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UltraRunning February 2018

  • The Year in Review by John Medinger
  • Female Ultrarunners of the Year
  • Male Ultrarunners of the Year
  • Performances of the Year
  • The Beauty of the Buddy System by Sarah Lavender Smith
  • Camille Herron Interview
  • Jim Walmsley Interview
  • Most Notable FKT’s of 2017 by Buzz Burrell
  • Beast Coast Bucket List by Amy Rusiecki

Commentary
Struggle and Doubt
I stood at the finish line of my first half marathon, confused. I was surrounded by people who had somehow found a singular, defining experience that morning. Was this why people run? What had I done wrong that prevented me from reveling in a sense of accomplishment?
Featured
2016 Allegheny Front Trail Run
Mild temperatures and a gentle breeze in Central Pennsylvania’s Moshannon State Forest ushered in the daylight at Mid-State Regional Airport for the fifth annual Allegheny Front Trail Run.
Commentary
Longevity in the Sport
Let’s face it, ultrarunning is a really difficult activity. It requires a huge time and lifestyle commitment. But many people are attracted, like moths to flame, to the opportunity to do something epic. And often once they do a few ultras they realize there is a steep learning curve and they achieve faster, and faster, times. Soon, they are pulled into the drive to reach their highest potential by racing ultras – they are all-in.
Six Inches Versus 100 Miles
It’s universally understood that there’s nothing easy about running and racing ultra distances. The mastery the headspace is more important to cultivate than the training miles that we put in in pursuit of ultra glory. If we come up short, we sometimes think that had we trained more, or harder, then maybe our outcome might have been better, when what really mattered was our mental and psychological approach to the task.
Joe Prusaitis: Tejas Trails Sold
Long-time RD and Texas ultrarunning insititution Joe Prusaitis recently announced the sale of his well-known and highly regarded ultra races, including the Rocky Raccoon 100 miler and the Bandera 100k to new owners Chris and Krissy McWatters. We asked Joe if he would be willing to share a bit of his story with us.
How to Leverage Your Accomplishments
Four ultramarathoners occupied a $200 /month, rundown apartment. They shared one bathroom and one dream: They loved to run the long ones, the ultras. They pooled every thing they had – food, Nikes, part – time jobs, friends, and trails. Life was simple because there were no non-essential personal possessions to care for or to use.
Ultrarunner Profile: Bill Clements
It was Easter Sunday in March 2008, and he was unable to fit into the restaurant booth at a family gathering. Bill Clements was nearly 30 years old, and this was his wakeup call. He had always enjoyed being in nature and the idea that he was physically fit and able to enjoy himself on various outings and adventures, but now, with 250 pounds on his 5 foot 9 inch frame, he knew that something had to change. Two years later Bill completed his first 50k
The Night Before
What am I doing here? And why did I decide that this was the race to “go for it?” Now I just wish I were at home between my own sheets with hyperactive bladder and bowels and cold sweaty feet and hands. Most of all, I wish that tomorrow held something other than an early rise and a day of exceedingly painful effort. Ah, well. close the eyes, breath deeply, and please, please, go to sleep.
Ultra Aggression
Sure, runners can get snarky in the heat of the moment—at race officials or at their own crew and pacers when things don’t go their way. But this has more to do with the stress of the event, and having their needs (however illogical or self-entitled they may be) properly met.
A Manifesto for Minimalist Races
Last year, my friend Todd Jennings and I organized a race to celebrate the Shawangunk Ridge Trail (SRT), a magical footpath that traverses the entire 74-mile length of the Shawangunk Mountains in New York’s Hudson Valley.
Richard Dinges — An Amazing Recovery Continues
Paralyzed from the neck down, his head supported by a stainless steel band with pins penetrating his skull, Richard Dinges sat immobilized in a wheelchair last year still planning to run in the 1984 Catalina Marathon and Western States 100. “The doctors were pretty noncommittal,” Dinges said. “They just didn’t know what the outcome would be.”
Cowboy Songs
By Katrin Silva I enjoy running with music. I don’t do it all the time, and never while racing. But…
How Much Walking?
Some runners may be sensitive enough to their body’s rhythms and needs that they will instinctively know when it’s time for a walk. They are fortunate, and I don’t want to change their successful methods. Many of us, though, are fairly new to the game. and we don’t have an established sense of pace. However, it is not hard to plan and execute a race when a few simple calculations are made.
A Purpose for Every Run
One of the simplest improvements a runner can make to his or her training is to approach every run with a simple question: “What am I trying to achieve today?” It sounds obvious, but it’s all too easy to get caught up aiming for weekly mileage targets for no better reason than because they sound impressive.
The Boring Ultrarunner
Your great victories seldom make entertaining stories. What people want to hear about are your appalling errors and grievous miscalculations.
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