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Vert Beats: An Almost Perfect Race

“An Almost Perfect Race”

If you have been doing trail and ultra races for a while, you know that feeling of being out there running, thinking you’re having the “best race of your life”…until suddenly, something happens and everything goes to wrong. Yep, that how our sport works–even the most elite ultra runner can go from champion mode to survivor mode in a matter of minutes. Knowing how to handle this is one of the key aspects of our sport–as is knowing when to accept it’s time to call it a day and try again next time.

We leave you with this video about Courtney Dauwalter’s “almost perfect day” at the Western States 100 last year, when she set out to run the course record. Everything was going perfectly in her race…until it wasn’t.

You can watch the video here.


What to read:

Last weekend there were a lot of “virtual challenges” happening. Some really amazing results came out of this, like: a few world records broken, like the 21k and 100k on a treadmill and also, the marathon relay (called “MA RA TH ON”) which had a lot of big names from the running and trail running scenes, including Kilian’s (surprising) time of 30:30 for a 10k….which he called “a good tempo training.” Dang.

You can read more here.

What to read:

Even though we’re seeing the race calendar around the world slowly start to move again after the pandemic, we still have a long way to go until we find the number of race options that we did in the past. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t find something else to do, and that’s why “PFKTs”–Personal Fastest Known Times–are becoming more popular than ever before. PFKTs are about things like beating your local favorite Strava segment, or going for a long adventure close to home; that’s why we leave you with this article from Trail Runner Magazine about why “PFKT” are hot, and how to try one safely.

You can read the article here.

What to listen to:

Not only has Joe Gray been one of the most successful and consistent “short distance” mountain runners from the USA in the last decade, but he’s also always been vocal about the things that he stands for. We leave you with Dylan Bowman’s most recent episode from his podcast called “The Well,” in which he interviews Joe about racism in the U.S., and more specifically, in the trail and ultra running world. They also discuss the piece that Joe recently wrote for Trail Runner Magazine (“No Change in Silence.”) As always with Dylan’s podcasts, this episode with Joe is a must-listen–especially for non-Black runners to educate ourselves about the racism and underrepresentation present in our sport.

You can listen to the podcast here.

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