Tuesday, November 27, 2012


I've run five 100 mile endurance events (4 races, 1 adventure run), two 100k events, a bunch of 50 milers (2 races, at least), and more 50k length runs than I can count. Yet, with all of that I still feel like a rookie. Every time I go into a long run I feel like I'm lacking the appropriate knowledge and experience. I know that through all of my training and racing what works for me, how and when to eat, to be meticulous about my electrolyte intake, and how to pace early on. My race and adventure run results would indicate that I have a wealth of experience, but I still find myself in a constant state of learning.

Five 100 milers just doesn't seem like enough to be ready and confident going into my next race. When I talk with people, especially runners who haven't done an ultra, they think I'm amazing and an encyclopedia of information. Yet, when in discussions with other experienced ultra runners who have double the years of time invested in the sport I feel like a student, even if I have produced better race results. I definitely don't think that race results are a direct indication of how good a runner a person really is. Success can be found in smaller races, harder courses, or even just luck (like me).

Mile 56 of the Wasatch 100, 2012

The longer I'm involved with this sport the more I'm coming to realize that I'll never stop learning, that every race and each long run provides just a little more experience as I prepare for whatever comes next. I'm guessing that the day I go into a race thinking I have it in the bag will be the day I probably experience my first DNF (Did Not Finish). As long as I respect the distance and the course I believe I can go in with confidence and the knowledge that I can achieve my goals, but I have to stay humble. There is always something new to be learned.

As a side note, I had a great week of Thanksgiving. Perfect weather all week allowed for several amazing runs, two of which I took video of. Enjoy them when you have time. I would suggest changing the settings to watch both in HD.

1 comment:

Jeremy Howlett said...

It is like this in anything that we do. We go into it thinking we know a lot, but the more we learn the more we find out that we don't know. We start to see that there is so much more to learn. Then we start assuming those around us know as much as we do and yet we are an expert to them, but then others know so much more than we do and they are the experts to us. There is so much to learn in running, nutrition, fitness, etc. Just like life, there are few if any that have mastered it to a key science. If we fail to learn then we learn to fail #keeplearning!