Team Petzl athletes run at night with REACTIVE LIGHTING technology…
Anton Krupicka, Nathalie Mauclair, and Sébastien Chaigneau, trail ultra-marathon runners you say? Absolutely! But did you know that all of them use a headlamp with REACTIVE LIGHTING technology? For your benefit, each has shared their approach to what is required when running at night, explaining why and how they use headlamps with REACTIVE LIGHTING. It is a simple question of performance, weight, and comfort… So let all three guide you in planning your upcoming nighttime outings!
June 17 2015
"ANTON KRUPICKA: a nighttime awakening with the NAO…"
You've tested the NAO and REACTIVE LIGHTING technology—what do you think? And why is this technology an improvement for trail runners?
"I was genuinely surprised by the NAO when I first began using it. REACTIVE LIGHTING technology allows for unprecedented battery life - I can run all night on a single charge - while still offering abundant lumens for when you need them most. No more disposable batteries, no more fumbling with changing these batteries in the dark; really, it's a huge improvement over existing lighting systems for mountain adventures."
What are some important things to consider (for safety, performance, etc.) when running in the dark??
"For me, I find that if I don't concentrate on remaining alert, it is easy to get lulled into sleepiness and complacency when staring into the same bubble of light for hours on end. To combat this, I try to remain engaged by constantly being aware of my surroundings and frequently lifting my head to scan the path several dozen of meters ahead, instead of just focusing on the trail right in front of me. Conveniently, REACTIVE LIGHTING technology in the NAO headlamp assists with this process because when I lift my head to anticipate the upcoming terrain or trail the light automatically boosts, giving me an even better view. Traditional constant lighting requires either manually boosting the beam when looking into the distance or simply running without that perspective."
"NATHALIE MAUCLAIR: the TIKKA RXP brightens her UTMB® dreams"
Nathalie Mauclair and her daughter at the end of UTMB® 2014.
What headlamp do you use for the UTMB®?
"I usually use the NAO headlamp with the battery belt since I don't like having too much weight on my head. It is an extraordinary headlamp with unparalleled lighting power. However, this time around I'd like to test the new TIKKA RXP, which is also equipped with REACTIVE LIGHTING technology. For an ultra, I'm always looking to shave off a few grams where I can. My decision to use the TIKKA RXP is primarily for weight savings without having to sacrifice too much in terms of lighting performance."
How do you program your headlamp?
"I let my husband program my headlamp! He's the computer expert."
What is your fondest night-race memory?
"I love running at sunset and sunrise, two vital moments of the day. But one of my most memorable nighttime experiences was during the 2011 RAID IN FRANCE. Guillaume, Alex, Raph, and I were canoeing down the Drôme River. I was poorly equipped this time around and navigating through the night was difficult. Yet it was simply amazing every time we approached a village! When night falls, you get the impression that everything shrinks. Light gave us hope at our slowed-down pace."
You ran with the TIKKA RXP. What do think of this headlamp?
"I chose to use the TIKKA RXP instead of the NAO to save weight. I set it on a single program with a wide beam to ensure a relatively long burn time. The headlamp performed well throughout the race. Even in the fog, I didn't have any problems. One detail that I really appreciated was how comfortable it is to wear. I often wear some sort of running-designed bandana underneath my headlamp to eliminate any uncomfortable pressure points. This time around, I didn't need to."
"SEB CHAIGNEAU: NAO and the butterfly effect…"
Seb Chaigneau encourages kids by signing autographs on "mini" bib numbers.
What headlamp do you use for ultramarathons?
"The NAO®!! It's the best in terms of both lighting power and burn times. I also carry the E+ Lite as a backup lamp."
How do you use REACTIVE LIGHTING technology?
"I don't necessarily use the pre-programmed profiles from the OS by Petzl software. I prefer the simplicity of the ON/OFF mode. I learned the ins and outs of how the headlamp operates during my training runs. By playing with the lamp's tilt angles, I realized that the lighting modes didn't change as often, which allowed me to gain up to an additional 45 minutes of burn time without any loss in lighting quality or power."
What do you think of the latest version of the NAO®?
"The NAO® already offered unrivaled lighting power when compared to other lamps, but with the latest version, it's out of this world! It takes lighting power and burn time to the next level."
How about a quick story about lighting during a night race?
"I remember one outing (this was a training run for me) where I was testing the capacity of my new headlamp. The battery ended up giving me trouble and the lighting intensity dropped off all of a sudden. I was on a technical course and fortunately I had a backup lamp. At that very moment I truly understood that a headlamp is a runner's best friend during a night race. It's really stressful to run without light. I've also noticed this during races… I remember the first race that I ran using the ULTRA headlamp. At the time the lighting power of this lamp was revolutionary in the nighttime trail running world! It was reassuring… the NAO® has had the same impact!!"
This year was a difficult one for you, especially with regard to your health due to severely dehydrating at the Transgrancanaria. Do you have any projects for the tail end of the season?
"Indeed, I experienced rhabdomyolysis and then caught mono. I had to accept my weakened physical state and that my energy level could drop off all of a sudden. This is what happened at the HARDROCK 100, after 80 kilometers I had nothing left in the gas tank! I plan to finish out the season with shorter races: Belle Île en Mer, the Canary Islands, and why not San Francisco. I need to get back to enjoying running."