Forty-seven miles and 17,500 feet of climbing and the same going down. The race is called the Transvulcania and is held on La Palma in the Canary Islands each May. Three thousand runners take on one of the toughest races up a volcano followed by the hardest descent in the ultra-running world by covering 11 miles straight down the side of the volcano to the finish. Leg smashing descents and spirit-crushing ascents mixed in with 100-degree weather, breathtaking views and thousands of honed athletes who are all looking for that extra advantage. Scott Forbes has been pushing his body beyond reasonable levels for more than 25 years, and describes simply: “Wow. What a race.” Here he describes how #ITSTHENERVE provided release for the “crippling cramp” he’s lived — and raced — with for many years.
I started out as a professional triathlete with the aim to make it to the Sydney Olympics in 2000 only to miss out due to injury. My next sporting reincarnation was in cross-country mountain biking, and in 2009, I won the national Championships and placed 12th at worlds. In 2012, I was involved in an accident while out training on my bike. I broke my neck in two places, my right kneecap in five places, my left hip and required eight operations to make me walk again. This then led to the sport of ultra running and for the last few years I have been lucky to travel the world racing with lots of success. I won the UK 100km Championships in 2014 and then in 2015, raced Glencoe Skyline, known as the world most technical and dangerous running race. This year I even broke the Guinness World Record for the Fastest Half Marathon in a suit. The race required me to run in a full three-piece suit with shirt, tie, tie clip and a pocket square—very hot but great to get a world record!
This year my secret weapon for tackling Transvulcania was #ITSTHENERVE. I took one bottle 30 minutes before the start. A few hours into the race, I suddenly felt the onset of muscle spasm and seizure, so I quickly threw down another three bottles. I wish I had taken more! The cramping stopped within minutes and I was able to run back up to the group I was with before the spasm had struck. For 9 hours and 52 minutes of punishing effort on a volcanic island in heat and humidity, I was able to push hard and almost sprint the last few miles uphill to the finish. In the past, I have pulled out shortly after the muscle spasm. Not this year.
It is hard to quantify how much a product helps, but the facts are, I only suffered a few minutes of cramping, which soon passed and never returned. I was able to push all the way to the finish line and make it into the top 100 out of 3,000 runners at one of the toughest ultra marathons in the world. My only regret is I wish I had taken more with me on the race. I think that speaks for itself as a product test. There is no way I would ever undertake an event like this again without a good supply of #ITSTHENERVE stashed in my backpack.
#ITSTHENERVE appears to hold the key to fixing a life long issue I’ve had while pushing hard in a race. When you have invested so much time, money and pure effort into making a start line only to have all that work ripped from you by sudden muscle spasm and cramping is crushing. This could be the cure I have been looking for!
#ITSTHENERVE At Leadville: “I felt rejuvenated!” Read Hayley Bate’s story on mountain biking, running and training without cramps.
Don’t Let A Late Start — Or Cramps — Hold You Back: Marty Munson shares how she refused to succumb to muscle cramps and find a way to maintain the active lifestyle she craves.
4 Measurements to Build Your Fitness Profile: Four ways athletes of every stripe can monitor and/or improve their overall fitness.