I found out early on as a college football player during three-a-days in 100 degree heat that what I enjoyed most about the experience was the bond created with your teammates. This 100 person community is what made the experience as we slugged it out together for the next 5 months during our 60 hours a week training regimen. It was football. It was tough, but man was it fun!
After graduating, I found myself filling that void of challenge in the outdoors through climbing, hiking, mountaineering and eventually trail running. Since I have immersed myself in the outdoor community, I have made some incredible friends whose bonds I am sure have only been reinforced through the fun we call suffering in the mountains.
It wasn't until the summer of 2010 when a group of us “hikers & climbers” decided to do a well-known hiking link-up in New Hampshire call the Pemigewasset Loop ( I am sure you've done this one!). We started out early that morning running as much as we could, bagging all 14 4,000’ peaks along the way. None of us were “ultrarunners” at the time. We had no real knowledge of how to fuel or pace a 38 mile run. We were completely drained, but that day I filled a gap I had been longing to fill – challenge based endurance effort with great people.
That adventure gave me a new sense of what the outdoors meant to me and I have since tried to take full advantage of the people and experiences to be found in the mountains.
About 4 seasons ago, I sought out new challenges and decided to hold myself accountable and signed up for the Leadville 100 Trail race. I had not been much of a runner – but I knew a goal that hefty would require me to learn quickly and stay focused.
I trained hard that year, completed my first ultra, and then felt fantastic winning my age group in the Northfork 50 mile trail race. The NF50 is an incredible race that truly embodies the spirit of the mountain running community. All the training paid off and I ended the summer of with a successful finish of the LT100. I learned a lot about ultra-races that season. At the end of it all, it just reinforced my love of “Long Days”.
I have spent a lot of days in the mountains, whether that be an afternoon of running in the foothills of Golden, or becoming the 2nd team ever to complete the Elks Range Traverse in one push. Each opportunity has allowed me to challenge myself physically and emotionally with others who share those same desires.
It’s been 4 January’s since I registered for my first official endurance competition and met even more incredible people to share the journey with me.
In 2014, I completed the Leadman Competition in beautiful Leadville, CO. Ever since my first 100 mile trail race in Leadville I have fallen in love with that tiny mining town. The Leadman is a progressive endurance series that requires the candidate to complete 6 endurance events totaling in 326.2 miles in 63 days. Successful completion of each event grants you entry into the next. Miss a cut-off or DNF, and you’re done for the season. I preformed well for my first time attempting this goal, ranking 5th out of over 100 candidates.
In addition to the leadman, I completed several other endurance trail runs, MTB events and alpine climbing missions.
As we blast into 2015, I've put together a pretty fun and constantly growing schedule of events with some official, unofficial and plan old fun missions!
- Powder Keg Race (Ski Mountaineering) 3/6/2015
- Winter Longs Peak Duathlon (unofficial Bike/Run/Climb) - Before end of Winter
- Elk Mountain Grand Traverse (Ski Mountaineering) 3/272015
- Grand Canyon R2R2R Run (attempt to go around 8 hours and beat last years 9 hour time) 4/4/2015
- Nolans 14 attempt (Early June)
- San Juan Solstice 50Mile (Trail Race) 6/27/2015
- The Picnic (Unofficial Bike/Swim/Run/Climb) Mid-July
- Greenland Climbing Expeditions (7/20-8/10)
- Coaching Runner - Leadville 100Mile (Trail Race) 8/21/2015
- Nolans 14 attempt 9/5/2015
- The Bear 100 Mile (Trail Race) 9/25/2015
- AXS 30hr Adventure Race 10/10/2015