Friday, July 04, 2008

As A Matter Of Fact I Have Been Asked

"…what are your race plans for next year?” Scary huh…is it even more scary that I had an answer?

Well, I didn’t have as precise an answer as I like to give but I had a pretty good outline. There are at least two races that I know for sure I will be doing, Buffalo Springs Lake Triathlon, their 20th anniversary, and Ironman Arizona. Yeah, I wasn’t going to do any official IMs next year but after CdA the missus definitively stated that she would be racing IMAZ 09 so what the hey…there is no joy quite like the household in full Ironman training.

Apart from those races I am really looking more at next year as an ultrarunning year. You see I have it in my head that I might want to run Badwater and in order to get into Badwater you have to build a credible ultra-distance racing resume. You don’t have to be fast but you have to have proven you have a reasonable chance of finishing. The minimum qualification standard that I will go for is the completion of a continuous 100 mile foot race. Of course that is the bare minimum. They say the “ideal” applicant has extensive experience, 5 years, in ultra endurance sports as defined by ultra-triathlon (double-ironman or longer), ultra-cycling (500 mile races or longer) and ultra-running (100 miles or longer).

Double irons are rare and seem to take place mostly outside the U.S. and seem like they would be mind bogglingly boring. They seem to pretty much always take place in a pool on a mile or so ling closed circuit road and on a track and it is one iron distance per day for consecutive days. I think I would rather attach leaches to my eyes and pop them out.

The ultra-cycling, well, I’ve given that somewhat of a try and, um, after more than 13 hours on the back of a bike, well let’s just say I was panic stricken for what felt like years…let us never speak of this again.

So, what is left to me is running, which is a good thing, I think. So like I was saying I MIGHT want to run Badwater and I am not one to let my dreams slip away for lack of trying but I have never run 100 miles and am not so audacious as to start making too many 100 mile race plans without some realistic understanding of what I am getting myself into so I await my Lean Horse debut and then I’ll be in a better position to plan my 2009 season.

In the mean time, oh yes, you didn’t really think I was going to leave it at two measly races with the remainder of the year spread before me like a sea of darkness, did you?

In the mean time I am planning a serious base building activity in the form of the 50-Miles Texas Style Grand Slam. This slam consists of:

1. Palo Duro 50-mile – mid-October (2008)

2. Rocky Raccoon 50-mile – early February (2009)

3. Cross Timbers 50-mile – late February (2009)

4. Grasslands 50-mile – end of March (2009)

5. Rocky Hill Ranch 50-mile – mid-April (2009)

Depending on how Lean Horse goes I will probably use this slam to jump start a season that may include a couple more 100s. Actually, if Lean Horse goes well I may attempt the Rocky Raccoon 100 instead of the 50 since, as I have already discovered, I would get credit for the slam if I were to finish 50 miles of the raccoon even if that meant a DNF for the 100.

I have done Grasslands before and loved it. I also have tremendous faith in Texans and their ability to put on a fun race so I don’t have any worries about any of the others.

Yes, yes, I am staying focused on the rest of my current season but how can you not get excited when the future is so full of possibilities!


  1. It is good to know that you will be staying out of trouble next year.

    You are definitely an endurance animal - I salute you!

  2. If you like running here in Texas, there's also the Texas Independence Relay in April. If you and Misty want to put together a team, let me know.

  3. I think it would be scarier if you didn't have an answer! (But I'm big on looking ahead ...)

  4. My legs are tired from just thinking about all that running :-)

  5. Where you are at mentally and physically, you can pretty much do whatever the heck you want. Just keep us posted.
    Even though I don't live in New Mexico, can I join the OUTLAWS? J-WIM and I think you need some representatives in this neck of the woods.

  6. wow, you are so ahead of the game. all those ultra endurance events...whew! I'm exhausted already :)

  7. Like the look of '09... Yup once you get into 100's I think you may have to do one at least once a year..

    I have this 5 year plan to get into BadWater as well.. Scary thought if you actually get selected. But it would be an adventure..

    I'll see If I can keep up with you in '09..

  8. awesome

    props to you..

    i agree...a double ironman would be insanely boring...but i still salute those that can do it...

  9. t = 0 seconds
    Commences reading blog entry.

    t = 1 minute
    Jaw hits floor.

  10. Anonymous2:12 AM

    OMG that run sounds amazing - is that the one the Ultramarathon Man wrote about in his book? Dean woteva his name is...

    AMAZING... Good luck

  11. Badwater- I have a training partner, multi 50 & 100 race finishes, ironman, ran the sahara marathon (156 mile stage race) and has volunteered at badwater for four years and still has not been picked. he is really hoping next year is the year.

  12. I have read about double and triple Ironman races. I have heard stories of people falling asleep on their bikes. I find it hard to grasp and 140.6 is enough for one day.