Most 19 year olds are more concerned with finding people to buy beer for them than finding the next ultra to run. On this edition of Elevation Trail, Gary talks with Patrick Caron, a New England kid who would rather be on the trails than go to a party. We’ll find out why he has chosen to run every day, race every weekend, why he didn’t have a high school graduation party, and how sustainable is his race schedule. We’ll also talk about his 14:51 effort at the Ghost Train 100 mile ultra, his second place at the Eastern States 100, why Ian Sharman hasn’t talked to him, and the dangers of running with bacon.
What a pleasure having Mike Aish back on the Elevation Trail Show! One of our favorite
guests. We dive into his gritty Leadville 100 mile run, stunning 100 mile mountain bike race, thoughts on doping, and his future, which looks like it will include Gary and I managing Mike’s entry into the Worlds Masters Games in New Zealand next year, representing the elite Elevation Trail Team.
Hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
Thanks for joining us today on Elevation Trail. We talk about the Olympics, mountain biking, Leadman/Leadville races, interview with “The Champ” oh, and handguns.
After a six month vacation from producing a show, Gary and Tim return to Elevation Trail with an update on things and delve a bit into what motivates people to do or not do activities in their lives. Really, it’s just another conversation about life in general.
Well, both Gary and I are wrapped up next week, so we wanted to squeeze in a show this week. Jamil couldn’t make it today but, alas, our lives are darn interesting, too. Well, Gary’s is, anyway.
Please consider ordering a new Elevation Trail shirt. Just click on the link on the right hand side of our site.
Thanks for listening.
Music by LCW. Song “Take Back”
Ian Sharman joins Elevation Trail for a wide ranging, no punches pulled conversation. Gary (in his slutty ways) is now the number 1 fan of Ian. You won’t want to miss that. We talk Skyrunning, coaching, smart training, hill running, race strategy, living in the USA, Elvis, new running gadgets, his records, and a lot more. Hope you enjoy it.
Music by LCW. Song “Take Back”
Why limit the excitement and enjoyment to the activity of running the race? Finding a way to the start line can be part of the thrill and danger of ultrarunning.
People are getting soft. Don’t believe me? Look how much you Ooo and Aah at video and pics of normal little runs [hikes] up mountains by skinny, dirty runners with no jobs or homes, sleeping in the back of a 1978 Vega. You drool over these images in your grey cubicle, nearly sweating through your Dockers chinos, and then burn the mental image into your brain, replacing the main character with yourself, as you bound up the 100 ft mound in the neighborhood park (that used to be a garbage dump). Jumping up and down like Rocky among the scent of old oil drums buried deep beneath your dancing sneakers.
Sad. You could be sharing the same giardia filled streams with any of these guys but quickly justify your grassy toxic dump GPS’d hill run with the fact that you actually have a life and, thus, some semblance of responsibility. But I digress.
Gain back some of that adventurous youthful ability in the travels and accommodations to your next race. Fly by the seat of your khakis and wing that shit.
You’ll want to keep your “plans” to yourself or at least somewhat vague. I mean, no reason to bother your family with silly details like driving 110 mph through the desert half asleep with one index finger on the wheel or spending the night behind a gas station in East Los Angeles.
Transportation. In the true spirit of adventure, leave that 7-year financed SUV in the garage and find some freestyle mode of transportation. If you don’t have any friends dumb enough to be involved with ultrarunning and can’t sucker anyone into believing this will be “just like a vacation” to drive you to the race, then post some carpooling posts on local running club boards or on Facebook. Make sure to be clear about the “NEED RIDE” detail. Otherwise, you’ll end up with two idiots meeting at a coffee shop with all their luggage and gear and neither will have a car, thinking the other was supposed to drive. Don’t laugh, I’ve seen it.
Craigslist is an option too. They have this “ride share” section (at least all the cool dirtbagging-type towns do, anyway). You’re either going to be riding with a business sales guy chugging pepto bismol and listening to conservative talk radio loudly, or you’ll be in the back of a windowless van that smells like urine and has what appears to be dried blood on the ceiling. If you make it to the race with all your orifices intact, then anywhere you end up sleeping won’t seem nearly as bad.
Accommodations. Race Directors will often write on the race website IN BOLD AND ALL CAPS (AND SOMETIMES DIFFERENT COLORS) that you can’t camp here or park there, blah, blah. It’s dark at night and no one will see you. Besides, the parks’ budget is smaller than an Arkansas teenager’s weekly allowance, so there’s like one park ranger covering 5 million square miles of land and the chances he’ll catch you (or even be in the same area code) are nil.
Once, when I travelled to a certain race in Pennsylvania, I found an open (or, rather, unlocked) window in a ski hut cabin, so I crawled in and spent the night there before the race. Some might call this breaking and entering. I didn’t break shit. I call it a warm sofa. Oddly enough, that experience ended up as an article on minimalism in Trail Runner Magazine (last time I talk about my travel experiences on a run with an Editor).
Anton slept on a park’s bathroom floor the night before a race a few years ago. That’s roughing it. I’d rather sleep naked on an open boulder field at 13,000 ft in January than be snuggling up with moldy feces. Geoff Roes had the “roughing it” when traveling to races down to a science. He’s got all the camping gear shit and he’s a cook that can turn Ramen Noodles into spaghetti con le vongole (I italicized it to make it look fancier), so he’s living it up in the woods while the rest of you soft, 300 series BMW driving, $200 multi-colored hydration vest wearing yuppies are trying to figure out how to open that child-sized piece of soap in your hotel bathroom.
If you live to make it to the start of the event, it’ll seem like one of the easiest races you’ve ever run after the hell you put yourself through to get there.