Leadville 100 Race Strategy

Train hard. Fight until the finish. Never give up. -Ellie Greenwood

Drop bags packed
I wasn't sure I was going to even say my plan out loud because that makes it real...that means you have something to live up to. But if you don't say it out loud does it even really count? When I got my LT100 coin I was not in great shape, barely sleeping, struggling to log miles and honestly not even sure if I'd be ready come August. But then I clicked register and it was a game changer. I still doubted I could be ready to big buckle but a 27 hr goal seemed reasonable. But I'm not reasonable. Never have been and probably never will be. On August 20th I'm not going after a 27 hr finish...I'm going for the big buckle (sub-25 hr) and really my A goal is a sub-24 hr finish. The big thing in my planning is regardless of planning to go for a big time goal I want to run the same goal I've had all year...keep it steady. I know even splitting Leadville is damn near impossible, but I'm going to try to be close which if I can I think will get me under 24 hr. Well that and if all goes well, no matter how hard you train 100 miles is a long way to go with nothing going wrong. 

Let no one lay a hand on your dreams -E.V. Lucas


AS Cumm Mileage Mileage Time - 24h Time of Day Split Time-25h  Split Time-27h Split
MQ 13.5 13.5 2:10 6:10A 2:10 2:15 2:15 2:15 2:15
OB 24.5 11 4:10 8:10A 2:00 4:15 2:00 4:25 2:10
PL 28.5 4 5:05 9:05A 0:55 5:15 1:00 5:40 1:15
HP 31 2.5 5:35 9:35A 0:30 5:45 0:30 6:20 0:40
TL 39.5 8.5 7:15 11:15A 1:40 7:25 1:40 8:05 1:45
45.5 5 9:25 1:25P 2:10 9:45 2:20 10:35 2:30
W 50 5.5 10:40 2:40P 1:15 11:05 1:20 12:00 1:25
H 55.5 5.5 12:55 4:55P 2:15 13:25 2:20 14:30 2:30
TL 60.5 5 14:10 6:10P 1:15 14:50 1:25 15:55 1:25
HP 69 8.5 16:10 8:10P 2:00 16:50 2:00 18:00 2:05
PL 71.5 2.5 16:55 8:55P 0:45 17:35 0:45 19:00 1:00
OB 75.5 4 17:55 9:55P 1:00 18:45 1:10 20:15 1:15
MQ 86.5 11 20:40 12:40A 2:45 21:40 2:55 23:25 3:10
F 100 13.5 23:40:00 3:40A 3:00 24:45:00 3:05 26:55:00 3:30

Shoes: Pearl Izumi Trail M2s
Shorts: Pearl Izumi split fly shorts
Socks: Pearl Izumi infinity socks
Hydration pack: Ultimate Direction Ultravesta
Handheld: UltrAspire
Watch: Suunto Peak
Pump: Specta 9, I purposely ordered this one because the slim motor fits in my hydration pack so I can pump and run
Headlamp: Black Diamond 
Night clothes: Pearl Izumi Infinity wind blocker hoody and softshell pants

Maltodextrin powder
Nuun electrolytes
Honey Stinger grapefruit chews
Honey Stinger caramel waffles

Notes to myself with what I need and what my mantra is for each section...

Start to MayQueen:
My plan is to come in a bit faster than I have in previous years, but still keep that even pace. I don't want to even think about breathing hard. Easy, easy, easy! Stick 

MayQueen to Twin Lakes:
Really my plan all the way to Twin is the same, keep the pace easy and slow. I may see crew at Treeline, but basically I'm on my own in this section which is fine. I shouldn't need much other than refilling calories and to keep moving. Steady, steady, steady. No need to blow up here. Stick to the plan and don't get caught up in anyone else's race.

Twin Lakes to Winfield:
The climb up Hope...it'll be brutal...I know that much. My game plan is NO stops, no stopping, standing or waiting, every second there will be forward movement. I'm climbing stronger than I was in 2013, although I'm still not a strong climber. Its still the same mantra here, keep it steady. That's the name of the game. If I can have a steady, consistent climb I'll be in good shape. The downhill I have no plans to hammer, but looking back my splits were shockingly slow for the downhill. I really want that to be a big area of improvement. I know I walked a lot of the rolling section along the CT into Winfield and I plan to run most of that this year. At Winfield I'll pick up Sandra, but other than that this is a quick turn-around. I want to get back up and over that mountain fast. 

Winfield to Twin:
Almost the same strategy as outbound, with the addition of really hoping not to puke. Or at least puke a minimal amount of times...especially because its really hard to hike and puke and I'm determined not to stop at all on the climb. 

Twin Lakes to Outward Bound: 
The name of the game is to run! The climb out of Twin is a good one up to Elbert so I plan to hike that strong and hopefully in the daylight. That could be a big game changer. It was dark last time I did this climb so I'm hoping the daylight gives me an extra boost. But then its a rolling down to Outward Bound and last time I really lost motivation to run here. Again hoping the light helps, but also I have it in my head that I'm running this section. Sure my legs will be sore by this point, but as long as its just sore you might as well keep running. 

Outward Bound to finish:
I'll switch out Sandra for Dan for the last section. For the climb up powerlines I just keep telling myself it will end. I remember almost crying when I finally came out on top last time. This year I'm hoping to hike it significantly stronger. Its just a count down in my head. As long as I keep moving forward it will only take 1.5 hr or so...its only about 3 miles and it will end. Once I get to the top that's when its game on and the race starts. I have no idea if there will even be any women to catch or not, but I'm not even going to think about it until the top of powerlines. By no means do I expect to be trying to catch a podium spot, but I'd like to see if I can have a strong finish and find another gear coming around the lake. My money is on Maggie Walsh for the win and I expect her to be finished well before I get to MayQueen. She's been kicking my butt all year and is really running strong. Then its an all out downhill to MayQueen and a book around the lake. I do not want that section to drag out...I want to get it over with and hopefully before it gets to cold. I have thought about this section in my head every day for the last 6 months. I know it seems silly to think about this more than Hope, but I know I will get up Hope. I need to knock out this lake section running. Not shuffling, not walking, not crying and whining, but running. So yes, this is the section I think about every lap at FJ, every treadmill run, laying in bed drifting off to sleep. I will be running and I will have a smile on my face. 

Behind every strong independent woman lies a broken little girl who had to learn how to get back up -unknown

Run Rabbit may have knocked me down last year, but I got back up, brushed off my knees and I'm more ready than every to go after it again. I learned a lot last year, I've trained hard and hopefully it all comes together on race day. 100s are different than other races, there is so much that is outside of our control. All I can do is run my plan, eat, and keep my head on straight...and come hell or high water I will be on that red carpet back in Leadville! See you all there!


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