Monday, May 7, 2012

"THIS IS NOT A RACE. It is an experience." An update on my Miwok 43 Mile Experience

The 2012 Miwok 100K turned out to be an EPIC experience for all the runners who ran it this year, whether or not they finished it.  And 25 percent of the 354 runners that started did not finish. I was one of those 90 runners who did not finish. It'll take at least a few days for me to complete my full race report, but here is a short update.

The race course was "reconfigured" this year, due to permit problems, from what I remember hearing.  Regardless of the reason, it was a much tougher course than in previous years.  Dave Mackey won the race last year in 8:03.  He also won the race this year, but it took him an extra 1:11 to finish.  For the back of the pack, runners could expect to be 1.5-2 hours slower on the new course.

It was a beautiful day, filled will good people and gorgeous views. I called it quits after 43 miles, with some severe cramping and nausea. My arms were crusted with salt and I was probably a little dehydrated.  I was ahead of the trail sweeper, but my legs had not been cooperating for the last 5 miles. I was no longer having fun, and I knew I had no chance making the cutoffs anyway with the state of my cramping legs. 

It is said that you learn more from a loss than you do from a win.  This was a loss. And it stings a bit.  But I'll be back.  And I'll be stronger.  I may still fail to finish next time.  But I will be back. It's okay to fail.  Its okay to fall down.  But you have to get back up.  You have to believe in yourself.


  1. John, great ending comments - summarized perfectly. From someone that's done Miwok 4x now the revised course took huge bounds in difficulty. Celebrate the completion of 43 miles; on Saturday that in itself was grand.

  2. Like the attitude! Keep your head up, and keep running.

  3. I was the morning sweep at Miwok and wasn't surprised to see runners dropping out before the first 26.2-mile section...the initial 1800-ft climb over 2 miles and the off camber, lumpy single track leading to and from Willow Camp/Bolinas Ridge were brutal. I train over in the Tennessee Valley/Rodeo Beach area and know how steep and tough those climbs are...I've never attempted those climbs 40 miles into a race so I commend you for making it as far as you did. And hats off to the runner that crossed the finish line 16 hours after the start of the race...yikes. Will you be running Quicksilver this Saturday?


  4. I put my name on the waiting list for Quicksilver. I'm not sure its the smartest thing I've ever done, but I'm hungry for redemption!