The Hout Bay Trail Challenge is one of the toughest, most beautiful trail runs in Cape Town. It is between 36km – 40km of high intensity, rugged terrain that doesn’t give you a break for the entire duration. You need to get to the start line well prepared!

Tim Ellerbeck from Velocity Sports Lab has put together a 10 week training programme included with some general trail running tips for runners. This is specifically designed for the trail running novice wanting to challenge themselves on the Hout Bay Trail Challenge, but can quite easily be adapted for the intermediate and advanced runner.

The first month focuses on setting a base from which to work. We start with some gentle speed work and hill repeats, and get you to spend up to an hour and a half on the trails. Next month we focus on building some more endurance and spending more and more time on the trails, training ascents and descents.

The training programme is broken into 3 blocks

If you have any questions on the training programmes or would like a more specific training programme for yourself, please drop Tim an email ( and he will be able to help you.

A little bit about Tim - Sport Scientist

Tim has a passion for the outdoors and in particular endurance sports. Seven years of endless summer travelling the world and competing as a professional kayaker and raft guide finally lead to a university path in Sport Science. After graduating with an honours degree in Sport Science from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU), the progression to a Master’s degree followed which is still underway – specializing in endurance in sport and sport biomechanics.

As a competitive athlete with several Ironman races, countless triathlons, Dusi canoe marathons, and other races under his belt, Tim brings a wealth of practical and theoretical knowledge to the VSL facility. High-performance or rehabilitation is fast tracked through the integration of the AlterG Anti-Gravity Treadmill, Compu-trainers, Wattbike or by implementation of individualized training programs.