Tag Archive | "ultra marathon"

Yellowstone Teton 100 Buckle 2012

Yellowstone-Teton 100 Mile Buckle (2012)



This is the buckle for the Yellowstone-Teton 100 Miler that was held on October 6-7, 2012 in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming (West Yellowstone, WY to Driggs, ID).

Awesome buckle! Love the unique shape. I want one!

Congratulations to RIF #1 Joshua who PRd the race by over an hour, came in 5th Overall, and won his Age Group! Here is his Age Group award:


[Medal photo submitted by RIF #1 Joshua Holmes.  Follow him on Twitter @bayou]

Posted in Bling, Buckles, Featured, Ultra MarathonComments (0)

Josh at YT100

Crewing At Yellowstone-Teton 100 Mile

RIF #1 Joshua Holmes at Yellowstone-Teton 100

Note from Lisa: The following is a post from my blog about crewing RIF #1 Joshua Holmes at the Yellowstone-Teton 100 Mile race on October 6-7, 2012. It was my first time crewing for a friend and I did it for a few reasons:

  • I wanted to give back to the running community that has helped me so much.
  • I wanted to do this for Josh because I’ve seen how much support he’s given others and not just those in RIF – The Club.
  • Selfishly, I wanted to see what a 100 mile race was like from the inside as prep for my first 100 miler, Javelina Jundred.
  • Also selfishly…I’d never been to Idaho, Montana, or Wyoming and wanted to see them.

The whole experience was amazing! Read on to check my perspective on the Yellowstone-Teton 100…

Crewing At Yellowstone-Teton 100 Mile

I have not run in 4 days! 4! And I don’t even care. That’s pretty wild, eh? But I experienced one of the most amazing, fun, and inspiring weekends ever so it more than made up for the lack of running for myself. Besides, I got to see plenty of running while crewing Joshua Holmes (@bayou). This was my first time  crewing a runner during a 100 miler so I was a little nervous. Of course, I didn’t let Josh know that! But I really wanted to help him finish this run and PR so I had a few goals for this weekend:

For Josh

1. Get him to the race start.

2. Help him finish and PR at YT100.

3. Get him home safe!

For Me

1. Don’t get lost during the race.

2. Stay awake.

3. Don’t lock the keys in the car.

I’m happy to report that all goals were met!

So, that’s the short story. The long story is this…

(Yeah, you knew that was coming, right?)


So on Thursday, I picked up Josh on the way to LAX. We were flying to Salt Lake City and then on to Idaho Falls. There was some traffic and the line to go thru the checkpoint was super long so it was iffy but I finagled us into the short line and we made it to the plane on time. Woo! 1st flight was a go. We only had 30 min between flights so when we landed in SLC, we ran thru the airport to our next flight and made that in time too. Woo! Flights…check.

We stayed in Idaho Falls on Thursday night and drove to West Yellowstone on Friday after hitting up Wal-Mart for supplies. We made it to West Yellowstone around 3:30 with plenty of time to spare before the runner’s meeting at 5. To pass the time, we went to the Grizzly & Wolf Discovery Center to check things out. I almost lost him to a Grizzly there!

But I was able to save him from the grizzly so he made it to the runner’s meeting. 😉

After the meeting, we went and got dinner (delicious lasagna) and then I dropped him off at the hotel while I went to get a few more things. Then I went back to the hotel to get as much sleep as possible to prep for the night ahead.

In the morning, I woke up and sent Josh a text to make sure he was up and then got ready, ate, and packed up. I got Josh’s stuff too and packed them in the car so he could head to the race start. He got to race start on time…barely…but on time. Goal #1 for Josh complete!!! Thank god.


So…a little background first. Before we arrived in Idaho, we thought the overnight temps for the race would be 26 degrees…which is flipping cold, right? But then Josh had checked on Friday and the predicted low for West Yellowstone was SEVEN degrees! Insane! But Josh was going thru with it as did all the other runners. Brave souls.

Luckily…ok, not lucky but at least a little better…it was 12 degrees when the runners started out. I took longer to pack the car than I thought so I didn’t make it to the start line in time for the start but decided to wait in front of the hotel where they would be passing twice. I cheered Josh and the other runners as they passed me going and then coming back and then jumped in the car to head out on the course…and warm up!

I decided to go out a few miles and wait for Josh. I parked by the course photographer and the flash as he took pictures helped identify the runners in the dark. And then there was Josh! And Oh.My.God…he was covered in frost. All of his hair was white with frost, from his eyebrows to his beard to his hair. It kind of freaked me out a little but I didn’t say anything. He told me that his bottle had frozen and he gave it to me. The water bottle that I had taken out with me to fill his Amphipod had already started to freeze too. Yes, it was that cold. As I was driving on the course, the temp dropped to 9 degrees! But Josh ran on and I drove out a couple of miles to meet him. AFTER slipping and falling as I ran back to the car. Doh! But no damage thankfully!

