Skip to main content

Posts

The Tucson High Five

Overview and Inception

On March 23rd, my dear friend Kent Warlick and I completed the Tucson High Five. What is the Tucson High Five? It is an original endurance challenge to summit the 5 tallest peaks in the mountain ranges surrounding Tucson: Mt. Wrightson, Mt Lemmon, Mica Mountain, Rincon Peak, and Wasson Peak. The challenge can be done in many iterations or formats. It is our hope that others will be interested in taking on the challenge. The High Five can be done as a fastpack, a multiple day hike, or weekend picnic in the mountains.
The story of the Tucson High Five begins with two close friends who dream big. The idea originated from Kent who I asked to share some details about where he got the idea for the five summit challenge. Here is what he shared.
During Thanksgiving last year, my partner in climb from Colorado, Daniel Covelli, and I made a trip to Southern California to hike one of the hardest day hikes in America.San Jacinto (San Jack), also known as Cactus to Clouds, f…

Training the Mind and the Body will Follow

The Mental Frame
How we mentally frame a given route we run or segment of a route we run or course profile can be the difference between creating for ourselves a positive experience or a negative experience. There are so many training runs where I have thought to myself “Uggh, I hate this segment” and low and behold I end up hating it and it has deleterious effects on both my performance and my experience. Over the years I’ve been ultra-running this experience has been crippling at times. In the past year or so, I have decided to take to task framing positive experiences more effectively and remapping in the mind negative experiences.
In ultra-running (and life) we are faced with situations and experiences that appear and feel abysmal. It is true that there are and were negative things about the situation and experience. However, most often in hindsight we find that being resilient and reflective provides the opportunity for good things that were previously unrevealed.
The brain is l…

Acceptance and Ultra Running

Deep within the often unexplored caverns of the spirit and mind there exists a push and pull that drives internal conflict, strife, struggle, constitution, passion, and perseverance. In the week and days that have passed since the Mogollon Monster 100 Mile Endurance Run, I have sought to better understand the experience and how it relates to my relationship with running and people and other things. Since this is a blog mainly about ultra running and finding peace, it seems like a good venue to explore some of these ideas.
The Exploration
When an explorer sets off to experience and investigate a new frontier, the other side of the ocean or an island known to exist but has yet to be discovered, there exists and exciting and great unknown and uncertainty. Will the explorer make it and survive the journey, will the ship survive the tumultuous tides of the sea, will the new frontier be hostile, will the new found cave have a buried treasure or other interesting findings? These uncertaintie…

Mogollon Monster 100

If life were like the old computer game the Oregon Trail, then I probably would have died out there while trying to navigate the mountains and trails of the Mogollon Rim. Yet, life is not like a computer game nor is it like a box of chocolates. At least with the box chocolates you know you're going to get chocolate. To me, life is like running 100 miles on a hard adventurous  mountain course. I suppose, since I started this blog today,  this is my first official unofficial race report. 
The Race
I woke up Saturday morning knowing I had put in all the work I could in my training, was coming off a second place finish at the Vertigo 52k.  Despite sorting through some remnants of the past, I was focused and prepared. While loading up the car that morning I remember thinking about this annoying bug bite on my left calf and as I said to myself, this thing is annoying, I also thought if that's my biggest problem today I am good. 
The energy before the race was electric, the weather w…