A big challenge: running a 50 mile race

You may have heard of my 30 day challenges, where I try something new for 30 days. Those challenges are great to try out a new habit and see how you like it.

But I’m also a big believer in picking out really big goals too. In 2010 I trained for a few months so I could climb Kilimanjaro, for example. For 2011, I went skydiving and ran my first marathon in San Francisco. 2012 ended up being a blur: lots of work, plus trips and time with family. I still managed to run a couple more marathons and finish a Tough Mudder race back in Kentucky.

Which brings me to my big goal for 2013. On April 6th, 2013, I’m going to try to run 50 miles for the American River 50. It’s an ultramarathon from Sacramento to Auburn with flat ground for the first half and single-track dirt trails on the second half. The cutoff limit for finishing is 13 hours. As a running friend put it, “You really just need to make the 32 mile cutoff in 7.5 hours or so; after that you could walk the rest of the way!”

In theory, if you run the American River 50 in 11 hours then you can qualify for the Western States 100-Mile Endurance Run. But I’ve gotten a chance to run the trail half of the course a couple times now, and I don’t think there’s any way I can finish that fast. So I’m just shooting to finish in 13 hours. By the way, if you’re interested in ultramarathons (any race longer than a marathon) or trail running, there’s a great documentary about the 2010 Western States race called Unbreakable.

So that’s what I’ll be doing this weekend. Wish me luck, and if anyone want to suggest running music, please leave a comment pointing to a good YouTube video for running. Thanks!

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