The inaugural Orion Harriers Epic Epping Forest 50-mile ultramarathon took place on September 16th, and it was also Run Tester Nick’s first ultra. The race was 10 five-mile loops in Epping Forest and a chance to put two top new trail shoes to the long-distance test, with Nick running the first six laps in the Adidas Terrex Agravic Speed Ultra, and the last four in the Nike Ultrafly (running is a strong word for what happened during some of those last few laps). Also on test: the Coros Pace 3 and Garmin Epix Pro watches, plus some bits from OTE nutrition, and kit from Decathlon, Soar and CimAlp.

00:00​​​​ – Intro
00:12 – Pre-Race
04:55 – The Race
06:35 – Post-Race Recap

Evadict 10L Trail Running Bag from Decathlon – bit.ly/454BjHq

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Hello and welcome to run testers my Name's Nick I'm off to run my first Ultra this morning it's the Orion Harris Epic Epping Forest Ultra So it is the day before the Orion Ultra The Epic Epping Forest Ultra my first Ultramarathon gonna be running 80k Tomorrow around Epping Forest on my Local Trail so it's very close to home Ultra looking forward to it I thought I'd run through all the kit here in Quite an organized manner because I Probably forget something if I did it Whilst on the walk to the race tomorrow So the ride kicks off at 8am tomorrow it Is a small local ultra run by my club Orion harriers it is 10 laps of a five Mile Loop in the forest on trails that I Know really really well there's a couple Of ones that are a bit new to me that I've learned since finding out the ultra Loop but for the most part I'll be on Very familiar stuff pretty well kept Main trails in the forest that are Really hard and dry right now because It's been quite good weather in the UK And then a few little single track Sections in the forest a few more routes And things like that to avoid and then a Couple of grassy sections are a bit more Exposed they'll probably be quite hot Because it's been quite hot tomorrow About 26 degrees apparently we're Kicking off at 8am so have a few hours

It's a bit cooler but it should be quite Hot by the end under the trees it'll be Okay it might be quite hot at other Parts but that will be something else to Consider the lap is not too hilly so It's basically the whole lap is Undulating but there's nothing too Strenuous I think I've run it a few Times but 90 meters of elevation on my Watch per lap so it all adds up to Around 900 meters basically it's not Very hilly we're in London here we're Not in the Alps so there'd be less of a Factor compared to just general time on Feet I think so race car I don't really Have one I've never done anything like This I'm just gonna go and try it I'm Gonna try and keep my heart rate pretty Low that's what I'm going to base my Running speed on really and we'll see What pace comes out and how long it Takes it's going to Kit then and shoes So I'm going to be using two shoes Because I thought it'd be interesting to Test them like this I'm going to start With the Adidas Terex agrovic speed Ultra uh I wasn't actually intend to use The shoe because I've only just started Testing it but I have now put about About 60k on it I've done one a 15 mile Long run in it and I really enjoyed it I Found it really comfortable to go along At very slow speed so I think it'll be All right I'm going to try using it the

Second half of the racer probably gonna Run in the Nike ultrafly which is a shoe I've done a 50k uh running and I feel Very very confident and it's really Stable really comfortable really no I'll Be okay in the shoe and I probably would Have used this shoe a lot alone if I Hadn't just recently got the ALS and Liked using it and thought it would be Good to test them given this chance so I Plan to do six laps is in the Terex or Be going to plan so that would be 30 Miles about a 50k good strong test of it For swapping to the ultrafly for the Last four laps then I can compare the Two over those kind of long distances I'll be running in both watches I'll be Using the Garmin ethics Pro and the Koros phase 3 YouTube watches I've been Testing really liked both of them lately Just do a good battery life test to see How the cross page 3's GPS I think would Be really good for me in testing uh see If there's a big difference over the Course of 80k in the forest of awesome Tree cover compared to the ethics Pro Which I still think garmin's dual band GPS is the best in class really up there A rucksack is the evidect trail running Bag from decathlon it's a 10 liter bag I Use this for my 50k in Wells and I was Doing some training for this Ultra don't Have to carry a huge amount of essential Kit but just hold up who don't just have

