No matter how challenging a run is, you can find me looking up my next race within a day or two following a finish, and then I start reworking my training program to account for any race specific training I need. Crossing that finish line becomes an addiction, which I fully acknowledge and own my sickness.
I had all my races planned back in December, but I just found out this week that my goal 100 for 2015 is full! Why didn’t I register for the Bear 100 earlier? Because in the past few years Bear has never filled up, so I’ve been busy paying for races I knew had a history of filling up. This is a risky game we runners play of not wanting to register too early, but not waiting too long.
Bear is two weeks after the Wasatch 100 in September, which usually means most of the ultrarunners are recovering during Bear. I’ve heard rumors that some runners are signing up for both Bear and Wasatch and then if they don’t make a cut off in Wasatch or have to drop for some reason early in the race, they get a second chance at Bear. The two races are similar in terrain.
So I’m on the waitlist, which means, if the above is true and runners are registered for both events, I may not find out I am running Bear until the week or two before the race, possibly even a day or two before.
Training for a 100 is a ton of work and Bear will require an extra helping of difficulty. I will need to work on trail descents, long climbs, and heat. Bear 100 has 24,000 feet of climbing and temperatures can go from 90 degrees Fahrenheit to below freezing during the same race.
I will have to train as if I am going to run. However, I want to have a backup option in the event I don’t get in. I don’t train just to race. A race is more of one more thing to motivate me to get out of bed in the morning and challenge myself each day. I enjoy the running, cycling, and swimming just for itself. A race gives me the opportunity to run in an area I probably wouldn’t run otherwise.
I’ve been looking at the Stagecoach 100 in Arizona, which goes from Flagstaff to the Grand Canyon. It’s a smaller race, but that’s just fine with me.