So this is going to be one of those posts where I just shot from the hip and kind of update the world on where I'm at, how I'm feeling and what lies ahead. Life is throwing me a handful of changes as of late.. mostly good changes of course and some rather exciting. Everything, in a way, relates to my mission for this year to return to my roots. Let's just get into it.
In this post we'll talk a little more about how the streak went. We'll talk about the exciting success of this years Winter Expeditions/Fat Ass events here in the Front Range. I have news about May's Rim2Rim2Rim run in the Grand Canyon, My 100 Miler Schedule is set, so we'll look at that; and finally a look at motivation during these long, down, days of February.
January went extremely well as I completed another successful year of streaking (failed in 2010). It was a lot easier then it's been in years past thought, not without it coming with the rough days. In the end I set a new personal best for consecutive days run at 34, and miles run during a streak at 140.2 miles. The streak had the most participants yet and the most complete streakers as well. So, I'm hopeful and excited about that. Unfortunately, as I write this post, I haven't run since day 34 of the Streak (Saturday) and have enjoyed the time off.. but now it's truly time to get to work.
I joined up with over 40 folks for the Southside 50K in january and a week later hosted my first Front Range Fat Ass. I was pleased to have ten folks start with us for the Frozen Front Range Marathon/Sanitarado. That's the most folks I've ever had show up for one of my Fat Ass events and many of them were total strangers. What's even more exciting is that the next event is coming up on February 18th as we run from Nederland to Boulder. Currently, seven runners have signed on, not including myself. I'm really excited that folks have decided to take a chance and join in on these Fat Ass/Journey runs. I've even started getting a few replies from folks looking to join in for the 100K in March regardless of distance they want to run.
The "Grand" Adventure
I really pleased to announce that the Grand Canyon Adventure is on for May 19th. I'll be heading down to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon where I'll be camping for two nights. Saturday of this weekend, I'll be running a Rim2Rim2Rim adventure which consists of a 50 mile run all told. I'm even more excited for this adventure as I welcome some company to join me on this adventure as well. Ultra-youngin's who are training for Leadville and are looking to hear some of my favorite 100 mile tales along the way.
My 100 Mile schedule for the year is set and I'm incredibly excited for the adventures that await. After not getting in to The Hardrock 100, I knew that this year would once again need to include running a difficult 100 Miler that counts as a Hardrock Qualifier. Since the first year I've run 100s, I've managed to finish one of these qualifying races (Grand Teton, MMT (2), Western States, Leadville). 19 Races have made the qualifying list for Hardrock. One of them is the Barkley so many would prefer to not count it. Another is in France and the likelihood of my going to France is about the same as me finishing the Barkley. Chiemgauer is in Germany (See France), and the Grand Teton 100 no longer exists. So this leaves 15 one-hundred milers that qualify, 3 of which I've completed.
When deciding what to do this year, I knew I wanted to return to my mountain roots. If I was going to run any 100 milers, it needs to be as tough or tougher then Massanutten. A Race I've run twice. Massanutten was a race that took me 6 months to recover from MENTALLY. And even then, I knew that I wanted to run again, but in a way that made it somehow tougher. So I did it the following year in the Stonewall Jackson Division. I was equally as wrecked.. and fulfilled. And so, this year will being with the Big Horn 100 in Dayton, WY. On the list of 100s ranked by difficulty, Big Horn is the next notch below Massanutten with over 17,000' of elevation gain and another 17,000' of loss over the course of 100 Wild and Scenic miles.
But my year doesn't stop there. After what is sure to be an epic summer of racing and life changes; I'm heading to the Wasatch Front 100. Wasatch will undoubtably be the toughest race I've ever competed in. 100 miles and over 26,000' of gain and another 26,000' of loss; it's hard to believe that Wasatch is the next toughest 100 on the difficulty scale, just one notch above Massanutten. I'm both excited and.. scared.
Which brings me to my friend Matthew Allen. After an MMA fight and some midnight snacks with Matt who works for Peak Performance, I confided in him that I don't feel as motivated to run as I used to. What he said next resonated with me. He said, "Maybe you're just not afraid of it anymore. When you're afraid, you train harder..." I've thought of his line ever since. I'm excited for this year and with two very difficult 100s.. one being my toughest ever; I'm afraid.. and work must begin.
So where am I currently going for my motivation? I just told you all about it. The streak went well and more people joined then ever before. The fat ass events are getting quite a bit of attention and the guests lists are exciting me. I'm going to the Grand Freakin Canyon to train for a day. I'm going to get to see two new mountain ranges and I'm terrified. Two videos are getting me by these days. The first is a Red Bull Commercial that mesmerizes me every time it comes on. The second.. is my friend David Goggins who has gone MIA from our running world. A video of him from the McNaughton Park 150.. the year he finished 150 miles while I was wrapping up 100. When he heard I needed a pacer, he did jumping jacks in my face.