To take a beanie hat and glass because It's going to be very warm tomorrow so That's good so there's not a huge amount Of central kit I'm gonna have two soft Flasks in the front of the bag some bars And stuff like that in the back plus Jacket an emergency blanket which you Still do have to take but yeah that bag Is really comfortable it's got three Straps in the front but you can adjust That I found have made it really easy to Use to get a nice stable fit that isn't Too annoying over long runs so if you're Wise It's a tricky one for me because Normally I'm fueling for races I'm gonna Be running very hard burning lots of Cars that isn't really the case tomorrow So I don't really know exactly what I'm Doing but I'm gonna have one soft flask Of water one soft flask of an OTE Supercarbs drink that is it's 80 grams Of carbs per 500 milliliters are Probably diluted down a little bit and Carry it in a smaller Tasker in a way Just to have a constant source of carbs Electrolytes in drink form that I find Quite easy to take on generally we'll See how that goes tomorrow I'm also Going to carry testing a lot of OTE Stuff basically sometimes I'm carrying All this and then you OTE choose which Is a little Energy Chews that have 23 Grams of carbs and their Rice Krispie Bars or case for those with me as well

That would just be stuff to have on the Five Mile Loop just in case I really Want something to eat something you know Actually solid to eat during the Run um And then back at the base you'll have a Few more of those bars some Pringles and Coke Ida bit of food poisoning lately And I learned that pretty much no matter How sick I am I can have uh Pringles and Coke so hopefully that'll be the case if I'm really struggling tomorrow I'll be Able to eat that coke is already open so It flattens down a bit because I prefer Flat Coke so that'll be better for the Run tomorrow also back at base we'll Have a big old bottle or a few bottles Of electrolytes uh Precision Fuel and Hydration's electrolyte drink because it Is gonna be quite hot I'm Gonna Keep on Top of that I think tomorrow as well but Basically all of that might prove to be A complete mistake because like I said I Don't really know what I'm doing so That's why I wanted to put it out there Pre-race make it clear what my plan was You might have a good laugh at it it's Wrong and then tomorrow we'll see how it All went but I'm really looking forward To it I'm hoping for at least a few Hours it'll be very nice running in the Forest for people I know and generally Having a lovely time and then there Might be some a few hours of Unpleasantness but that's that'll be

Fine I'll get through that Hello who's Ellie We've just gone through Marathon Mark so We're just over halfway about 328 Marathon so far okay we're ticking along Around five okay Ellie knows what she's doing so I don't Feel too bad being with her even though It might be a bit fast and uh we're in Third and fourth right now one ladoff When it went off very quick yeah so far And he has Terry shoes pretty comfy very Good uh you know for this kind of pace Very steady slow pace and they're Rolling through nicely got no discomfort No worries about any squirrely bits on The slight rooty section we have on the Lap Uh but I'm going to change off this lap Gonna change into the Nike old fly If they feel a lot better I'll be Furious that I ran 30 miles in the other Shoes but I think they'll probably feel Quite similar anyway my arm's tired That'll probably be the last check until The answer Well I am done in not in terms of Distance unfortunately I've got 10 more Lap 10 more miles two more Loops uh but I'm completely blind like last lap was Legs awful but don't feel bad I feel Like I'd be running but my lungs are Completely gone just use mine hate less I'm hoping I'll be able to shuffle on

Chatting is where my really slow pace Where I still run but I think I'd Probably get towards seven and a half a K but Um at the moment for me to walk around Have an ice cream hope the inhaler makes You feel like I'm gonna take some deep Breaths and then I'll try and run again But two more laps Foreign All done I did manage to get around the Course I got my medal there I'm really Really pleased that I managed to achieve That I think I was basically just over Eight hours eight hours uh seven solid Laps with um Ellie who went on to win it Like an absolute Legend because she's Absolutely absolutely extraordinary um And just barely I think dropped her base Still with the last three lapsible Legend and then I um I had three laps Where you know MSA clap I almost stopped Because I just even walking was quite Short breath so I got back to the uh the Site with the drop bag and I used my Inhaler and then the ninth and tenth Laps okay like they were still really Slow like an hour I was jog walking Jogging walking but I could move a bit Better I wasn't worried I was doing any Damage to myself I did clock myself in The head quite early and it turned out I Did bleed but that wasn't bad it would Have blood it doesn't look any bad but

