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I went from being obese to being slightly less obese. Maybe that is not the best way to describe my journey. Yes, that sounds better. How did I do it? Why would I want to? When did all of thi I underwent a great transformation in four short years. When did all of this occur? What were the methods used therein? Where are the fun and fact-filled tips and Who can benefit from them? The answers are to be found inside, if you chance to look for them.

Sorry for yelling. Many, if not all of the little nagging errors have been corrected, and now I can finally sleep at night, untroubled by proofreading woes. Ah, sweet closure, how I do love thee. Get A Copy. Paperback , pages. More Details Friend Reviews. To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. To ask other readers questions about A Clydesdale's Tale , please sign up. Lists with This Book. This book is not yet featured on Listopia.

My runner had fallen off pace and was closer to the back of the pack at this point. When I arrived to Fish Hatchery in the early morning hours of Sunday, it literally felt like a scene from Apocalypse now. There seemed to be no one really having any control of the aid station. Yes, the runners were chipped but they were coming and going without any real notice or checking in or out.

The entire aid station was littered with trash. Garbage cans had long since overflowed and folks simply were putting garbage on the ground. It was a very bizarre scene. There are those who would profess that they had no or few problems with the race 7.

Furthermore, there is a general sentiment that people want the race to go well. In this way, the race has the feel of a local business, the community store that while privately owned still feels like it is part of the fabric of all who live there. For many, it feels like the local store has been bought out by a chain. Stan Jensen, who runs the website runs. Thus, you cannot find any mention or reference to the Leadville on his site. This was determined through surveying participants, and their spending habits associated with the various races and training activities that take place in Leadville.

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It also added in additional monies earned by local employees during race activities. Without getting into the specifics of how much is made, and how accurate these numbers are, it is clear from anyone who has been to Leadville that these events do bring in money to the community. If that is the goal, then that is accomplished, and likely will continue to be accomplished as more ultrarunners and mountain bikers get into these sports.

However, if the goal is to maintain the spirit of these events, and the sports they represent, then there is a growing concern of whether it is possible in this model of race-for-profit and corporate sponsorship.

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Finally, as more sponsorship and attention is given to ultrarunning, there is the concern of whether more and more races will go the way of Leadville, and whether the price of popularity is worth the cost of culture. In Ancient Greece, the concept of agon related to contest, competition, struggle and challenge, especially pertaining to the development of the Olympic Games.

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It not only relates to an external struggle against an opponent, but an inward struggle of the soul. Within struggle there is hope that through perseverance, that by enduring external and internal challenges, one will come through transformed with a renewed sense of self and a removal of limitations. Endurance is the thing, and learning to endure is the skill needed to be acquired.

Likewise the quote above taken from Luke was uttered as a foretelling of the persecution that the Apostles would encounter through their following of Jesus, and that by enduring that persecution they would achieve an eternal life. Within ultra comes a kind of purity of existence in that moment, where all of the things that can plague us every day are stripped away and focus is turned toward just keeping moving forward. In recalling her participation in the Iditarod mountain bike race, Jill Homer Ch.

Not the truth shaped by human knowledge, but the Truth: harsh, unwritten and startingly real. To run is to engage in one of the simplest human activities. Shortly after crawling and walking comes running. More research is examining how human beings evolved as long-distance runners.

Rather it is a biological capacity that is now largely a cultural phenomenon. What was primal has become popular, and what is popular will eventually become marketed. It is in this final step that ultrarunning is finding itself today, as the point between what it has been and is becoming.

As sponsors invest more and more money into athletes and races, they will expect those athletes and races to produce more and more money. The question still remains whether this is something that ultrarunners want to see happen. More specifically, we could ask if there are now different parts of the ultrarunning community that want different outcomes, and in the process is a bifurcation of ultrarunning beginning.

The Clydesdale, Workhorse of the World by Mary Bromilow | | Booktopia

At the same time, this concern might be much ado about nothing. For instance, a new race called the Twin States 50m has just emerged, for which there is no entry fee, no aid stations, and registration involves basically an RSVP to the race director. Things in my pantry include canned rabbit, mushrooms, tomato sauce, creamed corn or any variety of things 8.

The question could be asked, then, why the fuss?


Why should there be concern over the growth of the sport in one direction when it seems likely that it can retain its roots? Part of this may lie in those fearful that ultra is becoming the thing that it originally rejected. Is it possible to find yourself in the midst of adversity when much is done to ensure your success? If you are not allowed to find your limits, how can you go past them? Ultrarunners might look toward mountain biking, which went from a fringe outsider oriented activity in the woods, and turned into looped courses for better viewing, televising, marketing, and eventually inclusion in the Olympics.

Making ultra more accessible is not only a concern about field sizes, but also removing the essence of what makes it important as a way to explore personal limits or struggle and then find what one is capable of.


The Barkley Marathons is one of the hardest ultramarathons in the world. Competitors must finish the mile event the course is likely longer than this in 60 hours. Held in various versions since , the miler course 5 loops came into being in Since that time, only 14 people have successfully completed the course before the cutoff. All the other big races are set up for you to succeed. There are no aid stations or marked trail.

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  • Only around 40 people can participate a year due to park rules. While undoubtedly people would like to finish, and there are the very few that do, finishing is not always the point. The journey does not begin at the starting line, but in the course of training, immersing oneself in the day-to-day struggle to even approach the starting line with a sense of preparedness. Or, as ultrarunning great Scott Jurek Ch. I know all that now.

    Scott Kummer: An Unlikely Ultrarunner

    I sensed it then. It often is in struggle that people can unite for a common purpose, allowing difference to be shed for a shared goal and experience. As was shown in the survey results, community and identity are important elements of the ultrarunning culture. The concern now is whether the growth and increased commercialization of the sport possess a threat to the spirit of the trail, and the ethos that became established in ultra. The goal of this paper was to provide a deeper understanding on ultramarathoning participation, identity, culture and growth. As ultrarunning continues to grow in terms of race size and market share, more will be needed to be done to examine whether it can achieve a model of economic, environmental, and cultural sustainability.

    UltraTails 2002 Vermont 100 Mile Endurance Run

    There is much to be written on ultramarathon, and more to be explored. It is in many ways a fundamentally simple activity involving nothing more than typically a trail and a desire to see how far one can go. It would seem that ultimately people want to see that simplicity retained. The question then becomes whether simplicity can be achieved with popularity and profitability. That question has yet to be decided in the world of ultramarathoning. As it unfolds, it will provide an interesting avenue to explore how cultural change and resistance function in a world where the certainty of the finish line is almost always in question and the experience of the moment all that can be guaranteed.

    Agger, Ben. New York, NY. Bien, Rod. Leadville loses its soul. August 21 st. Retrieved November 14, Burgunder, R.