07 July 2015

ain't no mountain high enough ...

it's almost time to get crazy.

with less than two weeks to go until The North Face Endurance Challenge Series GORE-TEX® 50 Mile trail race i'm into full-on fat-loading and taper mode.  so far for 2015 i've logged over 2800km in workouts, a good proportion of that i would consider as build-up for this ultramarathon.  i've gotten in my interval work, long runs, hill sprints (up and down), and time trials.  aside from a few short-lived knee issues i've managed to stay injury-free and post several encouraging race times that lead me to believe that i'm in good shape to be able to complete this event upright.

which means that it's now also time to start thinking about goal-setting.

i've said from the outset that since this is an entirely new distance test for me that my #1 objective in this race is simply to survive it.  however, to be fair that goal was originally considered against the context of my experience running 56km in the 2014 limberlost challenge where i felt like i was trudging through the valley of the shadow of death.  now, having finished my 50k at sulphur springs in a much more encouraging time i feel like i want to be a bit more ambitious (without being presumptuous).

so once again with the intention of having the small circle of people who read this blog hold me accountable, here are my three goal levels:
  • 'A' goal - finish within top 10 for my age-group
  • 'B' goal - finish in between 8:30-9:00 hours
  • 'C' goal - finish and stay out of the medical staff tent.
there you have it!  for now i'm going to be eagerly watching the weather forecast to see just what kind of ambient conditions we'll be facing that day and trying to nail down just which pieces of gear i'll be using.  i know for certain that i'll be wearing the skechers GORun Ultra 2 and using my nathan quickdraw elite handheld and princeton tec remix headlamp, but it's still up in the air whether or not i'll be wearing the original SPIbelt or a bottle-less ultimate direction AK 2.0 race vest to carry nutrition.

and there are still spots available if you're interested - register online and don't forget to use the promo code D30PVON15 for a 15% discount on any race distance!


  1. Reading your post makes me feel totally unprepared!! Your goals are very ambitious but I believe with the training you've done, if anyone can do it, you can! See you out there (probably only at the start though). My goal is to make the cut-offs that they have at each aid station (vs. overall cut off time like at Sulphur).

    1. thanks for reading this post robin, and for your comment! i'm sure that you're more than prepared for this - and as for me, it'll be an adventure i'm sure. but given that my running sensei jim has reminded me over and over that running is 90% mental and the other 10% is in your head (!) i'm thinking positively and confidently about how it will all go.

      looking forward to seeing you at the mountain!

  2. Best of luck my friend. Glad to hear that everything is in working order!

    1. thanks for everything stan - i did it! and everything still seems to be in working order (although descending stairs is bringing a grimace to my face) ...