After that, I would leap frog Josh on the course. He’d ask me to wait for him 2-4 miles ahead and then I’d give him whatever he needed: water, nuun, roctane, boost, etc. He would usually tell me what he wanted at the next stop so I could have it ready but sometimes I’d have to scramble. There were a couple of mishaps along the way.

At one point, he told me that he needed to use the restroom and I must have stopped at every building along the road and they were all closed! One of the gas stations was even closed already for the winter. That is so weird. But I finally found a place. Then he asked me to find him a cheeseburger and the only cheeseburger I could find was the last one at this one little store. I microwaved it with their presets but when he tried to eat it, the burger patty was rock solid. Damn it. He didn’t say anything but I’m sure he was disappointed. 🙁

But he kept running. And it got warmer so he could start shedding layers.

Around mile 30, his knee started giving him trouble. And it was bad. He put a knee brace on and kept running.

He seemed really down about it and thought he might have to DNF. I told him to just be smart about it. But he changed shoes and kept running. He was a machine. And I was really impressed by him.

Saturday, during the day was interesting for me because I not only got to watch Josh but the other runners around him. I’d see the same mix of runners each time I drove ahead to wait for him. They helped me keep track of him. I’d see this runner or that runner and know that he would be coming soon. Then I would grab what I think he’d need or what he told me wanted and run out to meet him. Then I would walk/run with him a little to get the bottle or gel packet and instructions for the next stop.

The other thing that was cool was that I got to meet the crews for the other runners and we would talk while we waited for our runner to come by. And I would get to see what they were doing for their runners and learn a little bit about everyone.

And of course, the views along the course were pretty darn cool!


When Josh hit the aid station past the 50 miles and he was still running/walking and didn’t talk about stopping again, I knew he would finish. So then it was about getting ready for the coming night for both of us. He came thru the aid station at mile 60.5 in 10th place and after that, I saw that he was starting to pass some people. He was doing amazing!

So the day time in the sun was nice. No jacket required. And then the sun set.

And the temperature dropped at least 20 degrees faster than you can put on a glove. I was not looking forward to the night ahead. I’d froze my butt off in the short time between the start of the race and sunrise. What would it be like with hours out there? For me, the other crew and most of all for the runners? We started adding layers to Josh and eventually hand warmers. I’m not sure how much it helped but he kept running. Like a machine.

For a while, Josh ran with another runner named Tom who was doing the race without a crew. Josh asked me to get him water at one of our stops and I did. And then later that night, I asked Tom again if he needed water and while I was filling his bottle he told me Josh was doing well but to not turn on the heater for him so he wouldn’t be tempted to stay in the car. But there were a couple of times that Josh asked me to turn on the heater and I did because I didn’t have the heart to say no with how cold it was. That and he kept asking for something hot to eat at the aid stations but they didn’t have anything hot until about mile 90! But Josh was very disciplined so he got going as soon as he’d eaten or changed or whatever. I didn’t have to push him. He was pushing himself.

The night was freezing! But it was beautiful. There was an awesome moonrise w/a golden moon. And then there were a bajillion stars. I made a bunch of wishes: that Josh’s knee would stop hurting, that he would finish with a PR, that I wouldn’t get lost, etc. I’m glad a few of them worked. 😉

Josh was passing more people on the course and it caught me off guard at one stop. The pattern was solo light, solo light, pair of lights, Josh, pair of lights. And then at one point he became the second solo light! I was like wow, he must be have switched into beast mode. So after that it got a little lonelier since there wasn’t other crew around. I’d kind of relied on them leap frogging me too so I would know I was headed in the right direction and I had to do the last part completely on my own, but didn’t get lost once! Woo! So Goal #1 for me was accomplished.

At the 2nd to the last stop, I almost fell asleep. I closed my eyes for a few seconds and the clicking of the hazard lights was hypnotic. It was close, but I didn’t sleep. Goal #2 for me accomplished. But that stop and the last stop were rough for me. At the last stop, I was walking toward Josh and listening to these dogs barking and wondering if they were going to come out at us and it took me a while to realize he was telling me he needed boost. But I finally got the message and got some for him.

And that was my last stop with him and I drove ahead to meet him at the end. He was really doing this! Just a few miles left after everything that he’d fought thru – his knee, the freezing cold, not getting the hot food he needed, me getting things wrong sometimes. He was about to finish.

