Monday, February 9, 2015

Burning River for Ben: Passion and Commitment

The Weekly Gathering of the CRUD
For Another Fun Run in the Mountains
 One of the things I love about training for an ultra be it a 24 hour mountain bike race, a 100 mile run, or any other ultra-endurance event is the training. Maybe I should call it playing instead of training, because that is really what it is to me. I know this sounds weird but I love getting up in the morning and dealing with whatever weather happens to greet me. I love running/riding in the snow, cold, heat, sunrise, mornings, afternoons, I love it all. I love weather, which is why I didn’t move to Southern California when I had the opportunity. I think to really appreciate summer you’ve got to have winter and vice versa. I love running and riding alone as well as with friends who are just as passionate for being in nature and pushing themselves  as hard and far as they can go.

Matt's Definitely Loving It!
This year Jeff Mulder, Matt Larsen, and I have committed to running 100 miles on July 25 - in Ohio of all places. The comradery has been awesome and every time we run together the miles seem effortless. Tania Ellsworth Smith, another passionate ultra-runner, cancer survivor, and friend, wrote a very moving piece on commitment . Which is what inspired me to write this.

Jeff Mulder - Making the Commitment!
Turn-around point of 18 Mile Run
Max's Enthusiasm is always a Great Motivator
I think she hit it right on the nose. I also believe the moment you truly commit to something is the moment that all the hard work, the early mornings, and the innumerable challenges become fun instead of tedious. In 2009 I committed to competing and winning the Leadman competition. That was truly an amazing year. The commitment to accomplish that goal was so intense that it never seemed like work, just pure joy. To this day I can look back at that year and feel that incredible sense of true commitment to a goal and the joy that went with it. It’s a great feeling! This year I’m  having those same feelings about the Burning River 100. 

Matt and Jeff Heading Home from Another Long Run
Another aspect that makes the Burning River even more exciting is our commitment to raising money to help the kids and families being served by the Akron Children’s Hospital Cancer Treatment Center.  We are committed to helping these kids and if we can do it by raising money and awareness through something we love then I feel this is truly a win-win opportunity. We’ve committed to raising $10,000 by race day in July. It’s a huge commitment, but so is running 100 miles and we're committed to both. So if  you’d like to join our cause there are a lot of kids that will truly benefit. Just $20 more and we’ll have already surpassed our first milestone of $500! Helping out is easy just press this link. And remember every bit no matter how little adds up. Thank you so much!