UltraRunning Magazine would like to congratulate Harvey Lewis for being selected to receive UR’s sponsored entry ticket for the 2024 Western States Endurance Run.
I was searching for a mountain. Back in 1996 I was a full time factory worker, young parent and took evening courses at the University of Minnesota.
I needed an outlet that got me out moving, into nature and going for something that seemed to counter logic. I signed up for the FANS 24 Hour Race. My goal was to keep moving the full time, whether running or walking but without naps or major stops longer than 5 minutes. The final 30 minutes the loop course became and out and back of about 200 meters. The race had its highs and lows but when I made it to the final 20 minutes I was running faster than I dreamed possible. I felt elated and driven. The other runners and crew cheered me on as I picked up the pace to my quickest yet pushing 6 minute miles. I finished being wowed by what is possible but also connecting to many athletes that I still connect with today from Danny Ripka to Ed Rousseau.
The years and decades have passed. It’s hard to believe I’ve been running ultras for the better part of 3 decades. Next summer, if I were to make Western States it would be my 28th year of ultras. I have yet to make it to Western and it’s one of our classic American ultras. I’d love to go for a top 10 finish at this stage of my Ultrarunning experience while I may still have time.
It’s been sometime, The same things that attracted me to Ultrarunning years ago, going after something big similar to a mountain, getting outdoors, health and connecting with others, pushing myself, are the same motivators that push me to go after Western States. It would be amazing!