Monday, December 2, 2013

The next step, but I don't know why

As some astute stalkers blog readers have already guessed, I signed up for a 2014 race last weekend. It's kind of a big deal.

The C&O Canal 100 miler

This April, I'll be attempting to run 100 miles. Don't worry about me though, this is one of those "easy" 100 milers. It's all on a flat towpath, so you won't find yourself lost while trying to climb a mountain at 3am.

To put it in perspective, there is no race "date". The race spans over two days (Saturday at 7am to Sunday at noon). There's a 30 hour cutoff. Meaning the race continues overnight. I'm counting on my GORUCK experience to get me through that part.

I would have announced it yesterday, along with Kara, but I really wanted my success making pie crust to get top billing.

So now the big question is: why? My friend asked me the day before Stone Mill to explain exactly what goes through my head when I decide running 50 miles is a good idea. 

I didn't have an answer. Then I had 11.5 hours to think about it the next day during the race. I still couldn't come up with anything. At least not that I could put into words. Or even google something someone much more articulate has already put into words.

 I like pain? Except not really.

Something about the challenge maybe? That could be it.

At my first 50 miler, the lows were awful. The thought of running one more step, much less 30 more miles, was incomprehensible and had me nearly laying down crying on the trails.

I wouldn't exactly say every moment of my 3rd one was pure bliss, but relatively, I felt much better throughout the race. I was never near tears, never yelled at strangers, and never thought I'd rather be in the Hunger Games than doing this stupid race. At the end, again, it's all relative, but I didn't feel as close to death as in previous years.

Clearly, it was time to up the ante.

Another possible reason is that I'm really a lazy runner. I know that doesn't seem in line with my current goal race, but stick with me.

Pretty much at this point my options for challenge are either increase the distance, or choose a race and focus on improving my speed. I would much rather run an easy ten miles than a 5 mile tempo run. Focusing on speed is really, really hard, it requires discipline, focus, math (those 800 intervals don't time themselves), exertion - you catch my drift.

Training for a 100 is much simpler. Run. A lot. Then run more. See how much more appealing that is?

We are currently looking for pacers. So anyone that's ever thought "I'd really like to travel to Maryland and run with Alyssa and Kara in the middle of the night while they are dirty, miserable, and probably rude and annoying", please let us know and cancel your plans the weekend of April 26-27. I'll bake you a dessert. I promise.


  1. Probably rude and annoying? I think we can guarantee that. It would be like babysitting drunk people, but smellier.

    I'm so glad you're out about this so I can tell everyone about how you made the training plan so if the race goes to shit, it's your fault. :)

  2. Why? Because. That's why.

    This is really cool! 100 milers are mystical to me. You go for, like, a full day? Almost? Geeze.

    1. If you can finish under 24 hours, that's seriously brag worthy and slightly mind boggling.

  3. Wait, did you just call me a stalker?

    Also, I would totally pace you guys...except for that whole other side of the country thing.

  4. My big goal is a 50 miler in 2014.... 100 seems totally insane. I mean, doable with solid training. ;)

  5. Could I pace you on a bicycle or have Bungee pull me in a wagon?

  6. Insane. And awesome. I haven't picked a spring race yet, but pacing sounds like fun! I'm thinking Shamrock, which is two weeks before this....good timing :)

  7. I didn't even know 100 milers existed. Yikes! I'm dumbfounded. Are you sure you weren't delivered by the mailman? Are you sure you're really part of this family?

  8. 100 milers are like the holy grail of ultrarunning, right? Monty Python that shit! I've never read the blog of someone training for a 100 miler, so you better share about how much you're running while you train for the race so I can sit here with my mind blown. I cannot imagine running all day, all night, and into the next day! Congrats on signing up for the race. Now go train :)

  9. Oh wait, Shamrock is in March and this is April (I'm dumb). And I'm totally there for pacing :)

  10. Haha, I would love to come down there and pace you two! Considering I both find you very funny on a regular basis, I can only imagine you will be downright hysterical in the middle/toward the end of this! If I happen to get fired from my job (probably not likely but just in case), I will be there!

  11. I'm just impressed that you are signed up for this. That alone would make me cry and weep. Sadly I have a wedding that weekend so I won't be able to fly out and run with you. I'm very disappointed. Because there is nothing creepy about running with internet strangers in the dead of night.

  12. It's probably equally unusual that this sounds like a great way to spend my birthday weekend (April 27!). Seriously, it does. Unfortunately, Singapore, and all that. But I'll yell really loudly. And if my schedule changes, I'll let you know.

  13. Can't believe i missed this post. now that I upgraded my phone's operating system I can read and comment on blogs for my phone again. If you should ever attempt a west coast 100, I will pace you.

    As i tracked friends who were running The North Face 50 miler last weekend, I tried to explain to my husband how 50 miles allows you to run at a much more comfortable pace then any shorter distance and he looked at me like I was crazy.


Thanks for commenting! Comments make me probably more happy than they should.