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Showing posts from October, 2017

92 In The Shade, When You Found It

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No Name 5030 is a serious course, not for the faint of heart or armchair bad-asses. It’s harsh out there, and tough as fuck. No water or shade, with convection heat and dehydration as your ever-present serious friends. For those studs who bang this 50k in 4+ hrs— you are truly amazing.

I don’t recommend this as a first-time 50k for most people. There are many long and lonely stretches between aid stations. For me it was a super-harsh 31 mile training run that drew on every last thing I’d ever learned. 
TOTAL PROPSThe Shuttle van. Oh Jesus. Richard deserves a medal on this one. 

Volunteers out in the middle of nowhere. 

Mike Epler humping water up to that forsaken Albertson’s Motorway ridge at 22 miles. I topped off because I assumed that the water-only meant somebody would be there, not a lonely water drop later at Mile 26. The following canyon is serious as a heart attack, and to be dismissed at your peril. Got my attention, no kidding.

On the final mile climb to the finish out of Chesebr…

Hello Burnout, My Old Friend

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Everyone is mystified why modern ultra Bobs & Betties burn out after 3 years. Every new crop of young champions rise, burn brightly, then fall out of the heavens back into darkness, as everyone stares at their phones. Jason Koop has some sharp observations on this.

It boils down to race proliferation, #FOMO, social media, and sponsors wanting max exposure.  If you look at Ann Trason’s peak career, or Tim Twietmeyer you’ll see they didn’t race all the time. Or maybe some races didn’t make it into the database.

Ultras have changed mightily in thirty years. What used to be low-rent is now high dollar on both ends of the spectrum. We’ve gone from aluminum lawn chairs and a stopwatch to blowup arches and timing chips.

Here’s the arc: hot young Bob or Betty wins a name ultra. They become a social-media influencer. Winning is a stoke, kid you not. And they race. And race. The season never stops.

Eventually exhaustion sets in. The runner in question begins to realize its hard wo…