Tune Out Your Run Tech to Get More Reliable
How to Finish a 100-Mile Race Despite the Odds
A client recently asked, “How do I know how fast to run in my 100-mile race?”
After running over 100 of them, this comes naturally to me but I clearly remember wondering the exact same thing before my first 100.
I tired to imagine covering the distance and couldn’t, so I had no reference for imagining what the running would be like.
Seven Ways to Find the Cheerleader You Wish You Had
Two years ago, on the morning of the Kettle Moraine 100 in Wisconsin, I overslept.
I rolled up 20 minutes late. Not much in the scheme of a 100-mile race and I’d finished the year before with more than that to spare so I knew I could do it.
“Can I still start?” I asked.
Where Are the Women?
Frustrated by friends and family that don’t support your goals?
It’s hard to pursue something as ambitious as a first marathon, 100-mile race, or a year's worth of 100s when you’re not getting the emotional support you expect. Someone important to you asking about a long run, wanting to hear about your race, celebrating a hard-earned race performance, or congratulating you on an award.
That type of thing.
What Could Possibly Go Wrong in a 100-Miler?
Last July, I ran Cry Me A River 100-miler, in Illinois.
I decided to run it at the last minute so my 100th 100-mile race would be at Superior Sawtooth 100 in September. I emailed the race director and she said to show up.
The night before the race, I arrived at packet pickup and signed up.
Don't Quit Until They Pull You
Short answer: More than you'd imagine.
Long answer: Where to start...
Years ago, the engineer in me, in the long miles of some 100, came up with a kind of elegant answer. It's a general formula of all the variables that must go right, or at least well enough - all at the same time - for you to finish a 100-miler.
What you need (and don’t) to be a real ultrarunner
In 2002 at the Leadville 100 in Colorado, I crossed 12,600-foot Hope Pass and arrived at the 50-mile aid station in Winfield to be told I was only 15 minutes ahead of cutoff.
I’d heard the same thing at the same aid station the previous year, and dropped. This year, I’d done my best to push the pace to Winfield. Last year wasn’t going to happen again…except it did.
Why Your Training Might Not Be Built to Last (And How to Fix It)
I want to clear up a giant misconception I hear a LOT about what you need to be a “real” ultrarunner.
Let’s start with a partial list in no particular order of what you DON'T need to have, do, or be:
Stop Agonizing Over What You Want
Confession: I don’t have a training plan.
At least not a conventional one.
Here’s three reasons why.
Why Genes Aren't Everything
In 1977, I was moving through middle school without much direction. None of the school clubs or teams interested me. I preferred to read, or run around the neighborhood with my friends.
Until someone told me about an upcoming tryout for the track team.
Why "Best of" Lists Aren't Everything
“How did you not die??”
I laughed. I’d just told the woman I was running side by side with in the early miles of the Long Haul 100 that I’d finished over one hundred 100-mile races.
She stopped mid trail, turned to look at me full length and said, “Of course. You look like a runner!”
It was a compliment but it was also an assumption that implied, “You lucked out and got the right genes.”
It’s that time of year.
Ultrarunning Magazine's “Ultrarunners of the Year” edition is out. It’s packed with lists of top, best, and notable performances, some of which include friends of mine who definitely deserve the recognition.
But when I flip through list after list after list, I remember why I stopped paying attention to them years ago.
Rankings are a double-edged sword. They can inspire but they can also stoke the critic in your head.