Felix's multi-day ultramarathon. A gruelling 330km French Alps adventure. Solo, self-supported and determined. Attempt 2.0. #FFFriverrun
Kyle: Felix, please intro yourself. Who are you and what is it that you do in general?
Felix: My name is Felix. I'm a born and bred Londoner but have been living down here in the Southern French Alps for over 11 years now . I started my company Fasting For Fitness in 2017 with the sole goal of improving people's health and fitness by utilising the techniques and benefits of Intermittent Fasting (IF) - the plan was to fund the venture by selling a range of healthy supplements that could be used for people that were Intermittent Fasting - a couple of which are available on the website fastingforfitness.club - these are two, organic protein powders made with coconut flour and some interesting and super healthy natural ingredients like Baobab and Blueberry. Personally, I have been using IF - AKA Time-Restricted Eating(TRE) as a part of my daily health and fitness regime since 2015, and now, at age 48 (49 this year...50 next year!) I'm in the best shape - mind & body - of my life!
Felix: About 3 years ago it became clear to me that if I wanted to reach more people with my very straightforward Health & Fitness and IF message I was going to have to get in front of the camera (something I was loathed to do before then) - it was obvious from talking to friends and seeing which posts were the most popular that it was me and not FFF that was the actual brand (I hate when people use that term in that context!)
So I started thinking of ways to drive more traffic to my social media pages at the same time as sticking to my (and FFF's) core values, as well as telling a story (with all the highs and lows that come with that) and pushing myself way beyond anything I had previously done in terms of physical endurance challenges. Enter the #fffriverrun! - We regularly drive down to Barcelona and the first few hours of that journey you are following the River Durance - the source of which is in Montgenevre, a ski station on the Italian border 20mins from Briancon where we live. The River Durance ends in Avignon, where it flows out into the River Rhone. I started thinking, I wonder how long it would take to run the length of the river - from source to mouth.
Turns out, the route next to the river is about 330km. I figured I could do that in 5 days with a mixture of trail and road running plus walking and hiking - only 72km per day...that's 1.7 marathons! As if that wasn't hard enough I decided I would take all my food, camping equipment and everything I need to survive by myself for the whole time, completely unsupported. And if that wasn't hard enough, I thought, fuck it - I'm also going to fast for 14hrs per day!
Kyle: What has been the main driver for you to this solo expedition?
Felix: To push myself to my limit and hope the challenge resonates with people and shows them what is possible with a bit of imagination, commitment and grit if they keep themselves in shape
Kyle: Lets get into the training and mind set component. What does a typical day of training look like for you?
The last month (34 days and counting as I write this) has been full on! We wake up about 6am. Me and my wife love to start the day with a cuddle. It really is the best way to start the day!
First of all push-ups - I started with 30 but now in week 5 I'm up to sets of 50.
Then it's rehydration time - usually about 300ml of room temperature spring water with a tablespoon of lemon and/or lime juice in it.
Then I make tea for us both and we both start our working day
My wife usually comes down to workout about 8:30am so that's usually the time for running gear on and feeding the dogs. We're out the door by 9am generally.
Morning run is 12km with my backpack loaded to 12kg. The dogs love it. Me, not so much. Sometimes it's a bike ride - 50-70km. Last week I did a 37km hike and run.
If it's the 12km run I'm back by about 10:30am and work until 1:30pm then start prepping lunch
I make my protein/recovery/performance shake once lunch is prepped and always break my fast with that. You can check out what I put in it here
Our first meal is usually between 2-3pm. Generally closer to 2pm - it's always a super low-carb/keto meal - steak and eggs, burger patties and eggs, bacon and eggs, sometimes a couple dozen oysters, smoked salmon and scrambled eggs is a winner. My wife makes the best scrambled eggs! She cooks them in flavourless coconut oil and adds about half a teaspoon of turmeric powder. Soooo good! My wife will have beetroot or char-grilled peppers with it. I've been playing around with the Carnivore diet for a couple of months so generally just stick to the protein at lunch time.
Depending on work schedule, family stuff, day of the week, my wife's schedule etc - I might get out again in the afternoon for another run or hike or just smash out a few sets of push-ups or pull-ups
At about 6-7pm I'll take the dogs out and do my evening push-ups on the Fitness Log!
We eat meal number 2 at about 7:30pm. Again, always low-carb - roast chicken and salad, veal and carrot stew, sausage casserole, steaks, whatever I rustle up is always super nutritious and super tasty!
After that I'm editing and uploading video until about 11pm - I'm posting 4 videos every day during the lead up to the #fffriverrun. It's very very time consuming.
If I get to bed before midnight I'm happy. I read every night for 10-20mins.
And then we do the whole thing again the next day! TBH I don't know how I'm still going strong after 34 days of this. I do have a rest day every 6th day - that entails no running, just a 8km hike with the 12kg pack in the morning.
If your readers would like a far less hardcore (non-training) version of my day then please get them to check out my guide to the FFF Plan here - it's an ongoing series, next instalment incoming soon!
Felix: No booze during this 6-week training camp! Not even a beer on a Friday night. I like a drink. Especially at the weekend but that stuff sucks motivation like nothing else. If I want to let my hair down (we have a party this Saturday) I will sometimes have a cup of magic truffle tea. That stuff is pretty fantastic for training. Have a giggle and a good time and in the morning I can happily smash out a 15km run.
Felix: See above for my two daily meals - low-carb for my main meals is key to staying injury and inflammation free, fully motivated, not fat and not sleepy in the afternoons. Runder Biltong is fucking amazing. Especially to kill off any post lunch sugar cravings and to top up my daily protein levels.
Eating enough protein - especially when training for something like the #fffriverrun - is an actual task and not as easy as it sound That's not to say I'm sugar free...last night I ate a whole 400g tub of Lemon and Mandarin Häagen-Dazs! With all the training it doesn't touch the sides! My supplement game is always strong but during this training period I've stepped it up.
I'm taking nearly 20 different supplements every day! If any of your readers want to know exactly what I'm taking please feel free to reach out to me on any of my social channels - FFF Insta - Personal Insta - I'm always more than happy to have a chat!
Kyle: How are you balancing work, exercise, and your general day-to-day commitments?"
Felix: I am a big believer in deciding what your goal is then kinda nudging life around that. Plus, just listen to your heart. It will always tell you to do the right thing. Also and most importantly, I have the most amazing wife and the most amazing son. 100% support is all I get from them both.
Felix: 90% of my training is done fasted. And I always break my fast with my shake. Then it's Runder Biltong time! That always goes in between my Fast-Breaking Shake and my First Meal of the day. Then I'll usually have more Biltong in the late afternoon and/or early evening. If I manage to watch an hours TV in the evening I'll usually slice off a few pieces of Biltong then. It's a great TV/Movie snack and a shit load better for you than popcorn!
Kyle: We are absolutely loving watching this progress towards the actual FFF River run and you 100% have us in your corner, Felix. We are very happy to support you on your journey and will continue to do so in the future.
Good luck with the training and we will keep our audience updated through your videos and content on your pages and ours.