Passionated Mountain- and Trailrunner from Oberstdorf

Jojo, how and when did you get started?
There's no concrete time for me since I've walked. Rather, it is a process or logical consequence. As a little boy I got to know and love the Oberstdorf mountains through my parents. At that time I was still a 'classic' hiker with fixed mountain boots. Over the years the tours got bigger and bigger, I got fitter and faster and the equipment more and more minimalistic. Finally I started running in the mountains at some point. This process continues to this day and I hope this passion will last as long as possible. But there's one thing I know for sure, whether I'm running or just walking, I will never lose my love and passion for the mountains and nature!

Why is trailrunning/mountain running the ideal sport for you?
When I look out the window in the morning, it's always the answer for me. If you have the mountains right in front of your front door, you want to go there and explore the nature right away. Running makes this possible for me and the ingenious thing about Oberstdorf and its surroundings is that I can combine it with altitude or simply run flat in the valley.

What's so special about trailrunning and mountain running?
You can run and feel nature in the most intensive way. For me, that's the core and the fascinating thing. The body and the mind are challenged with every step to tackle the height meters and at the same time to move with the greatest precision and caution in the terrain. If you are really in this state with your thoughts, I forget all the remaining ballast and the problems that everyday life brings with it and I am only in this moment, in the here and now. That's life for me and just being human.

What run was your toughest competition?
I can't answer that so sweepingly. No matter whether mountain run, which is finished in less than 1 hour or an Ultratrail, over half a day and more. These challenges require very different approaches and conditions. In addition there are things like the weather, the current shape of the day and so a competition is sometimes quite spontaneous and unforeseen. I always try to give my best, because then I can be satisfied with at least one person and that's me :-).

What was your most beautiful mountain running moment?
Is there? There are so many for me. Every run gives me beautiful moments, that's why I travel so much. This of course also applies to competitions like the Nebelhornberglauf. The events in the homeland are particularly beautiful because they are the homeland mountains and so many friends and acquaintances support you along the way. I am just grateful for these moments and experiences!

What was your greatest sporting success?
I must honestly say, I don't want to throw much around with my sporting successes. If you're really interested, of course I'll tell you everything in detail or follow me on my social channels, but for me the competitions are only one element of this great construct: running in the mountains and nature.

What sporting goals have you set yourself for the next few years?
The most important goal for me is to keep the joy of running, because that is of course the motivation basis. And to stay healthy in order to really pursue my goals. The rest comes automatically. I have some competitions in the Alps and all over the world on the list which I would like to experience and also privately there are so many summits and routes which appeal to me. The nice thing is, these goals are not running away from me, so I will certainly not get bored in the coming years.

What's your favorite mountain run around Oberstdorf?
There is a lot out there, but one trail I especially like, the Schattenbergtrail, always true to the motto: Run steep, get high ;-).

If you don't run, what do you do?
In summer I am on my way in the Alps as a mountain hiking guide and lead my guests from hut to hut at a very slow and comfortable pace.
In my spare time I don't do much except running and occasionally mountain biking in the valleys of Oberstdorf. If I have too much free time, I am the classic fridge plunderer and I love chocolate too much, that's why I probably go out into nature so much :-).

Do you have a special tip for mountain run beginners?
But for sure - approach this topic calmly and SLOWLY. I still remember well my first meters of altitude at a fast pace. The story is told quickly, because wasn't that many meters. Less is more, one should start with small, relatively flat hills and build on them to further increase. Oberstdorf offers the ideal terrain to get a taste of this area.


Johannes Klein
Trailrunner und Bergwanderführer
aus Oberstdorf


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