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In the Copper Canyons of Mexico there is a tribe of Native Americans called the Tarahumara Indians who are renown for their athletic abilities, especially in long distance running.

This hidden tribe of superathletes have developed a tradition of long distance running up to 200 miles (320km) in one session. There are reports of Tarahumara runners who ran 696km in one stretch.

In 1993, the Leadville Trail 100 ultramarathon organisers brought in five Tarahumara runners to compete with the world’s best endurance athletes. The winner was 52 year old Tarahumaran named Victoriano. He beat the first non-Tarahumaran finisher by a full hour.

Experts agree that the human body is a machine built to run, and that this amazing super tribe represents the hunter gatherer instinct in us.

Read more about the Tarahumara Indians here.

All smiles a few weeks ago at the Skyline 50k.

I’m blessed and lucky to be able to do this- just had my first 100-mile week in training (103 to be exact) with 44 of those miles in the Sierras and another 28 in the Marin headlands and the remainder either in the Redwoods or on the roads of Oakland.

So very lucky to recover so fast between hard efforts and resist injury. I love this sport so much.

Thank you everybody.

Hi guys! Me and my colleagues are doing a 4 man relay for an 85km ultramarathon this July 5 in Pililia, Rizal. It aims to raise fund for Baby Smile, an 11 month old kid who was diagnose with Congenital Heart Defect - Patent Ductus Arteriosus large with Cleft Lip. Please PM me for any monetary donations you would like to share. Cheers. Patrick Dacanay #run #running #runmania #ultramarathon #pinoyfitness #takboph #igrunnersph

FINISHED! On Saturday, October 12, 2013, at six o’clock in the morning, I set off with a group of 27 runners, cutting a path around Canandaigua Lake 50 miles long. The first hour was pitch dark, the first thirty miles, a piece of cake. By 35, I wished I was somewhere else, and by 46, I became convinced that my vital organs were shutting down. Still, I ran. I ran the bulk of the race, walking only up hills and stopping for a couple minutes at each of the eight aid stations. Mom, Dad, and Boyfriend met me at four of those; seeing their faces and their arms waving as I crested each hill was like a magic elixir to my fortitude.

There came a point in each marathon I have run when I seriously considered dropping out at the halfway mark or a little bit after. That never happened at Canandaigua. I never once feared that I would not finish or tried to convince myself to quit. Every climb (and there were many) just promised another gorgeous view. Every ache in my legs, my hips, my back just urged me on. Move faster, finish sooner, I told myself, and it worked. I crossed the finish line in 9 hours and 41 minutes—9th place out of 27 women, and 46th in a field of 100. 

Thanks to everyone who supported me in this crazy endeavor. It was painful and ugly and hard, but those nine hours (and change) were some of the best of my life. And runners, if you can run a marathon, you can run an ultra. Trust me. 

Photos, from left: mile 23, mile 38, finish line.

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To understand just what the inaugural Run LOViT ultramarathon race entailed when it took place on Feb. 22 near Hot Springs, you need to do a mental exercise. First, imagine a traditional marathon—all 26.2 paved miles. Now double that, add another 528 yards, and take it off-road, winding it through tight single-track trails, up and over rock-strewn mountains, and you’ll get something close to Arkansas’ first 100-kilometer race.

The extreme trail race was organized by Hot Springs locals Dustin and Rachel Speer, two veteran ultramarathoners who never planned on becoming long-distance runners, much less race directors. Rachel only joined the Women Can Run clinic near her home in Conway as a way to stay fit, but soon after decided to run a half marathon. Not wanting to be left out of that experience, Dustin joined her, and together they ran their first half marathons in 2006. It was a fortuitous decision for them both—they fell in love with the sport and never looked back.

Two years later, the couple founded Conway’s Soaring Wings half marathon as a way to give back to the running community. After moving to Hot Springs in 2012, they became enchanted with running on the nearby Lake Ouachita Vista Trail (LOViT), and decided it needed a race of its own.


(April 2014; Photos by Wesley Hitt)

For the rest of the story: http://arkansaslife.com/index.php/trail-blazers/

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