Let’s talk gear: what are your must-haves?
I ran “free” the last couple of miles each day, but I like to carry my nutrition. I found a women’s specific vest was my best bet – landing on the Ultimate Direction Ultra Vesta from the Jenny Collection. If you can believe it, I brought four pair of shoes with me. On day six, it rained for almost 20 miles, and I went through three pair of shoes. There’s no guarantee on weather, so I had to come with options for clothing. I think I experienced three seasons on day five. Socks: Run Light Elite (for earlier in the week), PhD Run Ultra Light (for when my feet swelled) and PhD Compression (for recovery). Tops: Women’s Merino 150 Tank and Seamless Long Sleeve. Pants: PhD Run Tight. Accessories: PhD HyFi Training Gloves and my staple Running4ThoseWhoCan’t trucker hat.
What about nutrition? How did you stay fueled throughout the week?
It took a while to figure out what my body could tolerate, but I landed on Tailwind for hydration. I alternated it with straight water every five miles. I can sustain on just Tailwind for a marathon, but when you’re doing days on end, you have to kick things up a notch. I supplemented with Honey Stinger chews and Natural Delights Coconut Date Rolls. For meals, I ate very clean… but on day five, the smell of French fries stuck with me for 14 miles. I couldn’t resist indulging once we got to Idaho Springs.
What was the most unexpected or surprising thing that happened during the run?
You can train your body to push through, but until you’re in the moment, you don’t know what to expect emotionally. I didn’t process what my run would mean to others, and it was extremely overwhelming to hear how much it was touching people’s lives. The run wasn’t just mine… it belonged to so many.
Would you do it again?
In a heartbeat. Now that I’ve done it, the journey doesn’t seem quite as daunting.
What advice would you give to someone looking to tackle a similar physical and mental challenge?
Dive into your “why” because you’ll lean on that throughout your journey. Sometimes running sucks. You’re tired. It’s hot, or it’s raining. Lace up anyway, and remember your “why.” That will prepare you for anything.