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Vorfreue aufs Leiden: Die UTMB-Vorbereitung von Ida-Sophie Hegemann
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Looking forward to suffering: Ida-Sophie Hegemann's UTMB preparation

Ida-Sophie Hegemann ended up in trail running by chance and is now one of the best trail runners in the world. Her greatest success to date is winning the Transalpin Run three times in a row. We meet Ida in Pontresina (SUI), during her last training camp before the UTMB. What attracts you to trail running?

Words: Sven Rudolph
Video and photos: Fellusch

Do sports, explore nature and find yourself in complete peace? Sounds very good and that's probably why trail running is so trendy at the moment. In addition to the physical exertion, sport also offers many benefits for mental health. While on the road or track the focus is usually on distance, pace or time, in trail running it is the running experience itself that counts.

We were enthusiastic about trail running after our interview with Christian Meier. The name of a talented trail running hopeful from Germany, Ida-Sophie Hegemann, and her ambitions for the UTMB also came up in the conversation. She also originally comes from track and road running and “came to trail running by a (happy) coincidence.”

“Of course you like to win races and somewhere success confirms you, but above all I just do it out of passion.”

- Ida Sophie Hegemann

For the love of sport, she moved to the mountains, far away from her family. And that despite the fact that she is a total family person, with many little siblings. “That’s difficult for me and I would also say that you’re just a lot lonely in ultrarun trail running.” A contrast that we immediately noticed in the short time we were allowed to accompany Ida: a super nice and approachable person with a passion that brings with it exactly the opposite: loneliness.

“Of course you usually run in the most beautiful nature, you are surrounded by incredibly beautiful views and high mountains. Trail running is really something special. Now the next race at the UTMB is 170 kilometers and 10,000 meters in altitude. I still don’t know what I’ve gotten myself into.”

Your next big challenge, the Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc (UTMB), is one of the most legendary and prestigious trail running competitions - perhaps even the most extreme ultra race in the world. Starting in Chamonix, it leads over 170 kilometers and 10,000 meters in altitude around the Mont Blanc massif and through France, Italy and Switzerland.

Her passion and determination for trail running combined with her down-to-earth nature impressed us - and we are definitely Ida fans!

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