The race finished at Dreamchasers, which is the store owned by Lisa Smith-Batchen and her husband. Lisa was out on the course so I was talking with her husband while we waited for Josh to come in. Being out the cold and the excitement of seeing Josh finish woke me up a little but I was still not 100% awake, I think, because when he came running in he asked me where my camera was and I was like damn, how could I have forgot that. I didn’t even have my phone on me. 🙁

So, I didn’t catch the big moment but Josh finished in 21:23:55, over an hour PR for him AND he was 5th Overall and 1st in his Age Group! Totally amazing considering his knee and the weather!

So Goal #2 for Josh accomplished! Oh, and I never locked the keys in the car either so Goal #3 for me was accomplished too. Funny, that Josh told me after he was worried about that too. And about me getting lost. Whatever!


So the race was done but my crewing duties weren’t over. I still had to get Josh home but our first priority was to get him warm and feeling better after running the 100. But I got him safely to the hotel after the race and then to our hotel in Idaho Falls the next day too. And I got him to the airport on time. And I got him home after we landed in LAX. And that’s even with him deciding to take the roller coaster, crazy narrow, steep detour to his house. It was fun…sort of…because he showed me where Steven Tyler lived but my gas warning light came on so when he said did I want to do any more sight seeing, I was like no, let’s just get you home. I was so relieved to drop him off! I’d gotten home in one piece so Goal #3 for Josh accomplished.


Seriously, the crewing was not hard at all. He was patient with me and never acted like a diva. I almost wish he would have though because he was too stubborn to let me help! If you’re reading this Josh…learn to accept help from your friends without us having to twist your arm. Sheesh. 😉

I learned a lot during this experience. I saw some beautiful scenery. Met some amazing runners and their crews. And got to watch a good friend accomplish an incredible goal. Definitely a successful and rewarding experience and one I would do again in a heart beat.

If you get the opportunity to do this for a friend, I highly recommend it. You will be inspired.

Oh, one last pic of the two of us back at the finish the next day where we hung out for a while (also a lot of fun since there were other runners and crew back at the finish too).

Thanks for reading!

[Photos provided by Joshua Holmes and Lisa Gonzales]

Posted in Race Reports, Running, Ultra MarathonComments (1)

North Country Run Medal 2012_2

North Country Run Medal (2012)

This is the medal for the North Country Run that was held on August 25, 2012 in Wellston, Michigan.

The North Country Run includes a 50 Mile run, a marathon, and a half marathon. Check out the size of that medal! Love the detail on the medal too. This would be an awesome medal to earn.

Here’s a couple more photos of it and the race shirt:



[Medals submitted by RIF #108 Mark Sikkila – follow him on Twitter @marksikkila and Kim LoBretto – follow Kim on Twitter @LoBrettoK]

Posted in Bling, Featured, Half Marathon, Marathon, Medals, Ultra MarathonComments (0)

IAU World Cup 50K Medal_back 2012

IAU World Cup 50K Medal (2012)

This is the 1st place medal for the IAU World Cup 50K that was held on August 19, 2012 in Daugavpils, Latvia.

Congratulations to RIF #133 Michelle Mitchell for the win! Wish her luck as she heads to the 50K World Championships in the Fall!

Here is a photo of the back of the medal:


[Medal submitted by RIF #133 Michelle Mitchell – follow her on Twitter @runnerchickey]

Posted in Bling, Featured, International, Medals, Ultra MarathonComments (0)


Run It Fast Club Member Profile – Jennifer Whitley #160

Jennifer Whitley RIF #160

This week’s Run It Fast Club profile is Jennifer Whitley #160. I was lucky enough to meet Jennifer at the Jackson Jackass 50K. I found out when I read her Race Report a few days after it was over that she’d had a rough day out there but finished. Then I heard that she had a bad fall at the Jackal Trail Marathon that required stitches and caused her to DNF for the first time in her 13 years of running… but she was still smiling. Finally, I read her response to our question about her proudest moment and came to the only conclusion possible… Jennifer is one tough runner!

Read on to find out more about Jennifer:

Name:  Jennifer Whitley
RIF #:  160
Facebook: Yes

Years running: 13 yrs
Favorite race:  Avenue  of the Giants Marathon
Favorite bling: St George Marathon


Who inspires your running and why?
So many people inspire me, but one that stands out is my friend Phil Weiland, who is 78! When I joined my first running group, the Las Vegas Track Club, in 2000, Phil was always encouraging me to push myself to run farther and faster, and to never give up. Phil is an amazing person. He still runs countless marathons and 5k races, even though he has suffered a stroke which blinded him in one eye.

If you could go for a run with any famous person (living or dead), who would it be and why?
I wouldn’t mind going for a run with Christopher Walken. I could hear him now… He would say “Jen… two little mice fell in a bucket of cream. The first mouse quickly gave up… and drowned. The second mouse… wouldn’t quit. He struggled so hard that eventually… he churned that cream into butter… and crawled out. Jen… as of this moment… I am that second mouse!”

