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Eugene Smith is a beast
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ben wood

Locale: flatlands of MO
Eugene Smith is a beast on 10/25/2011 07:48:33 MDT Print View

Eugene probably wouldn't brag on himself about this, so I will.

Eugene ran the Deadman Peaks Ultra last weekend, a 50 miler (i think 54 in reality) across beautiful NM.
Out of 62 entrants only 33 finished and eugene was one of them.

good job buddy!

Brendan S
(brendans) - MLife

Locale: Fruita CO
Re: Eugene Smith is a beast on 10/25/2011 08:04:40 MDT Print View

Great job man!

adam spates
(adamspates) - F

Locale: southeast
wow! on 10/25/2011 08:09:12 MDT Print View

Impressive ES! Congrats! Hope the recovery is going well! :O)

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Eugene Smith is a beast on 10/25/2011 08:45:13 MDT Print View

Desert Beast.

Thom Darrah
(thomdarrah) - MLife

Locale: Southern Oregon
Eugene Smith is a Beast on 10/25/2011 09:41:52 MDT Print View

Hk Newman
(hknewman) - MLife

Locale: Western US
Re: Eugene Smith is a Beast on 10/25/2011 10:05:27 MDT Print View

Congrats are in order. That area is a beautiful place for a hike ... or trailrun.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
beast = Eugene on 10/25/2011 12:59:40 MDT Print View

way to go Eugene!

encouraging to see some folks in my age group finishing :)

Joe Clement
(skinewmexico) - MLife

Locale: Southwest
Eugene Smith is a beast on 10/25/2011 14:28:43 MDT Print View

Gotta be tough to live in that Southern NM area!

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Thanks all. on 10/26/2011 07:39:47 MDT Print View

Right on Ben, thanks.

I'm still learning how to run these things, this year's race "strategy" backfired on me big time, my fitness was much better than last year but I went out WAYYYYY to fast in the first 18 miles of the race heading into the first aid station in 3rd position and succumbed to cramps off and on for the remainder of the run that I just couldn't shake. Running/powerhiking through cramps was how I made it back to the finish at the end of the day, but with a smile of course! Anyone looking to run ultra distances, embrace the long runs in your weekly training, not just big mileage weeks with frequent 'short' runs, it's all about getting in 25+ mile runs often and maybe even back to back at some point in the final weeks, not just an occasional long run like in marathon training. Anyways....

I learned my lesson....again.

The CDT, at least in that section, is a tough route, sure makes me respect thru hikers even more who choose that trail.

@ Mike,

I seriously think ultrarunning is a sport that favors maturity, many of the top finishers were mature runners. My hero, NM resident Bobby Keogh is in his mid 60's and he runs all the ultras down here. His legs are like trunks and he can just keep going with a smile.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
lessons learned on 10/26/2011 08:23:07 MDT Print View

fighting through cramps for 30+ miles sounds extremely grueling! probably the reason some of the folks who had dropped out I'd guess

good to know, I'm going to try and pick up my mileage- it would be extremely satisfying to finish a race of that magnitude

here's one you might consider if you're ever up for a visit to the Big Sky state :) it's shorter, but the elevation gains/losses are incredible (~ 17,000')

Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: Thanks all. on 10/26/2011 13:24:18 MDT Print View

Great job Eugene.

yeah I know all about going out too fast, not a good idea but hard to avoid, just takes experience.

Re cramps
how regular were you with electrolytes and water intake ?
sometimes the going out too fast can help bring cramps on also.
hamstrings? calfs?

and that 25 miler every other week, or every week for those in great shape, is key.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
fueling on 10/26/2011 17:26:41 MDT Print View


I stuck to a strict 1 capsule of Endurolyte every hour and was ingesting about 150-200 calories an hour in between the 4 aid stations. What I think brought on the cramps ( left quad and hamstrings) was that I didn't start taking in any supplementation until the mile 9 aid because it was so chilly and I was feeling good early on. Was it possible I was just behind the whole time and too little too late?

Agreed on the 25+ mile runs, I had several 70+ mile weeks, a few 20+ mile runs, and one 30 mile run 3 weeks out. It wasn't enough I don't think, at least for me to do well, for some that would be plenty.... im not a freak of nature. :-)

George Matthews
(gmatthews) - MLife
Re: fueling on 10/26/2011 18:03:17 MDT Print View

Congrats! I want to be you if I ever get a chance to grow up again.

Brad Fisher

Locale: NC/TN/VA Mountains
Re: Thanks all. on 10/26/2011 19:17:23 MDT Print View

I've only done regular marathons and can't imagine 50+ miles. Great job.

When using endurolytes I usually take one every 20 minutes throughout the race. In addition, I take 3 about a hour before the race. Once you get behind you really can't make up for the loss.

Your calories sound about right. Your body can't really utilize over 180-240 per hour (depending on body weight).

After two hours you need to consider protein. Otherwise your body starts working on muscle mass.

