Finally got picked!

I’d never won a run lottery.

I am a five-time loser at the Western States 100 and missed out of last year’s pick for the Cascade Crest 100, but my luck has changed. I got into this year’s Angeles Crest 100 (AC100) run. Now comes the easy parts: training for it and running it.

Getting older means you’re not sure how many more 100 milers the old body can take. What I did is created a bucket list of 100 milers I want to run. All of the original five are on there: Leadville 100, Old Dominion 100, Western States 100, Wasatch 100, and the AC100. The first two are checked off and third should be once I get past that race’s lottery.

As races go, the AC100 has about 4,000 feet more climbing than Leadville and 9,000 feet of additional descent all at a lower elevation.

The kicker is the AC100 race can be hot and I don’t have a great history with heat, but that may have changed. I’ve not vomited during my last three 100 milers. Granted they only got into the 80Fs, it is still promising. What is my secret?

I’ve been trying to figure out why my stomach shuts down in these races . I think what happens is I’m not eating enough real food containing fats and protein. As a result, my stomach all but stops processing what I put into it. My metabolism switches over to burning fat (yeah!) but that generates excess heat (boo!). My body diverts blood from my stomach and other organs to cool itself which further slows digestion.

For my past three races I’ve eaten real food, typically a portion of a grilled cheese or PB&J at every aid station and I’ve been fine. I think my fear of getting nauseous in the past led me to avoid doing this and relying more on sugary gels, which only made matters worst.

My fingers are still crossed that this issue has been solved, but we’ll really know when the afternoon heat picks up along the mountainous trails of the Angeles National Forest this August.

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