What is the strangest/funniest thing you’ve ever seen while running?
It’s not that funny and probably not the strangest but I do find it strange when I come across a lone shoe on any path…

What’s the most beautiful place that you’ve run?
The Valley of Fire is about 50 miles northeast of Las Vegas. With beautiful majestic red mountains, this is Nevada’s oldest and largest state park. The valley gets its name from the red sandstone formations and the stark beauty of the Mojave Desert. Ancient trees and early man are represented throughout the park by areas of petrified wood and 3,000 year-old Indian petroglyphs. This is always one of my favorite and challenging marathons to run.

Which of your running routes makes you the happiest and why?
I really enjoy Bryant Grove 8 mile trail. It’s a single track trail that’s mostly shaded path that changes from dirt, sand, stumps, large rock and pebbles. You can almost always spot deer and you are shore side throughout the path. You can listen to the water hit the shore and it’s just peaceful.  4 miles in you end up at a small beach side and when you return you can go canoeing at Couchville Lake for 5 bucks.

Why do you race?
I love the feeling I get before a race… the excitement, the preparation, and going to be seeing friends at events. And of course how I feel after. It just feels good!

Big races or small races? And why?
I do prefer the smaller races because they are a bit more intimate and peaceful.  I am all for a more peaceful run. I’m not into all the hullabaloo.

What running moment are you most proud of?
My most proud moment would have to be finishing my first 50 miler, where I had twisted my ankle at mile four.

If you can’t run, _________?:
Nevada is where I found my passion for running. I started running to drop some weight, but after I lost the pounds I could no longer stop running. It just made me feel right. I have had many great experiences traveling around and participating in marathons and different races throughout California, Nevada, Utah, New York and now Tennessee! If I can’t run… well… you know what happens… life seems unbalanced.


I don’t know about you but I can picture and hear that run and conversation with Christopher Walken in my head! Seriously though, Jennifer’s answers remind me that if we don’t give up and we keep on trying, we can succeed. Just like Jennifer and her running inspiration, Phil Weiland. Oh, and like the second little mouse too. 😉 If we just keep going no matter what obstacles life throws in our way, we will finish and hopefully… Run It Fast!

Thanks for sharing Jennifer!

If you’d like to join Run It Fast – The Club or would like more information about it, please click this link:

Run It Fast – The Club (JOIN TODAY)

[All photos submitted by Jennifer Whitley and Naresh Kumar]


Posted in Interviews, Running, THE CLUBComments (2)

Kanawha Trace 50K Medal 2012

Kanawha Trace 50K Medal (2012)

Here is the medal for the Kanawha Trace 50K that took place on July 28, 2012 in Ona, West Virginia.

A very solid medal for a difficult trail race!


[medal photo submitted by RIF #22 Wade Anderson. Follow him on Twitter @WadeAnderson50]



Posted in Bling, Featured, Medals, Trails, Ultra MarathonComments (0)

Vermont 100 Medal 2012

Vermont 100 Mile Endurance Run Medal (2012)

Here is the medal for the Vermont 100 Mile Endurance Run that was held on July 21-22, 2012 in West Windsor, Vermont.

It’s a colorful medal but it should have been a buckle! Congratulations to RIF #134 Robin Mancinelli for completing her first 100 miler in 24:31! You did awesome!


[Medal submitted by RIF #134 Robin Mancinelli. Follow Robin on Twitter @Robinmrr2]

Posted in Bling, Featured, Medals, Ultra MarathonComments (0)


Day 10: 2012 Last Annual Vol State Live Blog

We are getting down to the wire and there are still 2 runners on the course! Diane is looking good to make the 10 day cutoff but Marvin…well, he hasn’t given up! And I think that is so awesome. Please join me in sending them all the positive Run It Fast vibes you have as they make their way through these last few miles!

I’ll try to stay post as many updates as we get for Diane and Marvin so check back to see how they are doing.  If you didn’t get a chance to read the live blog for any of the previous 9 days, you can check them out here:

Day 1      Day 2      Day 3     Day 4       Day 5      Day 6       Day 7       Day 8       Day 9

And don’t forget, you can always:

-See what Joshua (@bayou) is up to on twitter or search the tag #VS500 on twitter.
-Check out The Last Annual Vol State Road Race page on Facebook.
-Check out the Vol State 2012 Map to see where the runners are (updated 2x per day w/ last location).
-Carl Laniak is adding photos to his album if you’d like to check those out as well:  Vol State 2012 Album
-Naresh is at the Vol State now and taking photos! Check it out: Naresh’s Vol State 2012 Album 

So far today:

Message from Lisa: Ok, Vol State is done but I’m going to keep posting Marvin updates to this last blog. I don’t know about you but I am so inspired by him and his journey this year. I will be following him all the way to the rock!