Hammer handbook is a great resource for understanding how the body works during endurance sports.

What a fantastic job and it's amazing you were able to fight through the issues. I think the "beast" title fits you well.


Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: fueling on 10/26/2011 20:02:23 MDT Print View

if it was dry and cold you may have gotten dehydrated without realizing it.
so maybe you did not take in enough fluids from the start because you were not thirsty enough to make you drink.
since electrolyte intake is often gaged by fluid intake, you may have not taken in enough electrolytes as a consequence.
Endurolytes deliberately have less sodium and potassium than other salt pills like S-caps. This is so theoretically you can manage your intake more precisely. but you need to know that if you really need electrolytes, taking 2 endurolytes at a time may help a bit more.

I would say your nutrition intake for the length of time you were running was not enough if it was only 150-200 calories per hour. did you also take food at the A/S?
you can get by on that calorie level for a marathon or maybe even a 6-7 hour 50k, but for longer runs you need more food.
I try and take 300 calories per hour for 50 milers and even more for 100 milers.
Tim Twietmeyer (25 time Western States finisher, 5 time winner) claimed to take in 300-400 calories per hour during his WS races.

I think 70 mile weeks is plenty for a 50 miler if it is quality mileage.
Some elite runners don't run much more than that.

there is a fine line between too little and to many electrolytes.
too many can cause its own problems.

Edited by asandh on 10/26/2011 20:08:29 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
ultra insight on 10/26/2011 20:02:27 MDT Print View


Good insight, thank you. I may have just fallen into a deficit and wasn't able to recover, despite my attempts to come back. One thing I know is that I sweat heavily, doesn't matter if it's an easy effort recovery run or an extended run in the heat, I'm usually left with dried salt deposit on my hat or clothing. Do certain individuals require more electrolyte supplementation than others? Or can we typically only process a certain amount within an hour? Sorry for all the questions.

My father, also an endurance nut, has been telling me to grab the Hammer handbook for over a year now, he swears by it and it transformed how he's felt pre/during/post race for years now. I'll take his and your advice and read it over!

I used, only for the second time (bad race idea), Perpetuem Solids but I couldn't stand the chalky texture. I think I ended up getting half the chews stuck in my teeth. I'm sticking to Heed and Perpetuem powder in the future, which has worked in the past.

Art ...
(asandh) - F
Re: Re: fueling on 10/26/2011 20:18:05 MDT Print View

I don't know what your running system is.
I run with two 21 oz bottles (one in each hand).
one bottle is pure water.
other bottle has water plus 600 calories of Perpetuem (about 5 scoops, you could make it 800 calories if you wanted a thicker mix).
thats good for 2-2.5 hours, maybe 3-4 if I eat off the A/S tables.
I them refill them using baggies I carry with me or pick up at drop stations.
works great.
one swig every 15 minutes from the Perpetuem bottle is about 70 calories.
goes down easy.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Fueling and Training on 10/26/2011 20:32:45 MDT Print View

That sounds like a good fueling system Art.

Edited by xnomanx on 10/26/2011 21:17:09 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
fueling on 10/26/2011 21:12:12 MDT Print View


You described my long run system almost to a T (used in my training). Using a Perpetuem multi hour mixture in one bottle (21oz.) and plain water in the second bottle (26oz.) My mistake, amongst many, was that I switched up what I do in training on race day. I decided to use Perpetuem Solids to minimize the fuss factor with the powder form and cut down on bulk in my waist pack, what ended up happening was that I didn't eat the Solids (cause they're nasty) with any consistency and realized (too late!) that 3 whole chews only equaled out to about 100 calories (I only packed one tube for each 27 mile leg of the race). The powder is the way to go. I filled up with HEED at every station in one bottle, but it didn't seem to help with cramping issues.

Aid station food was good, helped with the hunger issues and satiation, but was your typical ultra fare.

Have you tried the pancake batter consistency with Perpetuem in a gel flask? How long is this good for?

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: fueling on 10/26/2011 21:17:39 MDT Print View

Oh, and another thought on training: while he doesn't really run ultras (he's a ~2:35 marathoner and general road racing stud- look at his PRs), Jeff at The Logic of Long Distance (perhaps my favorite running blog), is the real deal, walking that fine line of elite amateurism. He just wrote an interesting piece on training, basically on shifting away from sheer volume (100MPW) and logging more quality. While the distances are different, I think much of the logic still applies. This post reminds me a little of what you're saying you suspect some of your troubles were: pouring on the weekly miles while perhaps neglecting more race-specific workouts- in your case, the LONG runs, and plenty of them.

Makes me wonder about the many 100 mile racers I've met/read about that are "only" logging 50-60 MPW (whereas you'd think their MPW would have to be more in the 100 range), but still running ultras comfortably...because they're getting in those 25-40+ mile runs on a very regular basis as opposed to weeks full of lots of 8s and 10s and doubles.