The Eastern States 100 came and went and I didn’t finish. I dropped at 55 miles. My body was prepared. My mind was not. I made all of the mental mistakes you can make during an ultra race. I allowed self-doubt to stake its claim. I counted the miles until the end of the race. I counted the hours to finish those miles. I let my anxiety and obsessive tendencies sabotage my day (and night). I complained, a little.
I’ve taken a preliminary inventory of my errors and have thought seriously about what I need to do to complete that race.
Most importantly, I need to prepare my mind. The 100 mile distance demands mental preparation well beyond a 50 mile or 100 kilometer race but I largely neglected it. Like many, I thought simply going out on long runs was be sufficient. For some, maybe it is, but not for me. I understand and respect that now.
I’ve be mainly taking a rest from running since Eastern States, going out once or twice a week. Autumn running is my favorite so I’ll pick it back up as the weather chills. Until then, I’m hitting the books, not the trails to prepare for my next 100 mile attempt.