Three tips to get you through 100 miles
In the weeks leading up to her first 100 miler, Melanie Fryer sent out an email to the group asking for three tips on getting through a 100 miler. The responses that followed are golden examples of how to take down a hundred. Check out some of the great replies below, and then keep reading to see what strategies Melanie used during her run at the Pinhoti 100.
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[tab title=”Chris Russell”]
- Mental – Envisioned holding that belt buckle
- Mental – Not wanting to have to explain to everyone why I dropped
- Physical – Paced conservatively and ate calories early and often
[tab title=”Liza Howard”]
- Mental – Listing the reasons it’s important that I run and finish the race. Evaluating those reasons and making sure they’re rock solid. They’re my touchstones when things are awful.
- Mental – Listing the reasons I will drop and walking up to the starting line committed and ready to be out there for 36 hours or whatever the overall cutoff is.
- Physical – Packing for any freak weather eventuality in my drop bags and keeping a trash bag in my handheld or pack just in case it rains or gets cold before I get back to my gear.
[tab title=”Jean Perez”]
- Finish the race – I feel more committed to it when I have told someone I’m going to do it. How can I explain why I quit? Is it really that bad? Will I be okay with that?
- PR – Race against myself and feeling that I put my best effort into it.
- No pity parties for myself – very personal, but–my sister in law has a brain tumor, and the amount of effort it takes her to stand up, walk, go through physical therapy takes more will and determination than any 100-mile race.
[tab title=”Elizabeth Gonzales”]
- I strongly agree with #3 Jean…no pity from myself or others…your experience with your sister reminds me of my mom’s she’s gone through numerous surgeries from tumor in the uterus to appendix removed after rupturing and she stays strong never showed a sign of weakness or never said “I can’t do this” she moved on and kept going, my mom is my motivation and inspiration and think if of her when I run!
[tab title=”Rachel Ballard”]
- Relentless Forward Progress. I read that book last year and don’t recall anything but the title. Every step forward is a step forward.
- Eventually in a race everything else peels away and there is just a binary decision: go or stop. Only one answer. If you stop you don’t get to choose go.
- Pacers: in themselves, great people, and they also represent all the other people who are there for you.
[tab title=”Brian Ricketts”]
- The months leading up to the race are 90% physical and 10% mental. Sure, you have to be motivated enough to put in the miles and workouts, but it’s mostly about the training.
- The race itself is 1% physical and 99% mental. Don’t get me wrong, 100 milers are extremely hard on the body, and they most certainly will hurt, but if you have put in the training, you CAN finish. You just have to convince yourself that you WILL finish and aren’t going to stop. Unless you are injured/sick/woefully unprepared for the elements, there is no good physical reason to drop (yes, I have dropped in a 100 before, and it still haunts me).
- Be flexible during the race. We all have goals heading into a race. Few things are more deflating than realizing you are not going to hit your “A” goal. It’s very easy to pack it in at this point, but you have to tell yourself that I’m going to finish NO MATTER WHAT. Change your expectations. After all, we are lucky to have the opportunity to do these things. A day on the trails (even if it hurt) sure beats most other things :)
[tab title=”Jason Crockett”]
- Allow yourself to experience the emotions hurt, bad, sad etc.
- Take physical stock: is this pain or injury. If this is an injury then the important thing is to take care of your body first. If it is pain, what can you to remedy the situation?
- Remember, this is where YOU wanted to be. no one is forcing you into this stuff and you are here for your own reasons.
[tab title=”Amanda Alvarado”]
- So I relate running ultras to living life. Some obstacles and struggles happen in our lives abruptly or they may be gradual until they are life changing. How do we deal with them in life? How do we deal with them on the course? I remind myself of these things when I am out there. I go through my personal journey and uplift myself. I believe the person inside of us is our biggest up-lifter. It always should be!
- The motivation and inspiration I get from my hubby is so strong. He knows me like no other. He has seen me at my worst ever I life and knows I was able to get out of the post partum depression hole. And all he has to do is tell me how proud he is of me and I know what it means and where it comes from. Guess I could have just listed “Lalo” there.
- Running after having a family has been so different than running before the husband and kids. It’s fun for me to challenge my body after everything it’s been through and at the same time I always hope to inspire other mothers or women out there. I always want to inspire other women and hope that the message is that your running life doesn’t end after having kids. Anything is possible. So I remind myself of that as well. I think running makes me a better wife, mommy, daughter, sister, friend, etc… So I have that song in my head at races at times and sometimes sing it out loud when it gets tough. “This one is for the girls!” -by Martina McBride.
“I think I still have so much to learn about digging deep!! I had a hard day, and what saved me truly was Liza’s tips on making lists. I was ready to take what came and FINISH. I knew what mental obstacles I could/ would face and I knew what I wanted to do if/ when those obstacles came up. I had decided that I was at Pinhoti to finish, even if that meant crawling across that finish line. So, really, the best advice I have is to think about your own whys for doing what your doing. Think about what could get in your way and decide what you are willing to let stop you from reaching your goals.”
Congratulations Melanie, on a great finish.