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TransRockies Race Partner Sought
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Sarah Syed
(trailgal) - F
TransRockies Race Partner Sought on 08/21/2007 11:43:53 MDT Print View

I am looking for a partner for the Inaugural TransRockies race, a multi-day staged trail race in the Colorado Rockies.

September 16-21st, 2007. Six days. 125 miles. Beaver Creek to Aspen, CO

Additional details on the race at:

I would love to make a new friend near my pace to compete with. Solo entrants are not permitted; the event is limited to 150 teams.

2-3 days are ultra distance; all 6 days have significant elevation.

$1250 Registration fee includes all support, including transport of gear, luggage, tent rental and set-up, breakfast and evening meal at each stage, energy bars, energy drinks, fruit, during stages, access to showers, etc. Yes, the entry fee is high, but for me it’s worth it to not have to coordinate logistics/crew on my own. All you have to carry is a small pack with rain gear, warm top, emergency kit, route book, and a little food/water for between control points.

Ideal Race Partner:
Male or female, doesn't matter.
Strong running base (or solid running + alternate sport base)
As its rather late in the game, my ideal partner is presently sustaining a minimum 35+ miles/week running + cross-training (or higher running mileage with less cross training)

Pace: 9-10 min/mile on hilly trails; 7.5-8.5 min/mile on gentle terrain. The race requires that you stay within two minutes of your teammate at all times, so finding a partner similar to my pace is essential. I recently finished my first 10K road race in 47:32 (it was far from an “all out” effort).

Update: I recently discovered that at 10,000 ft, my pace is somewhat slower than those posted above (imagine that!). With 6 days straight of long mileage running up and down mountains, I will be averaging more like 10-15 min/miles on the runnable miles, and slower when I need to power hike steep stretches. I don't expect to be very competitive at TransRockies, but I want to run the strongest race possible given my ability. I want to be comfortable and happy throughout this ultimate running vacation.

Dedication: You should serious about the TransRockies Race, and on track to being the fittest you can possibly be by September. My training currently consumes ~15-20 hours/week. I run ~6-12 hrs/week, and fill the remaining hours with a mix of cycling, weights, and yoga.

Age: within 10-15 years of me preferred (I'm 27). I don't mean to be ageist, but I just think we'll get along better if you're between the admittedly arbitrary ages of 12 and 42 ; )

A little more about me:
27, female, trail runner, road cyclist, backpacker, urban planner, graduate student. I live in Berkeley, CA (yes, sea level. I am arriving in Colorado 8 days before the race to acclimate at 9,000 feet before the race).

I've been running for 1.5 yrs, so I'm still in that puppy love stage. I typically run one trail race/month. I am on a women's running team (an ambassador team for LUNA bar). 1/2 marathon distance is my favorite so far. I like to challenge myself pace-wise. I am a little obsessive about injury prevention, so I take care not to overdo it. I started running to cross-train for cycling, but running has become my primary sport as of late. I have never run farther than 20 miles, but I am deep into training (lots of back-to-back long runs to simulate the race), and am very excited about TransRockies. I was inspired to register for this event on a tramping holiday in New Zealand. Most days on the trail I found myself thinking "this would be so much more fun if I was running!"

I look forward to hearing from you soon. Please tell me a little bit about you, your running experience, and running goals. Please be in touch soon, the race is so close.


Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: TransRockies Race Partner Sought on 08/21/2007 14:37:16 MDT Print View

Hey Sarah
I was planning on doing the Tahoe Rim Trail at the time of the race but not sure it's going to happen.

I have a few question for you.
I'm not sure if you're alright with putting your email address attached to your post, because you are not a member and there is no way to get in touch with you.

At your training level, how sure are you that you will be able to finish???

Is the price listed per team or per teammate?
Are you willing to pay for the teammates place since you have not found anyone yet?

I would be interested if the questions above were answered with a yes or no problem.

I have been running 60 mile weeks for the past 8 months and have run over 100 miles in a 24 hour race with no problems what so ever an have been running ultra distance for 6 years now.
I'm fine with the pace.
You will find it is a whole lot harder than you think it is going to be. I will also help you out as much as possible to be able to finish. I competed and finished Primal Quest last year and am used to working as a team and know what it take to get to the finish, (despite recent problems on the JMT).
I am not sure if you are able to email me with out being a member but like I said, I am interested.

