Saturday, September 29, 2007
In 1978 I was fortunate enough to be present when Don Ritchie came to New York and ran the NYRRC 100 miler in Flushing meadow, around the lake. This was my first exposer to Ultra running and I was really impressed. I had run a few marathons and later that year would be inspired to run my first Ultra a 47 mile race. I later helped to organize the first Sri Chinmoy center 24 hour race, as I entered into my late 20's I decided it was time for me to run one. For the next few years I ran anything from the marathon up to 24 hours, getting my marathon time down to 3:09 and running 100k in 11:43, but somehow never managing to complete more than 93 miles (150k) in a 24 hour race. In 1984 I helped out at the first New York 6 day and a whole new world opened up for me. I had become friends with Don Choi a couple of years before and was fascinated by this type of event reading all about George Littlewood in the 1880's. I now got to see Yiannis Kouros break world records that had existed for almost 100 years. I continued to run 24 hour races for some years, but in 1986 ventured into the multi day scene. I ran in a 5 day race in November of that year completing 252 miles, though I experienced physical problem s like I had never known before I wanted to do more of them. For the last 21 years I have run on average 1 multi day race every year, I found that my focus was so much turned to this kind of race and I stopped running in 24 hour races and other shorter ones. Last year I developed a foot problem that had bothered me for 10 months and I finally managed to fix it a few weeks before a 6 day race here in New York. I decided it was too soon to run in this event but went out to help some runners I know. My running was improving and I decided to run a local 50k race some weeks after the 6 day, something had inspired me to try and run some shorter races again. The race went quite well and now that I am in my early 50's I was quite happy with my 6: 36 time, one thing I did feel though was that I was a little heavy. So over the next month I went on a raw food diet and lost 17 lbs. Next stop was to run in the open division at the 24 hour world championships in Quebec Canada. I managed 73 miles and was now excited about running shorter races to hopefully help my multi day performances. I have since run 80 miles in Ottawa Canada and plan to run a 50k race in Chicago in 4 weeks time. I have somehow re discovered the spark in my ultra running.