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Athletes

Athletes

Rob Samuel

Rob
Samuel

I am currently based in Bangor North Wales and work for a National Trust Youth Project in Beddgelert.
I started running quite late when I was in university. 

Since then I have managed to gain success in a number of disciplines from road running, cross country and mountain. However, my biggest successes and highlights have probably been representing Great Britain in two World Mountain running championships, finishing 5th in the Commonwealth Mountain Running Championships and winning the Snowdonia Marathon.

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN WITH THE SALOMON TRAIL TEAM?
Since 2011, so this will be my second year.

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS AND GOALS FOR THE 2012 SEASON?
My goals for the year are to post a couple of quick marathon times, one in London and hopefully also an Autumn marathon too. Apart form that I am also aiming for the European and World mountain running championships during the summer.

YOUR HIGHEST POINT OF YOUR CAREER?
Definitely got to be getting my first GB vest for the World Mountain running championships in 2010. Also, in 2011 after a long lay off with injury managing to get myself back to fitness and be selected for second GB vest. Winning the Snowdonia Marathon in front of a home crowd was also something special.

AND LOWEST POINT?
A long lay off with injury at the beginning of 2011. I had numerous issues around my pelvis, groin and psoas muscle as well as inflammation of my pubic symphysis. My performances had been deteriorating for a while before the injury was fully diagnosed and it was also a long road back which was pretty frustrating.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE RACE?
My favourite race has got to be the Snowdonia Marathon. The atmosphere is fantastic and the support on the high street finish is incredible - it has definitely left a lasting impression on me after last year.

WHAT WAS THE TERRAIN LIKE?
It is primarily a very hilly road marathon. However, there are some sections that go off road on rocky trail and also a mud slide of a descent down to the finish. Not to forget a brutal climb at around the 22 mile point which just keeps on going.

WHAT SALOMON KIT DO YOU GENERALLY USE AND ENJOY THE MOST?
I love the new XR mission at the moment - they feel light and fast and are perfect for on the trails or roads. I also like the Salomon XT Softshell Vest/Gilet. It is perfect on cold days to keep your core warm.

HOW DO YOU TRAIN DURING THE SEASON?
I train on the roads, trails and track, with a mixture of steady running and hard sessions. I also especially love to head out into the mountains or forests of Snowdonia which I’m lucky enough to have on my doorstep.

WHAT WOULDN'T YOU RUN WITHOUT (SHOES DOESN'T COUNT!)
My legs! No, my watch – I’m not a slave to it but like to have an idea of how long I’ve been out.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURTIE TRAINING ROUTE?
At the moment I enjoy blasting around the forest trails of Newborough on Anglesey. Loops around the Gwydyr forest near Betws-y-Coed are also great.

IF YOU COULD COMPETE IN ONE LAST RACE – WHAT WOULD IT BE?
I’m going to have to go all road running on you now and say a major games marathon if I got the qualifying standard.

WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE TRAINING OR RACING PARTNER?
Fellow Salomon Trail Team member Nick Swinburn. Nick is great to train with and we always push each other to the limit. We also never fail to have a crazy adventure somewhere along the way too. One that springs to mind is a 5 hour or so run on the Isle of Jura, in the searing heat, with only a few fruit pastilles and Kendal mint cake to fuel us – Epic!

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