The main thing at this time is if the people who are supposed to do the Tahoe Rim Trail do not figure out when or if they will go soon, I will be good to do this. My age is 34 and from Rio Vista, (45 minutes from you).
Fell free to check out my other posts. I am some-what of a nut, (insane) at this site and in general.

Edited by awsorensen on 08/21/2007 14:41:28 MDT.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Re: TransRockies Race Partner Sought on 08/22/2007 12:04:48 MDT Print View

Hey Sarah
I thought I might be able to go, but not any more.
If you need any help or advice to get ready let me know.
I run up on Diablo all the time.

Sarah Syed
(trailgal) - F
TransRockies Follow Up on 08/27/2007 15:15:32 MDT Print View

hi Aaron,

Thanks for writing! I had a brief glimmer of hope followed by sadness when I read your second reply, but perhaps I can persuade you to rethink your plans.

Your questions:

1. At your training level, how sure are you that you will be able to finish???

I am confident that I am sufficiently trained to finish. I have been very dedicated in my training and am lean and fit. I did 55 miles this weekend to simulate the race, and feel strong and ready. My weaknesses are that I do not have the solid running base that years of running experience would afford, nor experience with running at 12,000 ft.

2. Is the price listed per team or per teammate?

The race reg fee is $1250 per person. $2500/team.

3. Are you willing to pay for the teammates place since you have not found anyone yet?

YES. If finances are an obstacle, I will cheerfully pay the full registration fee for the right race partner.

4. I agree with your comment that it will be more challenging than I think it will be. I've had some nagging thoughts about my projected race pace, which was not based on much research. I think my idea that I’d average 10-15 min/miles is quite ambitious, considering I'll be at up to 12,000 ft (even with 8 days acclimation, I'm sure I'll feel 12K!). I also read a quote that stuck in my mind by Barrett Tillman, "You won't rise to the occasion, you'll default to your level of training." I don’t think he was talking about endurance running, but he could have been.

I spent some time yesterday studying trends in my race results, and comparing present running buddies’ performance at races at high elevation. Based on this, I reestimated my pace for TransRockies at 11:00 -16:00 min/mile.

With this being a 5 day event, I need to respect that, and come up with a race strategy for each day. I could very well have a significantly different pace on Day 4 compared to Day 1, and I have not thought enough about this.

Then I scratched my head some more and thought perhaps I should add even more time to my estimated pace given the extra elevation (while I did look at TRT results, it is significantly lower). Could it be that I will be delighted to average 13-18 min/miles, especially by day 4 or 5? I do not know what percent of the course is at what elevation, so I am just guessing.

Unfortunately race management has not released daily mileage nor elevation profile data for the race course yet which would help me fine-tune my race strategy and pace estimates. My limited experiences with altitude have been promising, and the 8 days to acclimate will be far more than I've ever had. The climbing isn't more difficult (18,000 feet over 5 days), than my training runs/races have been.

You sound like a strong runner who would be an excellent partner for this race. That’s great that you live so near me also, we could do a trial run soon. You can reach me via email at: ssyed *at*

I hope to hear from you soon.


PS sorry for the delay in my reply! I will be much quicker hereon.

Sarah Syed
(trailgal) - F
an addendum on 08/27/2007 15:34:57 MDT Print View

Ok, so I just spent a few short minutes reading a little more about Aaron, as you suggested, and learned that you:

run at 15% grade for 3 hrs,
make your own gear to save weight,
are quite the fast-packing star

I'm humbled that you would consider doing TransRockies with me!

I forgot to mention in my post that the Race was officially shortened last week to 5 days/118 miles due to trail access/unprecedented bear activity issues. It will be 9/16-9/20.

Also, I am running the race as a personal fundraiser for the Breast Cancer Fund, which you can read about here:


Sarah Syed
(trailgal) - F
Partner Found on 09/05/2007 16:09:52 MDT Print View

I found a partner for my race. Thanks.