later on when my friend Stef ran with me, to the foot of the last big climb to the finish.

It was my slowest race ever, it took me more time than the 44km race in 2017. But I f*ing did it!

Parc National de Vanoise

A week after running that race together with Stef. We also went on our first hiking trip together. We planned to hike the Tour de Mont Blanc, as reconaissance for a possible running race or trip there. But since we could only go in july, we decided to evade the expected high season traffic jams.

That’s now we discoverd Parc National de Vanoise. It’s a bit further south than Chamonix and Mont Blanc and it’s just as beautiful. Easy paths through lush green meadows filled with marmots, doable climbs along water fall rainbows and steeper, rocky hand-and-feet climbs. It’s all there.

A lush green alpine mountain view
One of many epic alpine views

Our hike lead around La Grande Motte and La Grand Casse, two epic mountains surrounded only by more mountain ranges. We completed a five day hike in three days (yay for us!), starting from our home base camping ‘La Cascade’. A camping municipale with great tourist information, an excellent little restaurant and the best croissants I had in years!

Next to the place being awesome, I also loved sharing the experience with one of my best friends. Our relationship was test once in a while, but we got out of it better personally and together. Thanks for the good company, Stef! 😘

We hope to return to the Alps next year :) Any tips?

Vlieland

After my beautiful summer break I had a bit of a tough time. I had some injuries so I couldn’t run as much, which made me a bit less energetic. Besides that I just a a tough time in my personal life and in work. After I finished the project I could finally take some time off and spent some time on dutch Wadden island Vlieland.

Vlieland dunes by sunrise
Vlieland magic

The first days I meditated and read by the fireplace, walked and ran on the beach, over the dunes and through the forests. I spent that time thinking and writing to reflect on the year.

The second half I had invited my mom, which was lovely too. She pulled me out of my reflection bubble and helped me to just enjoy the time there.

Vlieland is beautiful and I love that magic moment when you ferry sets sail. An instant holiday feeling, leaving all your worries on the main land for those few days. And whatever happens on the island, it will blow over before you know it. 🤗

And as a grand finale, on my last day I ran one of the best runs in months.

A short video impression of my 'Grand Vlienale' run

Now on to more merry moments in 2020!

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