What’s 314 Miles? I’m in for the Last Annual Vol State 500K Road Race

I started 2011 with two BIG running goals (to me at least).  One was to run and complete a 100 mile ultra marathon. Back in February, I was able to finish my first 100 miler down in Texas at the Rocky Raccoon 100 mile Trail Race.

The other big race this year I wanted to run (and hopefully finish) is the Last Annual Vol State 500K Road Race (yes, that’s 314 miles) that takes place every July in Tennessee.  Well it starts in Missouri and finishes in Georgia, but 300 of those miles wind through the Volunteer state. Which can get rather toasty in mid July.

The race was started by Lazarus Lake (Gary Cantrell) in 1981.  Runners have a maximum of 10 days to finish the race and end up at ‘The Rock.’

I needed several dominoes to fall into place before I could commit to Vol State.  All the dominoes have fallen.  The planning has begun.  This is my public confession of my insanity and confirmation of my intent to be at the starting line in Dorena, Missouri on July 14th for the 2011 Last Annual Vol State 500K.

My cousins Erick and Blake from Kansas are coming down to crew me for the week.

I have no clue if I can complete this race. I’ve done 100 miles before, once! This will be 214 more miles on top of that.

I believe I can, but it’s the unknown and makes me a bit crazy in the head thinking about it.  I stay up late at night looking at maps and attempting to come up with a strategy on how to attack it. I will have to be very disciplined and run within myself until I reach the finish.

Any friends or runners who want to join me at any part, and run that day or several miles that day with me, are welcome to join me.  Email me or tweet me @bayou and we will set it up.

I am going to try to live blog the race (while competing) here on Run It Fast and also on my Facebook Running Fan Page (Like it HERE).  You can also follow me on Twitter @bayou if you so desire.

Who Benefits From Such a Selfish Act of Running 314 miles?

I have few policies in life. One of those policies is that if you are going to do something that could result in your death, then you should raise money in the process to help benefit those less fortunate.

So here is what I’m going to do in connection with running a 500K.  I run a lot of races.  Runers at all of these races, even half-marathons and 5K’s, almost always rant and complain because there wasn’t enough water or a water table close enough for them.  Runners will have the biggest hissy fit if they go more than 15-20 minutes without a volunteer standing there offering them water.

So I’ve decided to raise money through Charity: Water to help build a water well in one of 17 developing third world countries. The well will provide actual clean drinking water to men, women, and children who desperately need clean water for survival.

With your help, we will raise $5,000 over the next couple of months. With that money, we will provide a permanent water source to 250 men, women, and children in need.  That’s 50 families which usually makes up an entire community.


The reach of clean water doesn’t stop at hydration. It allows more time for other essential things that can be done instead of walking for hours to find water. Women and children can spend more time learning to read & write and developing skills needed for survival in the 21st century.

View my Charity: Water page to help build a well to give water to 250 people for life.

DONATE HERE: 314 Miles – Water for 250 men, women, and children!

If you don’t have much today then donate a little. Then come back and donate a little more. Just like 314 miles, we will help build a well a little piece at a time.
Thanks in advance for your truly amazing support!

- joshua


I will be running the 2011 Last Annual Vol State  500K in memory of Charlie Reagan (Read More Here).

A great running friend who was murdered on June 16, 2011.

Unofficial (Official) Last Annual Vol State 500K Website

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This post was written by:

- who has written 1051 posts on Run It Fast®.

Joshua Holmes has completed 197 marathons/ultramarathons while running 100+ miles 43 including races such as the Badwater 135, Western States 100, The Last Annual Vol State 500K (3x). His favorite races to date are the Vol State 500K, Badwater 135, Barkley Fall Classic, Catalina Eco Marathon, Chimera 100, Across The Years, Savage Gulf Trail Marathon, Strolling Jim 40 Miler, Tunnel Hill 100, RUTS, EC100 and the Flying Monkey Marathon in his home state of Tennessee. Follow @bayou Follow @joshuaholmes on Instagram

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6 Responses to “What’s 314 Miles? I’m in for the Last Annual Vol State 500K Road Race”

  1. Dude, this is absolutely insane stuff. Quite happy for you mate. I’m sure you’ll have a blast of a time and a very very memorable run to endear. The fact that you have decided to plunge into participating itself is testimony of your determination and strong-will, which as you know is half the job done (the mental part). To add to it, you’re noble cause in it. Prayers and best wishes, i bet you’ll rock.

    Love and Regards,
    Navin

  2. Kristie says:

    Great Cause, Joshua Holmes. This is your family’s public support response ;) We love you!

  3. Angela Ivory says:

    I will be rooting for you and following along, Joshua. I’m hoping to get out on the course to see all of you. I know that you can do this! Good luck and have a wonderful adventure!

  4. John Price says:

    Joshua, you will have no problem finishing this. Yes it will be tough at times, especially during the heat of the day. Remember Constant forward Motion! For a crewed runner it is best to hit the road early 3 to 4am and take a break during the heat of the day 1 to 5pm and come back out for another 6 or 7 hours in the evening. Getting 15 or 16 hours a day, even walking will get you 45 to 50 miles a day and a 5 or 6 day finish. Just remember you don’t have anything else to do you might as well be out there moving!
    See you at the Last Supper!
    John

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