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6 Tips for Your First Trail Run

Thinking about taking on the Peak Ultra?  This year ultra runner, coach and author of “The Ultra Mindset” Travis Macy will be joining us.  We have some amazing athletes this year taking on distances from 30 to 200 miles, but if your new to the sport you can join the fun with our 15 mile run.  This is an amazing opportunity to get a taste for the world of Ultra Running and Trail Running.  Join us Friday evening for the free Q&A with Travis and win one of the copies of his book we’ll be giving away at the race!

The Peak Ultra takes place on the beautiful Green Mountain Trails in Pittsfield, Vermont and in the Green Mountain National Forest.  This race is all about testing yourself and your limits.  No matter if you are a seasoned pro or new to ultra running, I think you’ll find Travis’ video helpful.

learn more about the Peak Ultra.

How Persistence at the Peak Ultra changed Nick Bautista Forever

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500 miles, 9 days.

I first attempted the Peak Races 500 mile back in 2013. I made it 460 miles before my body could not move forward any longer.
I returned in 2014 to finish what I had began. Stepping foot back onto that mountain was like visiting an old friend with whom I had an intimate and complicated relationship with. A plethora of emotions flooded me.
The previous year, the mountain taught me how to suffer. The following year, I planned on reaching that level of suffering once again, but to take it even further. To break my body and my mind in order to become something, someone new.
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It started the same; rain, mud, cold nights. Soul crushing climbs. Quad bashing descents just around the corner. I could see the mountain change. I ran. And I ran harder and faster. I could not let myself take a break or rest or power hike while on the mountain. I could rest when it was time to sleep.
After a while, I no longer became a runner in a race, on a treacherous course. I became part of the mountain; the rocks, the trees, the animals. It assimilated me, and it was in my bones. I was a speck of dirt on this giant. The repetitive circling became a meditation. Each step forward I was stripped of the petty things in life. I was breaking myself, and becoming aware of another self. Yet I was nothing.
I was silent on my last loop. I finished in 9 days, in the dark, how I wanted it. Quiet and calm. I was scared to finish, though. What was I going to do when I finally stopped? I thought about continuing on regardless of reaching 500 miles…
The very first finisher back in 2012, my dear friend Willy Syndram, said to me, “This will change you forever.” The person who stepped off of that mountain was not the same as the one who got there 9 days previously. There are no words that can explain, only tears and a heaviness in my heart. That mountain is sacred to me. And I will return…
Nick Bautista
NB Endurance Coaching and Personal Training, LLC
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Learn More about running 15, 30, 50, 100, 200 or 500 miles at the Peak Ultra.

 

 

Author, Coach and Ultra Runner Travis Macy at the 2015 Peak Ultra

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Author and coach Travis Macy will be running in the Peak Ultra 50 this year. He will be giving a free talk to help racers get their heads ready for the 2015 Ultra, whatever distance they run.  His talk will include a quick overview of nutrition, hydration, gear, pacing, and mindset for Peak Ultra; he’ll then open up to questions about this event, competing around the world, his new book, and anything else that’s on your mind!

Travis Macy is a speaker, author, coach, and professional endurance athlete. He is the author of The Ultra Mindset: An Endurance Champion’s 8 Core Principles for Success in Business, Sports, and Life, and he holds the record for Leadman, an epic endurance event consisting of a trail running marathon, 50-mile mountain bike race, Leadville 100 Mountain Bike Race, 10k road run, and Leadville 100 Run, all above 10,200′ in the Rocky Mountains. Travis lives with his wife and two young children in the mountains around Evergreen, Colorado.

Learn more about running the Peak Ultra with 15 mile to 500 mile options.

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500 miles in 9 days – Kale “Cleetus” Poland

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Only 4 racers have completed the 500 mile distance at the Peak Ultra.  One of them is Kale  “Cleetus” Poland who finished in 9 days. Here are his memories of the event.

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After I take the turn from VT-107 to 100, I make a conscious effort to not put the pedal to the floor for the final 13 miles on the way to Pittsfield.
Don’t get me wrong- the small, charming mountains rising up from the river along that road are worthy of gawking at length… but the anticipation of what I am headed to far exceeds my willingness to rubberneck.

The mystique surrounding the trails at Peak is well-known amongst those who make the annual pilgrimage there.
There is an energy within that forest that cannot be denied. I’d been there to witness it multiple times within the past 5 years, but hadn’t truly felt the extent of it on my own until last year, at the Peak 500.

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We began on a Thursday afternoon in late May.
Incessant rain dominated our first few days on the trail. We were muddy, constantly wet, and tired. The forest seemed dark and imposing- perhaps compounded by the daunting task that lay ahead.
I believe the sun finally made an appearance on day 3. New England forests in general are very dynamic during this time of year, as everything begins to come back to life after a long winter. This was especially so here on Joe’s Mountain. The flora changed from deep green to bright and vibrant…growing right before our eyes. The grass and ferns, not much taller than ankle-height at the beginning, grew to knee height. Over the final few days, I became almost attached to certain parts of the trail that I’d run or walked by over 40 times, having literally watched them grow over a week and half. A haunting forest suddenly became inviting, even during the final night when things were at their toughest.

A few days after finishing, I chatted with fellow finisher Nick Bautista. We both expressed feelings of difficulty in leaving the trail and assimilating back to the “real” world. After knowing the whereabouts and condition of seemingly every root, rock, and plant, it is very hard to not know how the trail is doing. I know how silly this probably sounds, but when the only thing you have with you are your thoughts, suffering, and nature around you, the attachment becomes very real.

Peak Races are polarizing, but in a good way. You will have some of your worst moments on these trails.  There is a good chance you will end up at rock bottom, and you just may stay there for a long, long while….but never forever. The collective energy of this place and the people around it will raise you up.
You will learn, adapt, and then have some of your best moments here- and while those good and bad moments may not last forever, the memories will.
And those memories will change you.

Kale  “Cleetus” PolandPeak_Ultra_Kale1

Find out more about the Peak Ultra, register now for distances from 500 to 15.