This was quite the revelation, and set me on a path that I continue to follow a decade later — seeking out endurance races as a way to focus my emotions, expand my perceptions, find flow, and experience life at an intensity that never ceases to amaze me. Although this is all possible in non-race adventures, I appreciate organized races for their community and support, and also because perimeters force me to think and act outside my own boxes. Ultimately my goal with racing is to see how far I can go. Unless something about my life changes substantially, I imagine I'll continue to participate in races for years to come.
For a while now I've wanted to archive all the race reports scattered throughout this blog. Long-time reader Slo Joe planted the idea to list all of my races (with links to reports) on one page. I do love a good "quantified self" project. So I compiled a list and created a race page in header bar. The numbers are only interesting to me, but it was fun to quantify a decade of racing experiences. A few things I learned:
• I've participated in 80 races since February 2006 — 22 bicycle races, 57 foot races, and one triathlon.
• The most races I participated in one year was 20 in 2012 — three bicycle races and 17 foot races.
• Before I even considered myself a runner (2006-2009), I participated in five foot races and one triathlon.
• My longest race was the 2009 Tour Divide — 2,745 miles — and my shortest was the 2008 Spring Tide Scramble — 4 miles.
• The fastest time I ever posted in a bicycle race was 11:35 in the 2014 White Mountains 100; I never spent fewer than 11.5 hours racing a bicycle.
• I've participated in seven 24-hour mountain bike races.
• I've finished 43 ultramarathons (foot races 50 kilometers or longer)
• The number of multi-day bikepacking races I've finished is just four (in my defense, these are always the most time-consuming endeavors.)
• I've DNF'd eight races — three bike and five foot races. The reasons I listed were "timed out" (4), "frostbite" (1), "achilles pain and lost heart" (1), "knee injury" (1), "pneumonia" (1).
• I hold the course record in one race, the Berry Creek Falls 50K in Big Basin State Park. I finished in seven hours and 50 minutes, but it was the only year the 50K distance was offered at this race, and I was the only woman. I know, I know. The race director for Coastal Trail Runs still reminds me this is an official course record nearly every time he sees me.
• Because I aim to find out "how far can I go?" and never took the traditional path of training for speed while slowly increasing distance, my personal records for traditional distances are mostly pretty humorous:
5K: 31:52(!!) (This was my 5K time during the 2006 Homer Sea to Ski Triathlon, when I was definitely not a runner. Of course I log faster 5K segments nearly every time I go for a run, but this is my only official 5K race.)
Half Marathon: 2:06 (Insert frowny face here. Someday I will sign up for another half marathon so I can finish one under two hours. But probably not anytime soon.)
Marathon: 6:58 (2012 Diablo Marathon, hella hard trail run, 8,000 feet of climbing, I got lost and ran closer to 29 miles, but it's still the only marathon I've run.)
50K: 5:36 (2014 Crystal Springs 50K — my favorite local race — well, this or the Ohlone 50K. Another fun fact: Between Crystal Springs and the Woodside Ramble, I've run nine 50-kilometer races on this particular course.)
50M: 10:50 (2013 Quicksilver 50)
100K: 19:53 (2013 Homer Epic, winter race with sled.)
100M: 29:53 (2015 White Mountains 100, winter race with pack.)
• My race list may seem obsessively lengthy, but it pales in comparison to Beat's.
The link to my Race Page is here. Included are links to 80 occasionally multi-part race reports, which must be up to the 10-million-word range by now. Fun airplane reading.