Ultrarunningmom is also posting Marvin’s journey (with pictures) here: Ultrarunningmom.blogspot.com

Message from Lisa: I’ve never met Marvin but he has inspired me no end during the past week and a half! What incredible determination in the face of so many obstacles! I am so happy for him! Congratulations Marvin from all of us here at Run It Fast!

Email from Carl at 2:12 pm 

11days 6 hrs 46 min 53 sec

12 marathon distances in 11 days….in july in Tennessee.
(pic from mrs laz)


Email from Naresh at 2:06 pm

And he has finished

Email from Naresh at 1:35 pm

He is in the corn fields right now!!!

Email from Carl at 1:05 pm

Marv and stu on castle rock road

Update on Marvin from Laz at 8:38 am

vol-state update 20.2- a place for old men

marvin is across the tennessee river bridge; approx 304 miles done.
10 to go.
what a journey.
he came heat trained,
instead got days of rain…
his feet were destroyed
(if you havent seen the picture, someone should post a link)
i thought he should quit.
but marv & stu consulted with each other,
and decided to go on.
during their struggles to reach hohenwald (only 144 miles in)
i was sure he should quit.
but a visit to a clinic in hohenwald gave the old man team new life.
that was the first time stu (stupid to wise-ass telephones) told me;
“marv really wants to finish this. he wants to do ‘one more big thing.’ and i really want to see him do it.”
i stood in awe as they fought back against the time limit,
whittling away their deficit.
and just when it looked like they had it….
the rains returned.
and marvin’s feet bore the brunt.
as i “watched” their terrible struggle from shelbyville (225) to manchester (250)
once again, i thought they should quit.
my “pep talks” centered around not endangering anyone’s health.
but the old men never took their eyes off the prize.
and mile by painful mile they fought on.
it wasnt until they reached the top of monteagle
that i knew they were really going to do it.
against all odds.
in the face of unimaginable adversity.
two old men were going to combine their determination.
as a team they were going to do ‘one more big thing.’
but the vol-state is brutally unforgiving.
even when you know you can make it, it still has to be done the hard way.
there were still 42 miles of long, slow, painful effort to take care of.
workmanlike, unflinching, the old man team set about doing it.
this morning stu called to tell me they were “over the bridge.”
vol staters instantly know what that means.
the only sweeter words are “on the rock.”
as stu told me;
“you dont have to rush. we arent making a young man’s final push.”
he was talking 6 hours for those last 10 miles…
including the climb up sand mountain,
and (of course) the corn maze.
i dont care how long it takes,
i just want to be there.
it ought to be quite a sight.
usually we have carl, or naresh (young men)
to make sure the wobbly finishers dont topple off the cliff.
today i guess there will only be me and stu and marv.
i think we will get it done.
there was a movie a few years back.
some depressing thing about over the hillers.
it was called “no place for old men.”
there wont probably ever be a movie about marv and stu’s epic adventure.
but if there was, it would have to be called;
“a place for old men.”

Email from Stewart at 4:52 am 

we are here in s. pittsburg, waiting for marvin.
abi and lillie are sleeping in their car, and i am outside watching for the maestro
he may need to sleep here, but i hope he can push to across the bridge first, because the traffic here is fierce and merciless a nd there aint no easy way to get to the bridge. the destructions say basically, good luck you are on your own.
i will call gary when he gets across the bridge, with an estimate of six to eight hours  for him to reach the rock.
its about five am cdst now….best estimate two pm finish time.
what a journey!! 

Email from Stewart at 6:22 pm


marvin is on the road again, with a 50k left at this time. he slept in the shade through the heat of the day. i predict and hope for a good night, headed for jasper.
its a wonderful experiment….lets see what happens

Email from Stewart at 1:55 pm

Re: vol-state update 20- ten daze in tenn… see?

we are havin fun now counting down the miles….
34 to go!

Update of runner status by Laz at 7:40 am

 vol-state update 20- ten daze in tenn… see?

so now we are down to marvin and stu.
the passage of day 10 finds them just past monteagle,
at mile 277.

they have broken oprah,
and taken the vol-state into overtime.

talked with marvin a while,
he is in good spirits & remains focused on the rock.
hopefully getting his feet re-dressed will be enough to get him one more good day.

as he is on top of the mountain,
the proper cheer is;
“onward, and downward!”


Email from Stewart at 6:08 am


marvin at top of monteagle mtn.

