Features

Listen to Karen

In 2017, the last finisher to round the track at Western States was Karen Bonnett-Natraj. The crowd erupted in cheers as she entered the stadium, and everyone was on their feet glancing at their watches as if that would...

What’s Your Ultra Philosophy?

Dear Ann,I’ve been running ultras for almost six years and I love the sport. But it doesn’t seem to matter how I do, I can’t figure out how to keep from getting down on myself. Is there a philosophy you’ve developed that...

We Need to Talk About Sleep

As an athlete who is always exploring the boundaries of my own best self, I have always acknowledged the positive benefits of sleep for optimum athletic performance. But after reading Why We Sleep by Dr. Matthew Walker,...

Training for the Flatlanders

If you are like most ultrarunners, you probably have several dream races on your bucket list. Whether it is an iconic race like Western States, Hardrock or UTMB, or a local gem that you have your eye on, there’s a good c...

Don’t Get Greedy

We’ve all been there. You are in the last two weeks leading up to a race and just thinking about it makes your palms sweat. Suddenly, all the weeks and months of training – countless hours on the trail – are all but forg...

Racing on Uncertain Terms

Most of us have been there – we make grand plans for running in the months ahead and visualize optimistic ideals of both our time and motivation for training. Then, before we know it, our New Year’s resolutions are fadin...

Essential Recovery Nutrition

After finishing your long run, hard effort workout or morning run that lasts over 90 minutes, what’s the first thing you think about? Let’s all admit that unless you’ve developed a good routine, getting in a balanced mea...

100-Mile Race Strategy

Racing 100 miles is hard. There, we got that out of the way and now we can focus on the nuts and bolts of how to navigate a 100-mile race. There are numerous parts that go into a successful 100-miler, and finishing is a...

The Unique Psychology of an Ultrarunner

It doesn’t take a psychologist to know that runners are a bit different in the head (which is a good thing since I’m a physiologist). Ultrarunners on the other hand, well, most people think they more than just a bit diff...

Dealing with the Pain

I’m going to go a little grim here. Everything about your first 100-mile race is going to be over-the-top, out-sized and epic compared to the shorter ultras you’ve done. The sheer distance, the time it takes, the highs a...

Engineering a 100-Mile Success

I’m an engineer with a Type A personality. If there was such a thing as being Type A+ that would be me. I like organization and anyone who has done one of my races has received race announcements that include bullet poin...

Cutoff Chasers Unite

There’s a good chance you’ll be reading this right around Western States (WSER). Like any pro championship, WSER is fun because we can follow the top athletes. We’re all excited to see what happens at the front, but let’...

Nikki Kimball: Always a Runner

We all face crucial decisions throughout our lives. The one facing Nikki Kimball last fall was the most important she would ever make regarding her running.A left tibia injury from a snowshoe race in 2016 had escalated d...

10 Times: A Western States Retrospective

Western States is cult-like in how it completely sucks you in and takes over your life. It is with you every day during the six-month training process and then strips you down to your soul over the 100-mile journey on ra...

Summer Apparel Review

For summer trail running, good things come in light, breathable, moisture-wicking packages. Here are some great choices for staying cool on the trail when the weather gets hot. rabbitRabbit introduced a full line of new...

A Marathon at the Ballpark

On a March afternoon in Minnesota, the greatest event in running history took place on a modern-day Field of Dreams. Iconic races like Western States, the Boston Marathon and Badwater pale in comparison to this new quint...

Getting Through the Low Points

The situation seemed hopeless. At the 80-mile mark of the Wasatch Front 100 there was nothing left, the tank was empty, I’d expended everything on the course and there were no reserves left to draw from. The thought of c...

Who’s Your Daddy?

So, you feel your game plan is set and you think you’re in control? You think you know which way is up? Sign up and toe the starting line of a trail 100-miler, and we’ll see who your daddy is. Full-blown summer is here,...

I am an Ultrarunner: Joyce Ong

Age: 68Where do you live currently? Nokesville, VAWhere did you grow up? Yuba City, CAOccupation: Retired from federal government serviceFamily (kids, spouse, pets)? My best friend Ray is also my eternal kid, spouse and...

Feature Races

The Barkley Marathons

If a runner knows one thing coming into the Barkley, it’s that they know nothing. The starting time, the exact route, the conditions they’ll face – even many of their opponents – all of these are mysteries to be revealed...

The Canyons

“I’ll see rattle snakes, bears and mountain lions,” I told my children. Other than the occasional grumpy hedgehog there’s not much feisty exotica to threaten trail runners in the UK. I wanted them to think of me as some...

Lake Sonoma

How do you replace a 37-year race directing legend? You don’t. You keep him and his wife on board to transition, advise and help since all you can think about is screwing up everything he built. After the shock that Trop...

Race Reports

Brazos Bend

The Brazos Bend 50 (BB50) was the first race put on by Trail Racing Over Texas in 2014. Since then, race director, Rob Goyen, has put on over 60 events across the state, each with its own “flare.” For BB50, that flare is...

Miwok

It’s always an interesting time when you’re on the trails for the bulk of a day. By interesting, I mean the highs, lows, pain, shared conversations and lessons learned. On May 4, the Miwok 100K definitely delivered all o...

Prairie Spirit

My whole life has been spent looking for that next adventure. Finding ways to challenge myself while at the same time trying to live my best life possible and lift others up. I was born with cerebral palsy 36 years ago a...

Ozark Foothills

I was born and raised on a lush 700-acre farm in Missouri. It was a big backyard for an energetic farm boy to explore. Hiking down to the pond to swim, running to meet the neighbor kids at the creek, cutting across the p...

July 2019

Anna Mae Flynn, winner of Lake Sonoma 50, cruises through one of the many water crossings on the course. Photo: Howie Stern