Massi is Mile 27’s Italian connection. When he joined Mile 27 eighteen months ago he had never run an ultra but now has several finishes in tough technical ultra trail races with lots of vertical. Only a stomach problem stopped him finishing the recent gruelling Laverado Ultra trail 199km.
He is a great example that with hard work and belief you can step outside your comfort zone and achieve things that you felt were impossible.
HOW DID YOU FIRST GET INTERESTED IN THE SPORT?
I have been a runner for many years, asphalt bored me, so started to run on trails. The sound of the woods, the scented resin of the trees, the wonderful landscapes … everything made me feel welcome I and started to feel like I was a part of it. I reconnected with nature and wanted to run more and more.
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE RACE SO FAR?
Dolomiti Extreme Ultratrail, my first ultramarathon. I trained for months, in the rain, with the hot sun, waking up when everyone else was still sleeping. All of these things made me stronger and confident, crossing the finish line meant I was an Ultramarathoner, crossing that finish line meant I was a new man.
WHAT IS ONE OF YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MOMENTS FROM A RACE?
Finishing my last ultramarathon: after 75 km and 4.350m D+ I ran the last meters and crossed the finish line with my son Samuel. Felt like I could go for another ultra!
WHAT DO YOU FEEL HAS BEEN YOUR BIGGEST ULTRAMARATHON ACHIEVEMENT SO FAR?
My growth, as athlete and as a man.
WHAT IS ON YOUR RACING BUCKETLIST?
UTMB first of all, then I’d love to run in Scotland and Iceland. Anyway I live near the Alps, and there are so many races here!
WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNT FROM ULTRAMARATHONS? WHAT HAVE THEY TAUGHT YOU ABOUT LIFE AND YOURSELF?
I learnt that whatever I want to do I have to be persistent and consistent. Ultramarathon seems to be an individual sport, and when you are alone on the trails it is, but if you want to succeed you need a team. I am so lucky to have Andy of Mile 27 in my team, and also Francesca, my loving and supportive partner.
Ultramarathons taught me that our limits are so much more than we think. Limits are there just to be pushed a little further away.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF TRAINING?
I usually like to push hard, so hill reps are my favourite part of the training.
HOW DO YOU FEEL YOU HAVE BENEFITED FROM TRAINING WITH MILE 27?
Since I train with Mile 27 I became a better and stronger runner, and this made me also a better person. No more injuries, and a constant feeling of improvement. Mile 27 has helped me to get the “getting things done” attitude and of course this is great not only for running, but for every aspect of my life. Training with Mile 27 also taught me that doing my best sometimes is not enough, if I want to reach my goals I have to do what is required.
WHAT IS THE ONE TIP YOU WOULD GIVE A FELLOW ATHLETE TO HELP THEM ENJOY THE EXPERIENCE OF RUNNING AN ULTRA MORE?
Find your uphill and fall in love with it. Be bold, always ask yourself: “How can I make the difference here?”.
Know deeply that you are going to become the better and stronger version of yourself. Find a big “why”, the “hows” will come, be an example for others.
WHAT IS YOUR NEXT RACE?
The Ultra Trail Lago d’Orta 90km 5790 D+.