In 68 days I'll be running the Beast of Burden Winter 100.
After spending the past four months training for the Grindstone 100, which was cancelled due to the government shutdown, my partner Jes and I were feeling ultra'd out. We'd spent the better part of four months living in a small tent at Bradbury Mountain so that I could train. We talked and planned and mapped out Grindstone strategy endlessly. And,we sacrificed time with one another to invest in a goal that was deeply personal to me. I could not be more grateful for the love and support of this amazing lady.
When Grindstone was cancelled I did some soul searching. I went searching for the soul of a sport that I fell in love with at a no-fee fat ass in New Jersey, and which is now filled with races that are too expensive or too exclusive to get into. I searched myself to find the reason that these races and runs are so important to me. And I searched the depths of the interwebs for a race that could inspire me and excite me like Grindstone had. What I found was the Beast of Burden. It was the website that I couldn't stay away from. The race reports that I read and re-read. And the race that I did not (and do not) know if I can complete.
From the race website:
The Beast of Burden 100 & 50 Mile Ultra Marathon series is not a race at all. Sure, there's a timing clock, a start/finish line, and some truly awe-inspiring world-class runners who will travel from the far corners of the globe to toe that line and race that clock on one of the flattest, fastest and most runner-friendly surfaces on the earth in hopes of setting new world records. But, that's just a centerpiece for what really makes the B.o.B. special. This event is our semi-annual family reunion for ultra runners as unique as yourself.
Also from the race website:
Yeah....we know. You can run 100 miles.You can run it through the hills of the highest mountains and through the heat of the sun in the desert valleys, but can you run it in the heart of winter? Through inches or feet of snow? Are you ready to unleash the beast inside of you and run 100 miles on the frigid, historic Erie Canal Towpath? Ladies and Gentlemen, throw away your razors for the new year. This winter, you're going to need all the insulation you can muster!
I consulted with Jes and we agreed to take on the BoB. I feel like we are a team in the truest sense of the word, and hope that I can return her endless support as we continue to chase down dreams and slay dragons together.
I attribute my success at the Virgil Crest 100 largely to having my nutrition dialed in. I fueled my training with healthy, local food and how good I felt during this period leading up to the race was one of the inspirations for my book, Paleo in Maine.
My goal is to train for the Beast of Burden exclusively on local food from many of the farms and distributors featured in the book, and many of them have offered to supply us with some extra meat and veggies to support that effort. Feeding a hungry ultra-runner is a monumental task at times, and their support is endlessly appreciated.
I have also reached out to several local outfitters to see whether they could contribute some winter running gear to aid in my preparation for the Beast. This training cycle is going to take some serious cold weather apparel, and every little bit of support allows us to reach our big goals on a not so big budget.
I reached out because I needed support to do this, and the response was just amazing. If I am successful at the Beast of Burden this January, it will be because of the incredible team of people who have helped me to reach the finish line.
My race at the Beast of Burden Winter 100 will serve as a benefit for the adaptive services program at the Casco Bay YMCA, and will take place on January 18th in Lockport, NY.
Gearing up, and getting ready to run.