Yeah there's some other hanging branches You could look out for in the forest I Think I was fourth overall in third male So I will take that or basically I was Pure survival mode for three laps after Seven quite enjoyable apps as I hope so I wanted to get to about seven enjoyable Apps and see what happened from there And then it was it was a bit of a Struggle Um but I had a really good time learned A lot Um I don't think I maybe didn't learn That much about pacing because it's the Way I blew up I just I think I think I Just don't know if I've got out to not Blow up in those but could have gone out A bit slower I'm sure um but in general Just learned about myself learned about Some of the gear I used we'll talk about That again later I can't do that now Because I really need to shower and help Out with Summer child care but great day Congrats to Ellie Donald and Jason who Were one two three today and anyone who Ran it you know I was like boom I made Foo and wrath both ran Um Paul ran and I'm gonna forget people But basically running out this day it Was hot it was tough it was a just a Strong effort to be out there and uh With a 10 and a half hour cut off it's Gonna be quite tight I think so anyone Got through brilliant um great day out

Really nice event lovely Grassroots Event Um as all the Ryan Harris events are I Would say that um I'll talk more about That later I am just going to go shower Now and help out the kids thank you It is the day after the ultra now but a Bit of time to reflect on it and what Was a really Grand Day Out in the forest I had a really good time nothing but Good vibes about the event to be honest It was a lovely atmosphere among the Runners and supporters really well Organized uh just the perfect first Ultra for someone like myself well worn Tracks Five Mile Loops lots of people I Know I had a really good time all around And just delighted to have finished got It under my belt sorry a lot of things I Learned a couple of things looking back I definitely try and remember next time Would be to start walking Hills earlier It's walking while feeling good is a Hard thing to do and the hills aren't Particularly onerous in Epic Forest so I Felt like I could talk about them quite Easily but walking them maybe a couple Of laps earlier than I had to would have Been a smarter move to do I also noticed Like looking back that once I did start Walking I kind of stopped fueling and That's something that I think I carried Over a bit from Road running like if I Blew up in a marathon I wouldn't take

Any more gels I just get through to Finish but that would only normally be You know 20 30 minutes so yesterday I Had three hours of blow up I needed to Keep fueling probably taken a bit more Than I did might have made the last lap Or so feel a bit better but again Something to learn overall absolutely Delighted finished it got it done Fantastic Runners out there I got to run With and enjoy running with and then Watch disappear into the into the Distance as they finish much more Strongly than me but had a really good Time all around all right let's run Through some kit then so shoes so Obviously a lot of the time I was Running in the ultrafly yesterday I was Having a bit of a bad time only got one Good lap in it whereas I've got six good Laps in the Adidas Terex aggravate speed Ultra but I have run a 50k in the Nike In the past this summer so I can repair Them fairly well but some direct Comparisons from yesterday really Noticeable when I pulled on the ultrafly That it's a lot more uh notable on top The upper the padding at the back the Upper at the front feels thicker more Oppressive on the foot it's not always In a terrible way you know it's Cushioning it quite well it wasn't like Rubbing or uncomfortable but it's much Thicker a bit warmer and the ads has a

