Ultramarathoner prepares

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Running the LOU 52

AMHERST – Some of us would rest on our laurels after completing the Bluenose Marathon in a personal best time of  three hours, 28 minutes. Anthony Fromm set his sights on tackling an even harder challenge.

“(It’s) a little daunting,” said the runner, who trains with the Amherst Striders.

But it’s more exciting than daunting looking ahead to Aug. 24. That’s when he’ll run the Lou 52 in Cape Breton – a 52 km ultramarathon run on a trail between Inverness and Mabou.

The race was created to honour the memory of a woman named Linda Nagels who fought ovarian cancer for seven years (LOU stands for Linda’s Ovarian Ultra). Registration is limited to 52 runners. Fromm heard about it when a friend in Cape Breton emailed a link.

“I think it does,” said Fromm, when asked if training for a longer, off-road race takes a different approach.

The runner has completed three marathons. For the ultra, he’s scaled back speed expectations. And instead of doing one long run a week as part of his training, he’s doing two, back to back: 30 to 30 km Saturday, followed by 20 to 25 km Sunday. He’s averaging 70 to 80 km per week.

His active hobby contrasts with his physically inactive job. The draftsman for a steel company sits in front of a computer all day.

Fromm said running is a good detox after a long workday, and it keeps the father of young kids healthy. He’s been running for about 15 years – initially to combat weight creep while abroad – but more seriously the past few years.

The race enthusiast thinks it’s the first ultramarathon in Cape Breton. A donation in support of Ovarian Cancer Canada can be made at thelou52.wix.com/lou52



Geographic location: Cape Breton, Inverness, Mabou

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