In Nuuksio I ran the 42km. This was my first marathon distance and my longest race so far. I first hit upon the Nuuksio Classic when I attended the first Suunto Summit in September 2016 and ran the Helsinki City Trail. I had the pleasure to run with one of the organizers of the summit, we found that we had similar pace. We talked about running a marathon together (first one for both of us) and agreed that we will run Nuuksio Classic Marathon at that same weekend and one year later, this September, it actually happened.
From streets to trails
I have attended several street running races in Switzerland, my home country, in the past few years. I’ve only started trail running with the participation of the Helsinki City trail one year ago and immediately loved it. I signed up for a trail race in summer in Switzerland. Unfortunately, I had to stop running for 8 months due to an ankle injury and had to miss it. When I ran the Nuuksio, I was back into running for two months only so there was no time for other races. This is why – until now, I’ve only attended trail running events in Finland. 🙂
Next year I will definitely be running some trail races around Europe. The list of potentials is endless!
Do you think trails in Finland are flat & easy?
Special about the Nuuksio Classic is the family atmosphere and the motivation of every single person involved to make this event unique & unforgettable. Even if you do not know anybody, you immediately feel welcome and not as a foreigner at all. I also like the charity aspect of donating part of the racing fee to the National Park to ensure it remains as beautiful as it is now.
I highly recommend the Nuuksio Classic to every trail runner who thinks the trails in Finland are flat and easy! I can promise you will be surprised how technical the trails are and how much ascent and descent you collect over the distance. Besides that, the trails and landscape are stunning.
Recovering in a freezing cold lake
What really surprised me was the sauna after the race! I guess that is something you only do in Finland. Moreover, you have to jump into a freezing cold lake after heating up at 90 degrees. At that time latest, you see your live spirits coming back.
Memorable weekend with the trail community
I enjoyed the whole event so much. The pasta on Friday night in the Nuuksio hotel, the trails, the running (at least for the first 35 km before my big suffering started), the beauty of the nature, the sauna, the social and beer after the race. It’s hard to pick a favourite but the sauna and the jump in the lake would rank first. The moment of crossing the finish line and the well-deserved beer complete the podium.
Also the organizers of the race didn’t just hide in their office. They were waiting at the finish line and brought drinks and blankets to the people arriving and cheering on everybody who made it. It’s a small thing but one of the most memorable ones for me. We even all went out to cheer on the last two runners of the 72 km distance which arrived after 13 hours of running.
I’m currently looking at some races early next year to keep my motivation and a little pressure on for cold winter trainings. I will run for sure the Zermatt Marathon (Switzerland, 45km, July) and YES! I’m coming back next year to run the Nuuksio Classic again! Maybe even 72 km. My yearly visit in Finland is fixed now.
Running the Nuuksio Classic Trail Marathon was an incredible experience. Besides pushing my own limit further, the whole atmosphere was so inspiring, being around so many like-minded strong runners.