It’s ten days since I finished the Legends Trail 500 now. And it’s been a tough 10 days, both mentaly and physically. Now I’m slowly getting into the right headspace to write some stuff down. But my memories about the race are fragmented. Speaking to people about it, people who were there and witnessed the race, helps. But I’m afraid I need more time for the story. Since I don’t want to keep you waiting so long, dear readers, my friends, I decided to split my race report in three. I will start with a breakdown of the race in numbers. This helps to recover some of the memories that seem to be lost, overwritten by newer memories from the latter parts of the race. The second part of the trilogy will be the story. The best part in my opinion. And lastly, I will write down a kind of commentary on the race. It will be about curious details, observations and questions that want answering. My own questions and yours if you pleas. It would be cool if this part will rouse some discussion. If you have any questions you’d like to ask. Please leave a comment below and I will include them in the last report.

Enough talking. Numbers! From start to finish:

Total distance (recorded):  515 kilometres

Total elevation gain (recorded): 14.999 metres

Total time: 108:40 hours

Total moving time: 88:42 hours

Total resting time: 19:58 hours

Total sleeping time: 10:30 hours

Average speed: 4,6 km/h

Average moving speed: 5,8 km/h

Average pace: 12:39 min/km

Average moving pace: 10:33 min/km

Total steps: 581.505

Total calories burned moving (recorded): 30.267 kcal

Total calories burned resting (estimation): 5.248 kcal

Total calories consumed (estimation): 33.003 kcal

Total batteries used: 4×4 AAA for the headlamp

Breakdown per leg:

It’s interesting to see that, except for a slightly faster first leg, my pace and heart rate during the race are pretty consistent. There is a significant decline after the 300 kilometre mark and then again after checkpoint 6. Or actually shortly before checkpoint 6 when a couple of overuse issues start to kick in and my pace is reduced to a walk/hike. Though my walking/hiking pace is only a little under 5 km/h which is, after more than 400 kilometres of running and hiking, still pretty decent in my opinion.


Distance (km’s) Elevation gain (metres)   Time (hours) Speed (km/h) Pace  (min/km)   Steps    (#) Average Heartrate (beats/min.)

Calories Burned (kCal)


83,58 2.797 11:26 7,3 8:13 90.847 136 4.927


82,72 2.491 13:52 6,0 10:04 95.080 110 4.625


67,49 2.410 11:32 5,8 10:16 77.574 110 3.778


66,55 2.175 10:32 6,3 9:30 74.775 118 3.783


63,35 1.481 11:44 5,4 11:07 68.118 107 3.579


80,35 1.650 15:17 5,3 11:25 92.356 118 5.440


71,17 1.995 15:08 4,7 12:46 82.755 103 4.135

Breakdown per Checkpoint (Cp):

I knew beforehand that sleep would play a significant role in this race. I’ve never run more than two days (and nights) in a row, which can be done without sleep. My strategy was to sleep one sleep cycle in every checkpoint (except Cp1 where I would take a power nap) and then see later in the race if I would need more. Based on my experience at checkpoint 2, where I’d had a restless sleep during the day, I changed this strategy to a 3 hour sleep at every checkpoint at night and skip sleep during daytime transitions.


Time used (hrs)   Sleeping time (hrs) Effectivity

Cp1 Nandrin 83 km  

1:15  0:15 Power Nap (20:00 pm): quite effective

Cp2 Grand-Halleux 164 km  

2:18 1:15 One sleep cycle during the day (11:00 am): restless sleep, rather ineffetive

CP3 Abrefointaine 229 km  

4:48 3:00 During the night (1:00 am): perfect, very effective

Cp4 Le Grand-Trixhe 295 km  

1:05 0:00 I learned from Cp2. No sleep because of  daytime. It was a stretch to Cp5 though.

Cp5 Xhoffraix 356  

5:00 3:00 During the night (5:00 am): perfect, very effective

Cp6 Chôdes 435  

5:32 3:00 During the night (1:00 am): perfect, very effective

Breakdown calorie intake:

It’s been a culinary outing really. I’ve been able to eat well during the entirety of the race. I believe that’s a huge part of my succes. I used a lot of sweet stuff between checkpoints simply because it’s easy to carry and supplemented this with sausage rolls and anything hearty I craved and could lay my hands on in the villages we passed. Saucy M&M details: I consumed about as many calories from M&M’s as from hot meals! A quarter of my total calorie intake was from M&M’s!

I consumed a total of 33,003 kcal during the race. I burned 30,267 kcal while running and another 5,248 kcal during the breaks at the checkpoints. That’s a total of 2,512 kcal deficiency. A hundred grams of body fat provides approximately 770 kcal. In theory I would have lost 326 grams of body weight during the race. However, the scale said 1.5 kg a few days after the race. This might partly be explained by the fact that calorie intake is often based on estimates. For example, a few hundred kcal less for each hot meal and that immediately saves 300-400 grams of body fat. The difference might also be explained by my energy consumption after the race. My resting heart rate has been around 15 beats / per minute higher than usual after the race, which translates to a higher heart rate during activity and therefore a much higher energy consumption than normal. I think that also explains the increased appetite to a greater extent by the way. In any case, it’s interesting to look back on a race in terms of caloric consumption and intake.

I only drank water while running, with only a few exceptions. A had a coke at the snackbar in Trois-Ponts, a double espresso at the bakery in Stoumont, a sprite from the vending machine at the bottom of Ninglinspo and another coke from the bakery at Salmchâteau. I took 4 half litre bottles of water on every leg. I refilled half a litre from a stream close to its source near La Roche on leg 1. And I took 5 half litre bottles of water on the anticipated long 6th leg that took us over the High Fenns. It was always enough with a maximum of half a litre to spare at the end of each leg.


While running/ at cp    Pieces/ grams    Calories /item    Total calories

M&M’s pinda  

running 1.600 g. 516/100 g. 8.256


running 9 pcs. 256 2.300

Polish candybar (forgot the name), contained 2% alcohol  

running 4 pcs. 240 960

Gingerbar Snelle Jelle  

running 10 pcs. 198 1.980

Dried apricots  

running 460 g. 241/100g. 1.108

Organix squeeze bag baby food   

running 14 65 910

Slurpfruit squeeze bag fruits  

running 12 49 588

Sausage roll  

running 5 286 (est.) 1.430

Tompouce (Salmchateau)   

running 2 288 (est.) 576

Pain saucisse (Salmchateau)  

running 2 434(est.) 868

Turkish bread with salad, merquez and coke (Trois-Ponts)  

running 1 628 (est.) 628

Sandwich Serrano ham, pesto parmasan, rocket (Stoumont)  

running 1 684 (est.) 684


Running 30 (est.) 500 cc. 15 litres


Checkpoint 8 28 (est) 224

Coca cola  

Checkpoint 12 126/300 cc 1.512


Checkpoint 12 negligible 0

Hot meal  

Checkpoint 11 800 (est.) 8.800

Tosti (Croques monsieur) han and cheese  

Checkpoint 3.5 459 (est.) 1.606

Kerel (flower power-your ex (bitter)-crisp; 5,5% alcohol  

Checkpoint 3 191 (est.) 573



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