New Brunswick man says runners are falling for his punishing trail runs

·2 min read
Jos Eijkelestam, left, plans trail runs around New Brunswick, giving the events names like the Odell Onslaught and the Mazerolle Masochism. (Submitted by Jos Eijkelestam - image credit)
Jos Eijkelestam, left, plans trail runs around New Brunswick, giving the events names like the Odell Onslaught and the Mazerolle Masochism. (Submitted by Jos Eijkelestam - image credit)

For Jos Eijkelestam, falling is part of the fun.

It suits the theme of the running events he's organized at different locations around New Brunswick this year: the Sufferance Series.

Eijkelestam estimates about 45 runners showed up to the run he organized in Fredericton's Odell Park on Saturday for the Odell Onslaught. For four hours, they tried to run laps through a five-kilometre route he mapped out.

By around 1 p.m. AT, Eijkelestam said some runners had tapered off.

"There's still plenty out there. Diehards," he said.

Submitted by Jos Eijkelestam
Submitted by Jos Eijkelestam

Eijkelestam's ran four laps on Saturday, and told CBC News he planned to run one more.

"[Trail runs] are harder, in general; there's rocks and roots everywhere, there's some mud, and so it's a tough run, and there's a lot of trail runners in the area and New Brunswick in general, and they like to punish themselves, in a way," he said.

The names of Eijkelestam's events might be evidence of that: Mazerolle Masochism, Hanwell Hammering, Horn Humiliation, and the Wonderfully Wicked Woolastook Whopping.

Saturday's event was the second he planned in Odell. Earlier this winter, people ran through the park for the Odell Obliteration.

Mrinali Anchan/CBC
Mrinali Anchan/CBC

Eijkelestam, who also organized these runs last year, but without an official name, said Odell is a great park, with a main trail and single track.

"It's just a beautiful park. It's great, it's got everything," he said, including a public washroom near the beginning of the running route.

He said he organizes the events more for other people than himself, although he is preparing for a run later this summer in Quebec, so he called Saturday the kickoff for his training.

"Trail running is great for everyone. The more tired you get, the easier you fall," he said, adding he had already fallen once that day.

After each run, Eijkelestam updates his Facebook group for the series with photos from the event.

By Saturday afternoon, he was relaxing after a long day and made a final post: "Currently resting and soaking in my bathtub."

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