49 hrs to make 40 miles

Email from Stewart at 2:54 am (even though he won’t hit the 10 day mark, Marvin is still going! How cool is that!)

marvin update

marvin is clear of pelham
he is going through a good spell
looking forward to climbing the mountain to monteagle,
not so much to the downhill, which scrunches your toes.

abi, after some sleep, will head this way, and we will dry and dress his feet.

he is a little behind the monday am finish schedule, but ahead of a tuesday finish.

he has a real bad foot, and is very very tired, but he is trudging along.

Posted by Naresh at 11:56 pm

Email from Ultrarunningmom at 11:20 pm

#14 – Diane Taylor

9 days, 16 hours, 2 minutes, 1 second

Email from Naresh at 11:08 pm

Re: vol-state update 19- 9.5 days

Diane is lost in the corn field. Laz gave her directions and hope she makes it. Good thing, we have Big with us if we need to sniff her out of the woods.

Email from Naresh at 8:38 pm

Re: vol-state update 19- 9.5 days

Diane is about to make the climb. 10k to the finish.

Naresh added more photos to his album!

Update of runner status by Laz at 7:24 pm

vol-state update 19- 9.5 days

the vol state is winding down.

diane tortured race officials with an extended break in kimball,
but should be on or over the tennessee river bridge at this moment.
10 miles remaining.

marv has made it out of manchester, at 253 miles,
but things are going very slowly.
his able crew, stu, is monitoring him closely.
the motto of team skagerberg has become;
“health is the first priority.”

unconfirmed reports have oprah retiring at 241.

laz (very, very tired)

Posted by Naresh at 12:39 pm

Email from Naresh at 12:17 pm

 Psyche just finished

Psyche finished 09:04:57:01

Email From Stewart at 10:37 am

 marv report

we are getting underway from manchester at about ten thirty am. he slept over twelve hours.

off to the penultimate assault… i hope

Email from Charles at 8:16 am

 Re: vol state update 18-9 days

Psyche headed out @ 5:55 this morning and is halfway to the rock, going through new hope right now

Update of runner status by Laz at 8:04 am

 vol state update 18-9 days

psyche-no report, must assume still at 297
diane 283- looks like night finish
marvin-242- the 10 day finish escaped during yet another thunderstorm

i need to go home & take care of some things.
psyche hasnt reported in 24 hours, altho i got a report from a bystander last night.
hopefully we will hear something in time to meet her at the rock.

marvin’s 10 day finish, already a longshot, evaporated in the latest round of thunderstorms.
he & his magnificent crew, stu, are focused on finishing with health intact…

an approach i thoroughly endorse.

it is not noble to endanger your life in an ultra.
it is foolish at best.
perhaps selfish.

my emotions about marv’s attempt need time to settle in.
there are so many.

but once again he is my hero.


Posted in Running, Ultra Marathon, Vol StateComments (0)

Day 9: 2012 Last Annual Vol State Live Blog

Day 9: 2012 Last Annual Vol State Live Blog

There are only 5 runners left on the Vol State 500K course. Some so close and a few with a long way to go still but they continue to keep moving forward. I saw a post on Facebook about how a lot of the running websites/blogs follow a race just until the front runners come in. Forgetting the fact that there are runners out there until the very end, whether it’s a 48 hour cutoff or a 10 day cutoff. Run It Fast isn’t just about being fast. It’s about pushing your limits and going farther…and sometimes faster…than you’ve ever done before. It’s about seeing what you are made of  and the runners in the Last Annual Vol State 500K certainly embody that. They aren’t in it for the comfort of a cool, flat, fast marathon. They are there to face their fears and weaknesses and find out what strengths they have inside.

Please join me in sending a TON of Run It Fast vibes to these hearty runners who are giving it their all to reach the rock!

Once again, I probably won’t be adding as many updates but check back later just in case. :)  If you didn’t get a chance to read the live blog for any of the previous 8 days, you can check them out here:

Day 1      Day 2      Day 3     Day 4       Day 5      Day 6       Day 7       Day 8

And don’t forget, you can always:

-See what Joshua (@bayou) is up to on twitter or search the tag #VS500 on twitter.
-Check out The Last Annual Vol State Road Race page on Facebook.
-Check out the Vol State 2012 Map to see where the runners are (updated 2x per day w/ last location).
-Carl Laniak is adding photos to his album if you’d like to check those out as well:  Vol State 2012 Album
-Naresh is at the Vol State now and taking photos! Check it out: Naresh’s Vol State 2012 Album 

So far today:

Email from Shannon at 8:38 pm

#12 Shannon Burke


Carl can you please post to ulist (laz is taxing my abilities- finish the race and report my own results)

Email from Carl at 8:35 pm

 Re: Vol state update 17 – 8.5 days – still running

Correction; just heard from psyche, she’s at 297, not 300


Email from Stewart at 8:00 pm

8pm report

marvin is on sixteenth model road (can anyone tell me the actual way ninth model and sixteenth model roads got their names, authoritatively, accurately, without making up or repeating bullshit?) four miles from rte 41.

i think we are going to get a motel in manchester, then get a one am start. i think he is about ten miles off pace, holding steady there. i might start pushing gently tomorrow.

