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Once a padawan, now a freaking Jedi. I run really far, I write a bunch, and have super powers that allow me to grow amazing facial hair.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Ultrarunning: Endurance of the Mind and Body

An ultramarathon is any distance greater than the 26.2 miles of a standard marathon. Their are popular distances though: 50 kilometers, which is roughly 32 miles. 50 milers, 100 kilometers, and 100 milers. There are also quite a few time based endurance events like 12 and 24 hour runs that measure how far you can run in the allotted time.

Whatever poison you pick, the purpose is still the same... how far can you go?

When the fact that I run ultramarathons comes up in a conversation, the reaction isn't varied much:

  • "You're crazy."
  • "I don't even like to drive that far!"
  • "I can't even run a mile."
  • "Wow, you're like Forrest Gump or something." 
Despite what you might perceive, running 50 miles isn't that crazy... all you need is to want to see if you can. I don't like driving that far either... especially if it's from San Antonio to Austin during rush hour. Everyone can run a mile, you just don't want to. Forrest Gump? I'm not sure how I'm supposed to take that, but if I had a box of chocolates for every... well you get the point.


Okay, okay, maybe I see some similarities.

Running endurance events is all about pushing your body and pushing your mind to its limits and then seeing if you can squeeze out some more. It takes resolve, some degree of passion, and a willingness to step out of your comfort zone.

My love of the outdoors led me to ultrarunning in high school. I wanted to experience the things I loved in a new way, but I also wanted to know myself better. How far could I push myself? What could I learn?

To read the whole story, go here.

Today, ultrarunning is just part of who I am. It always will be, even if I can't run. I love the people, the events, the places, I love it all.

I even love the intense cramping, dehydration, bloody nipples,
and inability to walk up steps for several days following.

To learn more about the sport of ultrarunning, keep following this blog, but in the meantime check out these:

UltraRunning.com

TrailRunnerMag.com

Sandi Nypaver's Blog


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