Really lightweight upper but it still Felt really comfortable and supportive Throughout the Run had no rubbing at all From the shoe or either shoe actually in Fact my one of my big toenails is a bit Bruised but that I expected like it's Not too bad so really Comfort wise both Shoes felt really really good Terex Feels lighter all around it is lighter Around but it also feels Fair bit Lighter it's got a much more turnover to It it feels like you can keep ticking Over a bit more comfortably in it Compared to the Nike and that wasn't Just because of yesterday I think in General it feels like a slightly faster Shoe not that I was trying to run fast Yesterday but it felt that even actually Running at slow Paces turning over felt Quite easy in it but I he still feels Good for that kind of thing and I enjoy Shuffling through my run in Wales in it But I think you've got a bit more of a Lighter shoe a slightly more uh Speedy Shoe in the Terex Ultra in a way that Carries over two very long distances as Well it just means you can keep turning Your legs over quite well in it I found So yeah in those first six laps in the NES I felt really nice really fluid did Feel like I was rolling through really Nicely we were aiming for around 5K a Minute mile something like that and it Just you know ticked over riding the

Bumps in the course so slower up the Hills and then faster downhills there's Good shoe going downhill like it wasn't Anything particularly technical Yesterday so I suppose my big fear with The ALS is the narrow base you have There especially around the pinch point In the middle actually didn't notice Didn't come into play at all and hasn't Really all my runs in it I've not been Running very technical to earning it and Maybe that'll be more of a concern for Me if I was coming on a steep Rocky Descent I'd be a bit more worried about The narrowness of the back there whereas The Nike feels much more stable and Grounded gives you that big wide Platform to land on but yeah that's the Greatest I had no worries about it at All felt like I was really in control Running in it and it was giving a nice Solid base on the forefoot to land Safely or you know roll through from my Heel onto and then get a nice bit of Propulsion from the lightweight foam in The midsole there so yeah I do think They're an excellent shoot I really like Them we'll have a full review coming Obviously I think they're a better Actually all around here than when I First tested them when I was a bit more Worried about the instability there I Think if I was on a very Rocky twisty Course with lots of uh tricky to symptom

Tips I'm not a great descender I'm a bit Novice in this area I feel like the Nike Is a bit more of a friendly shoe I think It will support people a bit better at The same time I think yeah that is a Slightly faster shoe if you're on Runnable Trails I think it gives you a Bit more oomph and it rolls through Really nicely I think if you are an Experienced Trail Runner Mountain Runner You're probably fine with it on any kind Of terrain but I do think the Nike is a Little bit more accessibility in terms Of the rider providers because it is Very stable and grounded with the extra Width you have in it talking about the Watches and the heart rate monitor not Too much to say here both performed Really really well like the distance was Slightly different I'd 83.25 K on the Garmin and 82.75 on the chorus I think It's like lesson of course but really Half a k over over 80k it really isn't Very much at all we can see on the GPS Trace I think the chorus gets slightly Wobbly around the tree cover and it cuts Corners slightly more often maybe than The Garmin but actually who's to say What was really right over that distance Wasn't like it wasn't exactly measured Five Mile Loop it was very close to that And obviously it was a bit long in the End the ultra so I'd say those performed Really well on GPS that's multi-band

Mode for both of them good accurate Stuff I wasn't pacing each individual Kilometer I had like my lap Pace up for Each lap and they were both showing very Similar numbers so page three really Feels very strong on GPS compared to What we've seen from Chorus in the past In particular the battery life and the Watch is really quite good as well you Know these are multi-band watches so It's using quite a lot of GPS the epics Pro is obviously a much bigger watch has More room for battery but it has the AMOLED screen so the ethics Pro started At 97 dropped to 79 after eight hours of Running and the chorus pastry started at 99 and then dropped to 57 so really Getting through an eight hour run very Very comfortably with no concerns about Um the battery life dying because you Using that multiband GPS I'm fueling my Fuel plan in the end was kind of made up As I went along but I had a lot of stuff With me so Kieran actually mentioned to Me the day before the race maybe I Should still aim for like 60 grams of Carbs per hour even though I wasn't Running as hard as if I was doing a Marathons so I was trying to hit roughly That number each lap I had one of these These chews from OTE which are 23 grams Of carbs there's an apple flavor and a Strawberry flavor don't really like Strawberry flavor I don't tend to like

