Browsing: Features

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Keeping It Ironic: Burning River 100 Mile

Burning River has always been a race with a heart of irony. The race celebrates health, strength, vitality, natural beauty and of course, the Cuyahoga River. Yet 50 years ago, the actual events that led to the Cuyahoga earning the name “burning river” were tragic and ugly.

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Blue Collar Runners: Laura Farrell

Laura Farrell has broken barriers in the sport of ultrarunning. Her real legacy, however, began with a vision she had in the mid-1980’s. Nearly 40 years later, she has dramatically impacted thousands of lives.

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From the Coach: Consistency is King

I often get asked if there’s a secret to maintaining consistency. This question usually has the undertone of having your cake and eating it too, i.e. doing excessive training and getting away with it. Yet, it’s a fairly simple formula that I instill in those I coach, as well as in my own racing.

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Cruel Conditions at Catoctin 50K

Carnage. That is the only word to describe the effects of the heatwave which enveloped the east coast. Dreams were destroyed. Months of training, unless they included sauna work, were essentially for naught. Hell, organizers cancelled the New York City Triathlon due to extreme heat advisories that same weekend.

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Forbidden Forest 30-Hour Ultra Run: All Winners in Connecticut

The format at Forbidden Forest is not the usual 100-mile race with a 30-hour cutoff. It’s a no-one-DNFs 30-hour run with the win going to whomever runs the farthest, and special buckles for everyone that manages 45 laps of the 2.23 mile loop, or 100.35 miles. Consequently, the race was a mix of runners with widely varying goals and dreams.

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Dawn to Dusk to Dawn Track Ultras: Big Miles at D3

Several of the fifty 24-Hour runners hoped to put up a performance worthy of garnering a spot on a National 24-Hour team. Competition for a spot on the US Men’s 24-Hour team was intense, as a handful of runners vied for the honor of representing their country in Albi, France this coming October.

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PCT 50: The Horsemen of the Apocalypse

After picking up our fabulous medals at the raucous finish line, we were treated to a great spread of beer, pizza, rice, beans, pork and assorted goodies. The course was difficult but accessible and the volunteers were plentiful and enthusiastic, which adds up to one hell of a great event.

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Essential Recovery Nutrition

After finishing your long run, hard effort workout or morning run that lasts over 90 minutes, what’s the first thing you think about? Let’s all admit that unless you’ve developed a good routine, getting in a balanced meal or recovery drink is sometimes not the first priority.

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Gore R7 Gore-Tex ShakeDry Trail Hooded Jacket Review

A lightweight, fully waterproof and windproof shell that stuffs into its chest pocket for easy storage. Fit is slim through the torso, and well-proportioned at the waist and arms. The incorporated hood is especially useful for versatile protection without getting in the way.

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The Inaugural Big Chief 50K

The views from nearly every trail in the Lake Tahoe region are nothing short of breathtaking. This marked the inaugural year of the Big Chief 50K where for the first time, runners would be able to link a number of trails on one single 50k loop while experiencing every type of terrain with unparalleled views of Lake Tahoe along the way.

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First Look: Merrell Trail Glove 5

If you’ve enjoyed Trail Glove shoes in the past, you’ll love the Trail Glove 5. It provides the same sock-like fit and excellent ground feel, but has some key construction updates that improve its comfort and performance.

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Double Chubb 50K: Quadruple Bypass

We had a very snowy, wet winter in St. Louis. Couple that with epic amounts of snow up north, and you end up with the perfect storm. So, for the first time in six years (and the first time since I’ve been RD), we had to invoke the beloved “Quadruple Bypass” route.

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Manitou’s Revenge

Manitou’s Revenge is run through some sections of the Catskills designated as wilderness areas. By the time runners reach their drop bags, they’ve already run a 50k. What follows is an unholy mess – the Devil’s Path – featuring steep and technical climbs and descents over four of its peaks, some of them more than a bit sketchy.

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Umstead 100: Racing to Remission

“Sorry for the long wait, but I can now offer you an entry spot into our race.” These magical words confirmed I had secured a “competitive entrant” slot, just eight weeks prior to the 25th edition of the Umstead 100.

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Running Scared at Rock The Ridge

I ran the first edition of Rock The Ridge (RTR) in 2013, and the race has grown into the largest annual fundraiser for the Mohonk Preserve, a private, non-profit land trust that maintains over 7,000 acres of open space in the Shawangunk Mountains in New York.

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COROS APEX GPS Watch Review

The second member of the COROS global watch family (along with the Pace), the Apex is best known for its hefty battery life. Compared to the Pace, the Apex has been given a facelift sporting a sleek new design in addition to new features such as navigation, fitness tracking, and sleep tracking.

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Ice Age Trail 50: Family Reunion at the Finish Line

The scene in the finish area of the Ice Age Trail 50 is a living expression of what most of us love about the ultrarunning community. Runners and spectators alike welcome the finishers – and those who didn’t make it – as they would a friend or family member. If you’re wearing a bib, someone is looking after you.

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First Look: Topo Athletic MT-3

In the past, the MT has been equally comfortable on the road or trail, but updates to the new version shift it more squarely into the trail category. Two key trail-specific updates are additional cushioning in the midsole, and a redesigned upper with increased durability and drainage capacity.

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Bryce Canyon 100: Turning Around My Low

I registered for the Bryce Canyon 100 as a training run. My only concrete plan was to run hard. But at the start of the second loop I instantly felt sick on the first climb. I had two equally discouraging choices: quit or hike 40 miles.

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Blue Collar Runners: Jacky Hunt-Broersma

In 2001, Jacky discovered a lump on her leg. One week after her diagnosis, she was in surgery having her leg amputated. “Looking back now, it sounds really weird but I’m kind of glad it happened. It puts life in perspective, you appreciate things more. I just think I’m a better person because of what happened.”

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Riverlands 100 in the Maine Forest

Only in its third year, race directors Valerie Abradi and Mindy Slovinsky have put together an ultra event with an old-school feeling and lots of down home charm that will simultaneously delight and challenge you. Riverlands is a great up-and-coming destination race. Put it on your calendar before the word gets out.

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Heat and a Course Record at KEYS100

For years, the consensus had been that Mike Morton’s 100-mile record, set in 2012, was invincible. But this year, Brett Sanborn beat it by 12 minutes in an astounding 13:20:18. Given that it was a very hot weekend with minimal cloud cover, Brett’s performance was all the more remarkable.

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Six Moon Designs Flight 30 Pack

A frameless, large capacity pack designed for fast packing or light overnight excursions, the Flight 30 has a great deal of adjustability and customization of fit, and excellent cargo available within arm’s reach during activity.

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Hellbender 100: A Different Perspective

The second annual Hellbender 100-Miler turned out to be a huge learning experience for me. Two weeks prior to race day I made a comment on Facebook about how the attention of a race should not always be on the front runners, but on those at the back of the pack. This race would hit home for me what my comment really meant.

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