Tips for the Challenge St. Pölten from ast year’s winner Tom Hug

Are you facing the challenge of preparing optimally for the Challenge St. Pölten? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Every year, numerous athletes ask themselves how they can best prepare for this event. Don’t panic – last year’s winner Tom Hug has shared his best tips with us to help you get the most out of your training and race.


Acclimatize to colder water: As water temperatures can sometimes be low in May, it’s important to prepare in advance. Tom recommends doing some open water sessions in a cold lake to acclimatize to the temperatures.

Head protection: Wear a second swim cap under the official race cap to give your head extra protection.

Wetsuit check: Be sure to test your wetsuit in training before the race to make sure it fits perfectly.



Incorporate mountain training:Prepare yourself for the challenging climbs and around 1000 meters of altitude on the route with specific mountain training.

Get to know the technical sections of the route: If possible, explore the technical sections of the route, especially the descents – e.g. on the bike ride on April 28. If an advance ride is not possible, study the route profile and map carefully and watch videos on platforms such as YouTube to get an impression of the terrain. Of course, you can also get to know the bike route on Rouvy.

Save energy for the longest climb: Ride at a reasonable pace and save energy for the longest climb, which starts at around the 64th kilometer.

Sufficient fluids and carbohydrates: Make sure you stay hydrated throughout the bike course and consume at least 60-90g of carbohydrates per hour to maintain energy for the run.



Start moderately: at 21 km, starting too fast can slow you down later on. Start relaxed, find your rhythm and only increase your pace if you feel good towards the end.

Use aid stations: Stop at aid stations for refreshments and adjust your hydration to the weather conditions.

Enjoy the atmosphere: Imagine the finish line and enjoy the magical atmosphere. The support of the spectators along the course will give you some extra energy.

Be proud of your achievement: Every step you take during the race is a step towards your goal. Celebrate your achievements and draw on the positive energy of the spectators.

With these tips in mind, you can prepare yourself optimally for Challenge St. Pölten and give your best. Good luck!