Strawberry things in general though Apple flavor is very Appley which is uh Nice but also quite intense but I found These were quite good to get down so More or less at the start of each lap I Had two one of these or hold it in my Mouth let it dissolve a little bit it Was easy enough to get down despite that It is quite solid when taking over at a Quite gentle Pace like I say around 5K I Was able to chew those and eat those Quite comfortably then for the rest of The lap I had the OTE Supercar crimps Drinks mix in a bottle and I was going Through probably about one bottle every Two laps so probably a little bit less Than 20 grams of carbs from the bottle On each lap and then um and then having Some Pringles and Coke back every aid Station so all in all I was probably Getting less than 60 grams of cards an Hour and like I said I probably should Have kept fueling a bit later into the Run but I was pretty happy around with The nutrition I had stomach felt okay Throughout the whole thing a few moments Of slight nausea but I don't know if That was down to the stuff I was eating Or the general fact I was running far Further and far longer than I ever had Done before so I was happy with all that Stuff I think it's a good range dot Range for Ultras because it is good has Got some flavor to it there's

Electrolytes added to lots of stuff it's A bit less intense I'd say than the Morton stuff I tend to use the road Marathons which is very neutral flavors It feels very very performance focused Like you're putting it in as fuel you're Doing it very calculated and just using That to power through uh something like A marathon I did have some water and Drink yesterday at times but it's a bit Thicker I think a bit less suited for That very long range effort for me I Think I prefer the slightly more Flavorful tasty stuff from otu for that And these chews I think are really good Because they're very small and thin it's 23 grams of carbs they're quite easy to Get down they don't seem to upset my Stomach so yeah I like those a lot a big Fan of those and then the kit in general I've got no complaints I saw stuff I've Tested before but I was out there for Eight hours I was really comfortable the Whole time like the sore t-shirt I used No running no chafing same with the SIM Out of shorts it's all like tried and Tested gear but you know it's good to Test it over that kind of distance and Time as well because it was just as Comfortable as I'd expect and hope even A trail running back from the catalon Really is very good like it's a fair bit Cheaper than lots of the other bags I've Tested but it performs really well I'll

Pop a link in the caption because the Names of decathlon are quite hard to get Exactly right but easily carried all the Stuff I need with me you've got the Three adjustable straps on the front There um which for iPhone was great like It just means I could just tighten them Slightly as my water bottles in the Front of the backpack went down and say That there's not a load of adjustable Other adjustment options on the bag but It fits me quite well straight away when I pulled it on it was a couple of size Options so maybe if you don't get on one The size is straight away it might be Slightly harder to get a great fit Because other bags have a bit more Adjustment around the sides and back but I had no concerns with that I prefer to Use only one 500 milliliter bottle in The front of the running backpack with That backpack and then the other one I Have a smaller software like 360 Milliliters because with two 500s it did Feel a bit jumpy at the front there so I Tended to use a slightly smaller soft Flask in one thing but then not Necessarily going to be a problem for Everyone actually Jason the guy finished Academy in third was also using this Backpack so really no complaints of at All it's a great backpack for the money There loads of storage easier to carry All the essential gear in the back there

Wasn't loads of that for this uh Ultra Obviously it was a fairly warm day on The loops course but still it was really Comfortable not much bouncing didn't Annoy me at all for the entire length of The ultra or indeed the f51k I ran in Wales using it so all around pretty Positive all around like I'm just happy I'm just happy I did it uh got through And I really I didn't think I was Necessarily going to do it at one point On the run and I thought that'd be Really frustrating to have some Unfinished business and have to go and Do another one because the plan now is To go back some short fast stuff on the Road for the foreseeable future now that You know I'm not it's not a new baby Anymore I've still got a very young kid But he's not a new baby I didn't really Want to put too much pressure myself This summer and this Ultra on home turf In Epping forest was exactly the kind of Thing I did want to do so had a great Time I highly recommend it I'm sure It'll come back next year come and give It a go 10 laps is a little lapse but It's great fun really well supported Really well organized yeah great day out And well done again everyone who ran