Features

It's Training Time

Training is the real litmus test for ultrarunners, because you simply can’t do this sport without putting in tons of miles over several months. Progress is measured in slow increments, and you won’t really know if all th...

Hill Training in the Midwest

Dear Ann, I live in the Midwest. I recently signed up for a hilly ultra. How do I train for hills when I live where it’s flat?   —Carter Dear Carter, Don’t lose heart. There are always ways to prepare for the ups an...

The Emergence of the Ultra Coach

Ten years ago, if you’d asked a middle-of-the-pack ultrarunner if they had a coach, you’d have likely been met with a blank stare or maybe a laugh. A coach? Aren’t coaches for high school cross country athletes or intern...

Fat Burning: A How-to Guide

We have become a society of carb burners. That is where sports nutrition has been for the past couple of decades. Of the two main food sources the body uses for energy, carbohydrates and fats, our working muscles would p...

A Purpose for Every Run

One of the simplest improvements a runner can make to his or her training is to approach every run with a simple question: “What am I trying to achieve today?” It sounds obvious, but it’s all too easy to get caught up ai...

Training for the Long Run

I’ve been fortunate to have remained healthy, motivated and passionate about long-distance running over the years. I believe some of this longevity is due to training principles and guidelines derived from years of succe...

Compete

Compete: strive to gain or win something by defeating or establishing superiority over others who are trying to do the same. There is possibly no other human characteristic treated with more ambivalence than competiti...

Modeling Values in the Ultra Community

Ask any race director what the number one issue with today’s runner is, and most will respond: “They don’t know the rules.” People sign up for races, do the training, yet fail to “get educated.” They don’t read the ra...

The Race Is the Reward

Ultrarunning is rife with setting and pursuing big goals. It might be the conquest of that first ultra finish, the first mind-boggling try at 100 miles or maybe a time goal such as a sub-five hour 50k or a sub-eight hour...

The Most Competitive Ultra Races of 2014

Each year a few races attract a large number of elite runners. In this analysis, we have examined the races in which those who received votes for Runner of the Year competed. Giving the runners of the year 40 points, the...

Wool Running Apparel Review

Although the word is occasionally overused, it’s no exaggeration to say that there’s a renaissance of sorts developing within the athletic apparel industry. In particular, wool performance clothing is more prominent n...

News From Around the Globe

ULTRA TRAIL WORLD TOUR (UTWT) Many of you will have heard about the UTWT that was established in late 2013 with a series of races in 2014, but what is it all about? The concept is to bring some of the worlds most iconic...

Techpocalypse Now

I just returned from the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where I glimpsed into the future. And there ain’t nothin’ left to hide. The number of training sensors, monitors, probes and trackers is revealing (or e...

The Rise of the Running Camp

The past few years have seen tremendous growth in the sport of ultrarunning. With that growth, ultrarunners have benefited in many ways. One such benefit is the advent of ultrarunning camps. 2015 will see several new cam...

Ultra Burnout

Burnout: When running becomes nothing more than work and the fun has “left the building.” You are seemingly only running out of a sense of obligation. You may experience a general lack of motivation. When you reach the p...

Trail Running Film Fest

The idea for The Trail Running Film Festival came from humble beginnings. Back when Rainshadow Running was a small flame waiting to be fanned, race series founder James Varner sat huddled at an old TV at Camp Moran, watc...

The Real Badwater

Every great ultra has its particular characteristics, its claim to fame or infamy, distinguishing topography and such that attract its following. Runners seek events that provide them with physical and mental challenges,...

Feature Races

Heartland 100

Reflecting on her finish at the 15th Annual Heartland 100 in Cassoday, KS, April Calaway wrote: “This is surreal. It surpassed even my fantasy goals. My number-one goal was to finish… and then I wanted to go under 20 hou...

Bandera 100K

Part of what I love about ultrarunning is the exploration, adventure and unexpected challenges. Having spent months preparing for a specific race we typically wish for perfect weather. The dream is for a day that is sunn...

JFK 50

The first step in attempting to run an ultramarathon is to find some conviction. The 52nd John F. Kennedy 50 Mile (JFK) was celebrated on November 22, 2014. The sun rose above Main Street in Boonsboro as 900 runners g...

JFK

Race Reports

Bootlegger

Once the sun rises over Bootleg Canyon, just north of Boulder City, NV, it gets warm fast—even if it’s the 8th of November. In the Nevada desert, the sun rises abruptly and tirelessly, first turning the darkness to dawn...

Cajun Coyote

Drive on down to Evangeline Parish in south central Louisiana, tune into a Zydeco radio station, stop in for some viande boucanée, pull into old Ville Platte, capitol seat of the parish and then set your sights on Chicot...

Deception Pass

Although many runners wind their seasons down by December, that was not the case at this year’s Deception Pass 50K. Instead, this year’s race saw runners get after it, and a pair of stout course records fell in both the...

Hellgate

The 12th running of Hellgate was the last race in the six-race Beast Series. Thirty-eight males and seven females attempted to complete the series. A field of 148 runners (the largest starting field ever) started with th...

Nashville Ultras

Once again this year, the weather made for an interesting Nashville Ultra for the intrepid Nashville area ultrarunners, who numbered over 100 for our 50k up to 50 mile races. At the 7 a.m. start, the temperature was 34 d...

Oregon Coast

The inaugural Oregon Coast 50K was a testament to perseverance and a tribute to versatility. As a Rainshadow race, the mere 4,000 feet of gain may have led some runners to expect a relatively easy course. Of course that...

Snowdrop

The Snowdrop Ultra is held on a 0.76-mile loop of crushed gravel. Runners have 55 hours to complete 100 miles for a belt buckle. Runners competing for the overall mileage champion have 55 hours to run as many miles as th...

Tortoise and the Hare

Wow, what an epic idea! My husband and I were running one day, and because he would run ahead and stop and wait on me, I started comparing us to the tortoise and the hare. Then an idea came. He explained a new concept th...

The North Face Endurance Challenge-California

The North Face Endurance Challenge California GORE-TEX® 50 Mile race took place on December 6th at the Golden Gate National Recreation Area in the Marin Headlands. Over the past few years, this event has become the provi...

Tranquility Lake 50K

We could not have asked for better conditions for the Tranquility Lake 50K, the final race in the 2014 Southeastern Trail Series. Temperatures were in the mid-40s at the start with beautiful clear skies all day. Over 150...

Tunnel Hill 100

Normal temperatures for mid-November in the sleepy little town of Vienna, IL, are around 60 degrees for a high and 40 degrees for a low. Sounds like great running weather for a 100-mile run, doesn’t it? Enter the “Polar...

Volcanic Ultra Trail 80k

Volcano Orsono sits brooding on the northern fringes of Chilean Patagonia. Glaciers hang preposterously from its upper, impenetrable flanks, occasionally calving off and trundling down the lower skirt into the surroundin...

March 2015

A fiery sunset erupts in front of Heartland veteran Elden Galano. Photo: Rick Kent/Mile 90 Photography