Originally posted November 2014 after Javelina Jundred in Arizona. Southwest gives you a free drink on Halloween, but won't bring you two, even if you offer to pay for one.
Someone apparently releases cows into the AZ desert at night. Freaky.
Hallucinations suck, and they make me never want to try LSD.
Scott Jurek is a beautiful and inspirational writer and if you're looking for a new running book, grab his.
I can officially go 75 miles with no iPod, providing I have solid, albeit vulgar, company to entertain me. While we most likely mildly to grossly offended everyone else on the course, we were at least funny.
I went into this race with no specific preparation or plan and the complete willingness to call it quits, and somehow finished. None of this is to say I'm an amazing athlete or anything. I truly don't know how I did it. I also ran with Gordy Ansleigh, the man that decided so many years ago to run a 100 mile horse race with no horse. He refused to accept convention or external limits on what the human body could accomplish. Others saw this and thought "if he can do it, so can I." I saw them and thought "if they can do it, so can I." And more importantly so can anyone. While I don't expect everyone to want to do it, I truly believe anyone can. Moreover, it makes me think about what else is out there that we don't even know we can do...
A sunrise at mile 2 may be beautiful in a conventional sense, but a sunrise at mile 87, regardless of it's lack of brilliant oranges and fiery reds, is damn near holy.
I'm pretty good about not freaking out on spiders, bugs, mice etc...but I do not do tarantulas nor rattlesnakes.
Endurance events are mostly about withstanding an increasing level of suffering, but more than that they're about control. They teach you that you have so much more control than you think. When the miles just tear you down and the dark takes you to a place you didn't know was there, you can control how you look at it, how you treat others in that same place, and you can control your pain. Endurance events allow you to tell the relenting miles that sure you're willing to suffer, but it's going to because you're flying down a mountain at mile 90 vice limping through it. If it's going to hurt, it's at least going to be fun, and it's going to be your way.
Pacers are amazing, wonderful people.
Whoever designed the brooks "Run happy" campaign never ran 100 miles. You can garner only so much strength from happiness. Other alternatives are pride, anger, hurt, and a friend constantly challenging you to toughen up and keep moving.
"Not technical" trails become very technical at night.
Running 100 miles really hurts, like a deep in your core desperate searing but also a dull ache hurt. I'm sure I already knew this, but I had clearly forgotten this nugget. I'm not sure how.
There is not enough lube in the world to fully prevent chafing over 100 miles. Trust me, if you apply on one area, it'll happen in a different, more unspeakable area.
I don't like to run behind someone. I like to feel in the lead. I've always like doing things on my own terms.
Desert night is dark. Miles 50-75 are darker. Sure you can get through it alone but it's nice to have hand on your back, guiding you out of the ditches, pulling you back when you fall asleep walking, and assuring you that your headlamp light is not a giant ball of white rice. Life, and all it's troubles and joys, is better shared.
A lot of people ask what we're running from, or running through, and some of us are doing just that. By and large people running 100 miles aren't perfectly adjusted normal people, and for a long time I loosely fell into this group. Bad breakup? Go for a run. Fight with the parents? Longer run. Failed at something? Work it out on the trail. And while all these things all still happen, more and more I get this sense that I'm heading towards somewhere or something and running is going to help me get there...literally or figuratively. Just not sure what or where or who that is, and at this point I'm really hoping 10ks provide me the same clues as 100 milers.