Interview with Yosi Goasdoué, French half-marathon champion
by The Circle Team on 18 February 2021

Romain Trébuil - Co-founder Circle Sportswear

Today I interview Yosi Goasdoué, French half-marathon champion and Circle ambassador.

We talk about sport, confinement and motivation.

How do you manage your training during these times of stress?

Paradoxically, quite well! In contrast to last March's lockdown, this time the government is allowing high-level professional athletes to train wherever they want, whenever they want.

It makes you feel privileged compared to the rest of the population, so you really take advantage of this opportunity to train seriously and efficiently.

Did you observe any differences in the level of athletes from different countries after the March 2020 lockdown?

The Spanish athletes have had a very difficult confinement, without temporary sports authorisation. But overall, I don't really feel any difference in results... but results are scarce at the moment, with the lack of races since the summer that followed.

You were staying at the Château de la Bourdaisière last March, I believe. What was the reason for this?

The Château de la Bourdaisière wanted to showcase its permaculture know-how in sports. I was asked to collaborate on the creation of a sports course on the estate, and it was at the time of the health crisis at the beginning of the year that I asked the owner of the property to accommodate me so that I could continue to train outdoors rather than on a treadmill, even though we had no authorisation. He agreed!

What are your next sporting goals?

The Paris Half Marathon in September 2021 is on my radar... Despite the current situation regarding the health crisis, I want to believe that the race will be maintained...

In general, we look for a period of eight months to take advantage of a peak in form in professional competition, and the Paris half-marathon will take place in... eight months! So this will be an opportunity to test yourself at your best.

The objective would be to do under 1h03. But there are many unknowns, after not competing for several months, knowing your body and your performance...

How do you explain your preference for the half marathon over the marathon?

The two do not require the same preparation at all! When I prepare for a half-marathon, I run on average between 160 and 170 km per week. For a marathon, I would have to aim for 200 or even 220 km per week; it's a completely different physical investment.

I personally feel that I can still learn something about the half marathon. Going straight to the marathon would of course mean gaining endurance, but also losing speed. You have to be sure that you have optimised your performance before switching from one discipline to another, otherwise you risk losing capacity.

You have to appreciate this chronological process of 5000m, 10,000m, half and then marathon, in order to take full advantage of your physical form. For a long-distance runner, the marathon is the summit, so it also potentially means the end of your career!

A more difficult question than the previous ones: how to reconcile running and Mardi Gras pancakes?

That's the question! But these moments are important to share, especially this year after not being able to really see each other for several months...

If you are training at the moment, take the opportunity to push yourself to the level of kilometres covered, without necessarily increasing the intensity, in order to burn calories that will come back quickly with the pancakes. My advice: let yourself go, but maintain a good sports and eating routine during this period.

I also advise you to run on an empty stomach, after your night's sleep. Your training will directly burn the calories stored in the body and not yet used. A 20 to 40 minute run, without straining, will be perfect for your fitness!

A lot of French people started running during this first confinement... unfortunately many have stopped since. What advice would you give to budding sportsmen and women to take up sport and, above all, to continue to practice?

It must be admitted that during this confinement, sport was mostly appreciated as an outlet. We were out of time, we had all this free time... After 11 May, the rhythm of work resumed, and sport was not really a priority.

But sport is like going to the doctor: you make an appointment and go. To be consistent in practising sport, you have to fit this new activity into your schedule, and stick to it! Even just one appointment in a week will make all the difference in continuing to do sport in the long term.

Some tips for good sports resolutions that last in 2021?

We were talking about "appointments" with yourself. In 2021, make an appointment at the beginning of each month for a challenge or a race.

This will keep the good resolutions on track, and after several weeks of regular and frequent training, the body will normally follow: it will be used to it.

If possible, try to train in a group, running with friends.

One last piece of advice: don't think too big from the start. Want to run three times in your first week? Only go for one run: a minimum threshold below which you will not go. This is another technique to keep you active!