This video nicely sums out why I love Leadville so much...and why I'll be toeing the line for every LT100 my body lets me run.
Hoka One Ones might be the worst thing that ever happened to me. They're so soft and comfy that they've rendered my other shoes quite uncomfy. So why is that bad? you ask. Well, Hokas go for about $170 a pair. Yikes!
Stay tuned for an interview with Phil McCarthy, who recently won his second 24-hour national championship and is also the owner of the American record for 48 hours.
On Saturday night I paced George Zack for 15 miles at the Boulder 100. This was George's first 100-miler and he did a really nice job, finishing second overall. I had a great time out there and was honored to join many others in helping GZ achieve his goal. The Boulder 100 is a no-fills course that's an out and back along the Boulder Reservoir. The route is a mixture of pavement, dirt and gravel and is pretty flat. I see it as a course built for a fast time. Anyway, the takeaway is this: If you want to do a 100 and have never done one, pace someone before taking the plunge. I had never paced anyone before my first 100 and I wish I had.
Last week I tallied 70.52 miles, including 31 miles on Saturday alone. I'd like to stay right at 70 miles a week for the rest of the year. I'm going to end 2011 with about 3,600 miles--kind of a down year mileage-wise but, then again, my foot injury from last summer and fall had me starting out slow this year.
A few nights ago I dreamed I was in the Western States 100. I've contemplated entering Western for a few years. I knew the itch would eventually need to be scratched and hopefully next June I'll be lining up at Squaw Valley Ski Resort for 100 miles of fun, followed by the Leadville 100 seven weeks later. Unfortunately, the lottery system makes entry in Western pretty difficult, so I'm trying not to get ahead of myself. But right now it's hard not to be giddy by the thought of running in that historic race.
I'm watching the Leadville Race Series website like a hawk, just waiting for LT100 registration to open!
Now for the good stuff.... A lot of people in the blogosphere are talking about Ultrarunner of the Year and who should bring home the honors. This is a North American award, meaning it goes to the top male and female ultrarunners from the US and Canada. Which is to say a guy like Kilian Jornet is ineligible. Whatever. Until the award is expanded to an international athlete base, it is what it is. Looking at the North American ultrarunning landscape, it seems to me Dave Mackey and Ellie Greenwood get major consideration.
In ultrarunning, the one-size-fits-all approach doesn't apply. Would Kilian beat Dave Mackey or Michael Wardian in a 100-mile mountain race with altitude? Probably. Would Dave beat Kilian in a 50-mile or 100K race? Probably. Who would win in a 50K or 100K road race--Kilian, Dave Mackey or Michael Wardian? Easy--Wardian. Would Kilian stand a chance against Max King in a 50K trail race? I'm guessing not. If Kilian were in a 24-hour race against Phil McCarthy, who would win? Probably McCarthy. What I'm getting at is that I don't really think one event is superior to another, regardless of mileage involved. I think a 2:50 50K is just as impressive as a 14-hour 100-miler. In ultras, you have specialties. Rarely can a guy or gal do them all really well.
Races that I really want to do before I'm too old to run:
- Western States 100 (see above)
- Hardrock 100
- Wasatch 100
- Bear 100
- HURT 100
- Across the Years 24-Hour
- Spartathlon (153-mile race in Greece)