Mattias Bramstång

Ultra

48-hour Bornholm, Denmark, 2008-05-25

by on Maj.25, 2008, under 48-hour, Ultra

The objective about this race was to get as far as 300 kilometres and try not to sleep at all if possible. To my help I had a friend, Andreas Falk, who desired the same things as me. So we were two runners who stuck together, trying to stay on the loop and keep on moving. We had the idea about helping each other when the hard hours were to come. And they will, sooner or later. To our advantage we had some great help from Andreas family and a friend of his. They supported us with everything we needed and they gave us great encouragement during the race.

The race started at Friday noon and the first hours of the adventure past away easily and quite fast. The first laborious hours came during the night and in the early morning hours of Saturday. We managed these hours of sleepiness and fatigue quite well. Later on the sleepy feeling vanished and we slowly added kilometres to our distance. As the day past by we both went afraid of the second night which was to come. Some hours later the poor electric light was turned on and soon the twilight embraced us. Then we had to fight our way along the darkness for many hours. I remember that we shivered of cold from time to time and the sleepiness was a great burden. Actually, I can’t truthfully remember these hours of fatigue and our fight against the “demons of sleepiness”. We were like sleepwalkers for many hours. Later on, after the light of the early dawn, we got some more speed in our legs before we once again slowed down and walked the last laps in a comfortable speed. Finally we reached our objectives and that gave us deep satisfaction.

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Copenhagen Ultramarathon 100km

by on Apr.26, 2008, under 100 kilometer, Ultra

In the early morning hours I left my home in Halmstad. Two hours later I was at the startarea in Copenhagen. An hour later, at 08.00 we started the race. We ran togheter with the 60k runners and we were set to run on a 10k lap. It was a beautiful lap, we were running along green fields, smal lakes, crossing some smal bridges and making lots of short stops at aidstations.
I had a hard day. I feelt exhausted from the moment I got out of the car. It got a little better after 40-50k. Then it was more natural to feel exhausted. I never feelt the flow during this race but in the last two three laps it was slightly better because I was exhausted for sure. I finished second with 8h 57min.

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Spartathlon

by on Sep.29, 2007, under Point to point, Ultra

After years dreaming about this great race I finally found myself at the start line among runners from all over the world. I think everyone of the participants affects the same desire; to repeat what Pheidippides once achieved. To run from Athens to Sparta and reach the finish the very next day before sunset.

The start is held just outside the theatre of Herodes Atticus on the south slope of the Acropolis of Athens. There, the history is present and it gives a great feeling and inner strength. Maybe this is a gift from the Gods, like a never-ending energy source that surrounds the runners during the race. Besides inner strength and a calm feeling, outer strength is what will move the body ahead. All of the runners at the start area appear to be fit and it will be a request because the course is very demanding. Among these prepared runners just a few gets through the 246-kilometre curse within the 36-hour limit.

I have heard a lot of the race and my greatest fear was to run alone in the dark. To challenge the mountain in darkness or to find my way. So it was a relief to have a friend along my side. Christian Ritella and I ran together the entire time. The night elapse and in the morning hours of the second day we pushed it for a few hours before the upcoming sun set us on fire. The power of the sun prevented us from running. We just walked hours by hours like zombies. The jokes were out, nobody had anything to say and we were tired. However it was just enough with one little glint of an eye and a smile to make us both laugh and appreciate the moment as it was.

With half an hour to spare we reached the finish and when I ran the last piece of the race I felt that life was more than enough. Finally I lay my hand on the foot of the statue of King Leonidas. Then I was served a sip of holy water from the river Evrotas and an olive wreath was placed upon my head. Tears of relief and happiness ran down my cheek as I walked away.

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6-Tage Bahnlauf Erkrath

by on Aug.07, 2007, under 6-days, Ultra

A classical 6-day race is a 144-hour non-stop running event. The race is simply ”go as you please” and you just have to run, eat, rest and sleep. In the end of the 144-hour the one who has ran the greatest distance is the winner. Simple but so hard.

We were 41 runners who started the journey Sunday 29th of July and we were 36 who finished at Saturday 4th of August. We had to run through cold nights, hot days, rainy days and sometimes sunny days. We lived in tents just a few meters away from the track. We had great supports from the organisers who supplied us with food and beverages and much more. My daily distances during the week was 153km, 112km, 107km, 88km, 101km and 116km. 677km in total.