Update of runner status at 8:00 pm

 Vol state update 17 – 8.5 days – still running

As another mammoth thunderstorm rolls in to make sure the runners get a full measure of fun…..

With most of the miles covered, we ALL wish it was us….

12) Shannon Burke 311 (it feels real now, atop sand mountain)
13) Psyche Wimberly 300 (a little while ago, not sure if still moving)
14) Diane Taylor 272 (monteagle til early morn)
15) Marv Skagerberg 242
16) Oprah 241


Email from ultrarunningmom at 6:35 pm

#11 – Dusty Hardman

8 days, 11 hours, 4 minutes, 47 seconds

Email from UltraJohn at 2:15 pm

Re: vol-state update 16- 8 days (the heart of a warrior)

At 1:45pm Dusty Hardman was just leaving Kimball and had passed the interstate and started the short climb to South Pittsburg and the second crossing of the Tennessee River!

Shannon Burke had just reached the turn in Jasper to head to Kimball and looks to be on pace for a 8 to 9pm finish! Sure beats making a wrong turn at 124 mile and quiting like last year 😉

I’m heading back in the car in a few to find Psyche and see her progress I’m betting she is either off the mountain or nearly so!


Email from Stewart at 12:02 pm (Come on Marvin!)

on the road again

marvin is moving again, through shvl

it took him seven hours last night to make ten miles, so we bagged it at three am.

i woke up when gary called me and can only hope i made sense

the chemo headache kicked in, and i kinda just lay there until ten, when marvin started rustling

i opened the door to go out to the car and find something to eat and drink, which woke marv up

we drank the motel coffee (which is not coffee, and none of the ingerdiments are listed…it is ersatz, postum) ate a bagel and salami and swiss cheese sammich, and hit the road.

marvin redressed his foot, put on copious sunblock, and started trudging from the inbound shevil sign. he is rested, and ok i think. we will see what happens.

i am waiting at the kangaroo station, wher the gas is cheap and the ice is twice the normal price.

there were two dead horses along the way to svl yesterday. this is a terrible thing to do to a lavs runner. maybe they were walking horses and when they saw the lavs walkers, they figured out the logical consequences of this walking stuff, and just died.

we are on the road again


Update of runner status from Laz at 8:35 am

vol-state update 16- 8 days (the heart of a warrior)

five lonely figures move alongside the road.

the kings and queens have basked on the rock,
and left for home and work and all the trappings of “normal” life.

they will long for the simple days,
when a single peach could be a treasure,
and a drink of cold water the stuff of dreams.
when indoor plumbing stood alongside air conditioning,
as man’s signal achievement.
voice-mail boxes long filled,
e-mail accounts with pages of unread messages.
their 21st century lives have called them back from a simpler time.
when the heart of a warrior was the only thing.

fancy cars and prestigious jobs meant nothing.
big homes and social status afforded no mercy.
the stuff of life was water, food, and shelter…
and perseverance.
the skills of living were stark.
the skills that stood between those lonely figures beside the road,
and an ignominious ride to failure.
treating blisters, finding food and water,
sheltering in the fiercest storms and staying alive in blistering heat.
these were the measures of a man…

that and the heart of a warrior.
for there is no easy path from the ferry to the rock.
all must pay the price to walk thru the corn.

the vol state is a race with winners,
but no losers.
even those who ride off in the “seat of dishonor” have something.
they showed the courage to face the lion.
and as they sit at home and read about the few warriors remaining on the road,
they tell theirselves;
“that could have been me.”
most will ride the ferry again,
and find their way to the rock.

but for today, 5 lonely figures move slowly down the road.
their dream drawing ever closer,
the dream of the ultimate reward….

being able to stop.

11) dusty hardman 282- beyond tracy city. aiming to reach the rock tonight.
12) shannon burke 280- entering tracy city. aiming to reach the rock tonight.
13) psyche winberly 275- past monteagle. she is so hurt we are afraid to mention the rock just yet. but she fights on.
14) diane taylor 250- getting up from breakfast in manchester. tomorrow night calls.
15) marvin skagerberg 225- hammered by yet another storm, taking refuge in shelbyville.
he is back on the road as time grows short in his quest for “one more big thing.”

the odds are against him.

marvin has a lot of skins on his wall. he had proven himself as a warrior in times long past.
before the memories of this generation of ultramarathon warriors.
the years have stolen the speed from his legs. his vision has dimmed and his hearing faded.
but the heart of a lion remains, and he continues his relentless pursuit of “one more big thing.”
is there an old-timer who can keep from following his progress?
he may fail, but he will not lose.
the clock might catch him, but it will find him fighting to the end.

