Elena Komova – run smart – win strong


  1. You won the 65km in a very impressive manner last year what made you decide to up the distance?
    • I really enjoyed the challenge of the 65 km race and I wanted to come back to the Formosa race to run the huge climb that I missed out on last year.
  2. What was your strategy for the race? Did you follow it or did you have to adjust along the way?
    • My strategy was to run my own race. I tried to conserve my energy and run smart. It was my longest distance yet, and I made sure I took my time at the check points to hydrate and eat real food.
  3. What makes you come back to Formosa Trail?
    • The Taiwanese running community, huge climbs, very well organized race and incredible views made me come back to Formosa Trail.
  4. You recently married. Whats about your husband did he enjoy Formosa Trail and weekend in central Taiwan?
    • I’m lucky to have such a great, supportive husband who survived a few training runs with me. When he saw how much I really loved the race last year, he even agreed to run it himself this year. We actually saw each other on the trail and were able to run a short segment together. It was a great boost for both of us to take our minds off the climb for a little bit.
  5. You live in Okinawa. How did you prepare for running in Formosa Trail?
    • Okinawa does not have the elevation or lengthy trails that Taiwan offers, so I did a lot of hill repeats. I am really lucky to have a great group of running friends and we are able to push each other through early mornings and long runs.
  6. Can you describe your week training regime? Is there some tip for us to get stronger and faster on long distances?
    • I have been on a running program for about three months, running anywhere from 40-60 miles per week, focusing more on effort than on speed. The majority of my runs were at an easy pace, with short speed workouts at the end of the run. I usually take Mondays off and do my long runs on the weekends.
  7. How does running in Taiwan compare to your regular training grounds?
    • Trails in Taiwan are very technical and require a lot of coordination to navigate. I love the scenery running through the trails- the coffee farms, banana trees and small villages. It is certainly very different and unique from Okinawa.
  8. It is long race. What was your nutrition strategy?
    • Nutrition and hydration were tied closely into my race strategy. For nutrition, I have Runivore bars and huma gels, in addition to the food at the checkpoints. For hydration, I used nuun tablets and Tailwind.
  9. Do you have some recommendation for runners travelers coming to Taiwan races?
    • It is a great and beautiful race. Make sure you train for elevation and time on your feet. Train hard, but don’t forget to enjoy the incredible views.


  • Elena Komova (Skarzynski)
  • 104k Formosa Trail 2017 (1st, 2nd overall, 16:55:52)
  • 65k Formosa Trail 2016 (1st, 2nd overall, 10:44:43)
  • Ultra-Trail® D’angkor 2017 – Bayon Trail Angkor 64 Km (1st, 6:22:39)