This year’s issue of the demanding ÖtillÖ battle saw an astonishing show by Team “Milebreaker / ÖppetHav”. After rambling the 2013 winning squad “HEAD Swimming” containing of Björn Englund and Paul Krochak for the main portion of the competition, Swedes Lelle Moberg and Daniel Hansson secured the duel in a spot-on elegance by thrashing out a blazing second half of the race. After 65 kilometers of running and 10 kilometers of swimming they were the first to cross the magical finish line on the Swedish Üto islet. 08:16:12 of combatting were in their arm and legs. Still enough left to bash the champagne…
Fortunate enough 50% of the wining crew, 34 year old gym teacher Lelle Moberg, found some time between kayaking the Stockholm archipelago, mountain biking the local trails, eating milk chocolate and drinking Coca cola to reply to some questions around SwimRunning, triathlon and what else endurance sport has to offer.
|Picture: Gunnar Eid|
Me: How would you describe SwimRun racing to “Non-Swedish” endurance fans?
Lelle: SwimRun is solely fun! Mixing running and swimming is just nice and never gets boring. Once you don’t feel like running anymore it’s time to swim again. When you have enough of the swimming, then it’s time to run. On top of that you also get to see amazing places and race with good friends.
You competed, and won this year’s Engadin SwimRun with Carolin Holmqvist. On top you raced the notorious ÖTillÖ with Daniel Hansson and secured the victory there as well. Besides an upmost fitness level, what is your secret to successful team racing?
Teamwork! You are never stronger or faster than the weakest link. You need to help each other at all times. We always carry a leash to be able to move as fast as possible while moving with the same pace. When you race SwimRun, two are stronger than one – especially during long distance racing. It’s also important to train a lot together to know each other’s weak points, how you react during pressure and when you are getting really tired.
|Picture: Gunnar Eid|
How does a characteristic training week look like for you?
I work with a coach, Jens Lünekilde. He helps me with my training. During the year there is a big variation depending on where I am in the season and if it’s close to a triathlon or a SwimRun competition. During a ”normal” week, I swim almost every morning before I go to work and have one longer session in the water during the weekend. After work, I train pretty much every day, either biking or running and sometimes both. On the weekends i always do my long bike session. As I work as a teacher my main training period is during the summer when I have 8 weeks holiday. During those weeks I often get more than 30 training hours in the books.
What is your favored session and why?
The early morning swim in a lake close to my apartment. It’s magic to dive into flat calm water and eat breakfast with good friends on the dock before going to work. It makes life a lot easier.
You had a successful Norseman race in 2012 (5th place finish). Is it possible to relate the roughness of this race with ÖTillÖ. Which is the harder competition and why?
It’s two totally different races so it’s hard to compare. They are both some of the world’s toughest one day races, and they are both beautiful and very demanding. Racing ÖtillÖ you fight as a team, and I believe that you, and your teammate, can push harder because you have each other. Also, running 64 km in a wetsuit is hardcore and not comparable to anything!
|Picture: Gunnar Eid|
Do you already have plans for the forthcoming season?
I will compete more in SwimRun and put less energy on triathlon. This year my main goal was Norseman and I put down A LOT of hours on the bike, then I had a bad day during the race and all those hours were for nothing. I believe SwimRun will grow as a sport, and the opposition will be tougher. If I don’t train for a triathlon, I will be able to put down more energy and time on running and swimming and improve. The main goals for 2015 will be Engadin and ÖTillÖ.
As you are from Sweden I guess you are into winter sports. Do you participate in any competitions throughout the cooler part of the year?
I do like winter sports but If I would compete, it would probably be on a warm place somewhere else in the world.
After winning the biggest and most respected race the SwimRun scene has to offer, what is the goal for next year’s version of ÖTillÖ?
I would love to go sub 8 hours next year!
While you training, what is your favorite record you listen too?
The black album by Metallica. Simply the best for training.