16) oprah 224- everyone keeps asking; “who is oprah?”
you know who oprah is.
she is the spectre that trails the pack at the vol state.
she is the “real” world. where celebrity is the most important thing,
and there are no lonely figures alongside the road, chasing dreams.


Posted in Running, Ultra Marathon, Vol StateComments (0)

Sulaiman Seriki VS500 Finish

Day 8: 2012 Last Annual Vol State Live Blog

One week of the Vol State 500K is done and what a week it was! Heat, rain, lightning, runners getting lost, running in circles…you name it, they probably suffered through it! But we’ve seen 9 finishers so far and all before the 7 day deadline! There are still runners out on the course fighting for every mile. Follow along and see how they do. They could really use some good thoughts going there way.

But…things are slowing down out there so I probably won’t be adding as many updates but check back later just in case. 🙂 If you didn’t get a chance to read the live blog for any of the previous 7 days, you can check them out here:

Day 1      Day 2      Day 3     Day 4       Day 5      Day 6       Day 7

And don’t forget, you can always:

-See what Joshua (@bayou) is up to on twitter or search the tag #VS500 on twitter.
-Check out The Last Annual Vol State Road Race page on Facebook.
-Check out the Vol State 2012 Map to see where the runners are (updated 2x per day w/ last location).
-Carl Laniak is adding photos to his album if you’d like to check those out as well:  Vol State 2012 Album
-Naresh is at the Vol State now and taking photos! Check it out: Naresh’s Vol State 2012 Album 

So far today:

Email from ultrarunningmom at 9:00 pm

 #10 – Sherry meador

7 days 13 hours 42 minutes 10 seconds

Posted by Joshua at 10:24 am

Email from Stewart (Marvin’s crew) at 9:51 am (Go Marvin! Run It Fast!)

marvin status

marvin is asleep in the breakdown lane….he says it is much better to have meditations in the breakdown lane than breakdowns in the meditation lane.
he is giving instructions to fifty people and his arms and legs are twitching.
perhaps he and his fifty friends are chasing rabbits.

i had a real good very smart girl friend once who claimed that there were only fifty real people in the world, and all the rest were androids. i will bet that the real ones were megarunners.

he is a few miles towards shelbyville, on 64.

he stopped a moment to enjoy the shade of his shade tree of despair from two years ago.

we now have a spare battery in the back seat.

when he starts to stagger today we will crash in shelbyville, and mount a night assault on manchester.

i believe he will be in surplus rather than deficit territory by day eight.

oprah is quite determined

but her entourage slows her down somewhat. and it takes energy to generate that aura, you know.

marvin wants to get moving again.

stay tuned for later developments!


Update of runner status at 8:05 am

vol state update 14 – 7 days, doing the impossible

the peloton made it to the rock last night
but not without more jostling and bumping

jay d had a big lead over john and richard
leaving out of kimball.
but a big lead when you’re addled by sleep deprivation and 300 miles
is not a safe thing.

when jay missed the turn onto castle rock road
he lost enough time that richard passed him.

then, at the penultimate turn on the course,
the one into the cornfield, he trekked right on by again.
and by the time he got back
john had passed him up too.

at the finish, when he finally arrived,
jay didn’t show any disappointment or surprise
he was just so happy to stop!

it is worthy of note,
that at the back of the pack
marv skagerberg is setting us up for something special
marv is fighting a mighty battle with the sands of time.

he exalted at the bench of despair last night,
and is building momentum.
he wants this finish as much as any great king of the past.

1-9) dan fox, joshua holmes, paul lefelhocz, juli aistars, sulaiman seriki
richard westbrook, john price, jay dobrowalksi, charlie taylor 314

10) sherry meador 292 (her check in mieage last night was a mistake, she was in monteagle)
11) psyche wimberly 265 (has picked up a crew and is rocking on)
12) dusty hardman 258 (slept in, but the happiest runner checking in)
13) shannon burke 253 (she’s got this)
14) diane taylor 235 (thru wartrace)
15) marvin skagerberg 206 (gaining on the time limit)
16) oprah 205 (like a vulture, waiting)

17) thomas mikkleson 250 RIP
18) jan silverman 218 RIP
19) rita barnes 185 RIP
20) sal coll 156 RIP
21) fred davis 125 RIP
22) erika matheny/adam venn 122 RIP
23) mike melton 121 RIP
24) abi meadows 100 RIP

Posted in Running, Ultra Marathon, Vol StateComments (0)

Run It Fast on Twitter

twitter button free