People ask me if it doesn’t hurt a lot during such a race. I answer them ”yes it does”. Then they say it is a crazy thing to do. Maybe they have right but I think that the ultimate hope of every heart is to find the glory within its selves. That is what I’m trying for. Not to race, not to compete just to feed my life!

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St Olavsloppet Ultra 129km

by on Jul.06, 2007, under Point to point, Stage race, Ultra

St Olavsloppet Ultra 129km. From the beginning the race is a relay from Trondheim in Norway to Östersund in Sweden. The relay is a four day stage race and during the second and third day the runners have to past the national border and in the same time the mountains. During this two days there is a small start field of runners who runs the distance by themselves.

This year we were 17 runners who ran the 129km by ourselves. It was at least 25 degree Celsius at start and the sun shined on us almost all the time. The wind was strong and blow mostly from the front. During this conditions three runners from Norway and three runners from Sweden had a international match. After two days of running the Norwegian runners outrun the Swedish runners and won with an quarter of an hour. We had a great match and I enjoyed the run, the pasta party during the evenings and the friendship between us all. I finished the race with the total time of 10 hours and 35 minutes and ended up in fourth place. I’m satisfied with that.

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Personal best 100k

by on Maj.20, 2007, under 100 kilometer, Ultra

Stark Ultra run 100 kilometer in Stige, Denmark 19th May. I have been there 2 times before and I like this race. When I understod it would be the last time ever for this race, I had to go there! Two years ago I made my fastest 100k race there, (8h 46min). Now I would come back to make an improvement.

19th May was a perfect day to run. The sky was a little cloudy and the wind blow from the right direction. At 0600 the race began and some hours later I was moving fearless at a speed I only been capable to maintain during a 6-hour race before. I could not maintain the speed to the finish line, after six seven hours and I had to slow down some. I past 75k whitin 6h 4min and then I had my hard time struggling the next 15k at 1h 20min. I made a better last lap (10k) and finished with 8h 17min 42sec. I´m proud of that time and it was enough to win the race and to achive 6th fastest time ever through 10 years of Stark Ultra run.

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Bislett 24-hours Indoor Challenge, Oslo

by on Dec.09, 2006, under 24-hour, Ultra

My fourth attempt on the 24-hour race. This time I prove to myself that I have capacity to go beyond 200 kilometre. Since I was so pleased with 200K I left the track with half an hour to go. The knowledge of that I was not using all the time gives me scope of new dreams. What can I do with half an hour and if I run a little quicker from the start…

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Loutraki International Ultrarunning Festival 7-day race, Greece

by on Mar.31, 2006, under Ultra

I just ran a little bit more than 390 kilometre in 84 hours and then the race was over. The demanding 750 meter long track with all the bumps and the massive altitude difference on the track broke me down. I got problems with one Achilles tendon. It got swollen and the tissue was crackling like hell. My desire with 700 kilometres during the 7-day race vanished. I became a spectator for the rest of the race. After I redraw I could not let go of the bitterness I had, it took me some time actually. Because, I went to Greece with the expectation about a flat and smooth track, just like we were promised. Instead of running we lined up for a battle. I survived with bodily damage and a lesson learned. Prepare for the unexpected…

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Skövde 6-hour

by on Mar.11, 2006, under 6-hour, Ultra

My first 6-hour race.

With quite much experience from marathons and some 100K races I had the guts to open quite fast. During this cold day, approximately 5 to 10 degrees below zero, I passed 42 kilometres within 3hours and 15minutes. I kept the pace for one more hour and then I tried to increase it a little bit. I had no problems during my run and I was in great mood. Last part of the race was nice, I flow a bit and landed beyond 76 kilometres. A few seconds after the stop signal I ran to the showers. There I had a gainer for recovery, a hot shower, a decent meal and then I drove back home. Satisfaction was all around.

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La Transe Gaule IV

by on Sep.02, 2005, under Point to point, Stage race, Ultra

After 18 days and 1166 kilometres I made an accomplishment of a dream. My most demanding and desired type of race was fulfilled. I had finished a transcontinental stage race. I had run from the English Canal to the Mediterranean. When I ran out on the beach, passing the finish line, a great adventure was past. A bitter but delightful feeling got me when I put my arms up in the sky. I made it, it’s over, it’s my Masterpice I thought, but in the same time I realize that these last weeks of my life never will come again. A fantastic experience that gave me experience of fatigue, pain, doubts and anxious. But most of all, and in the end, I experienced friendship, blessing and gratitude.

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