Ultra Runners

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50K or 50M? (Read 582 times)

    Hi all,

     

    I've been lurking around here for a while last year. This year, I plan to run my first ultra and I am super excited.  Right now I'm deciding between this 50 miler:

     

    http://www.uberendurancesports.com/Dirtygerman.html

     

    And this 50K:

     

    http://www2.thenorthface.com/endurancechallenge/races/2011/ny/index.html

     

    I've narrowed it down to these two based on dates and location (I live in NJ). I really would like to do a 50 miler, but the Bear Mountain one seems too challenging in both elevation and terrain to be my first.  The Dirty German is relatively flat and not technical at all.  Does it makes sense to go for a 50 miler right away, or is it wiser for me to start with a 50K? What was your first ultra?

     

    Thanks!

    2014 Goal: Run faster than 3:37:07 in the NYC Marathon

    DoppleBock


      What are you looking for?

       

      Just the name alone I would do the Dirty German + The Northface is a big organization - putting on a big race - More likely a circus.

      http://a-big-horse.blogspot.com/ 

      2013 Goals ~ Mar < 3:00, 5M < 29, 10k < 35  

       

      DoppleBock


        When I do a 50k or 50M I am looking for #1) a fun run #2)  Nice technical trails #3)  Hilly trails #4) Beauty of trails #5) Low key relaxed event #6) lower cost - Not necissarly in that order.

         

        I went from Marathon to 50M.

        http://a-big-horse.blogspot.com/ 

        2013 Goals ~ Mar < 3:00, 5M < 29, 10k < 35  

         

          Welcome!

           

          I started with a 50k, but there is nothing wrong with a 50M fine for getting into ultras.

           

           

          Of the 2 you listed, by far I would prefer the Dirty German.  Looks like a really fun event.

           

          I agree with DB about the circus at TNF.  With lots of different races and relays it's going to be a little crowded on the trails.  If that's what you're looking for then cool, but personally I prefer a little solitude during a long race.

            Thanks for the responses! I guess part of my problem is I don't know exactly what I'm looking for.  I've never ran a trail race, an ultra, or anything with serious elevation change. At this point, I'm probably leaning more toward the Dirty German, although there is a part of me that is afraid to tackle the 50 mile distance. Plus there is the issue of convincing my wife I'm going to be OK.  

             

            The other issue is with hilly ultras, there are obvious places to walk when it's steep, but with a relatively flat 50 miler, I don't imagine I'll be able to run the whole way.  Should I factor in some walking from the get go? My goal at this point would be just to finish, but I would rather run as much as I can.

            2014 Goal: Run faster than 3:37:07 in the NYC Marathon

            xor


              FWIW, I ran North Face Madison this year.  Kind of expecting the worst.

               

              Yes, Dean was there.  Yes, when they asked "who is running their first ultra??", the majority of hands were raised.

               

              That said, it was a damn cool event that turned out to be nothing like a circus.  Interesting course. Well marked. Good aid stations.  Not too crowded.  Start/finish not a zoo.  And while I generally send most of my race shirts to goodwill, I like my NF shirt a lot.  It is, as you might guess, a shirt made by North Face. No ads.  And the race logo is a verrrry subtle circle on the shoulder.  All in all, it is basically a high quality running shirt that I would consider purchasing.

               

              Thumbs up. I'd run it again.  (that said... NF had a very rocky relationship with various entities when they held a race in the Seattle area. Which is why they don't anymore.)

               

              You should know that in the North Face lineup, the NY race is considered to be quite challenging (way harder than DC and Madison)

               

                Thanks for the responses! I guess part of my problem is I don't know exactly what I'm looking for.  I've never ran a trail race, an ultra, or anything with serious elevation change. At this point, I'm probably leaning more toward the Dirty German, although there is a part of me that is afraid to tackle the 50 mile distance. Plus there is the issue of convincing my wife I'm going to be OK.  

                 

                The other issue is with hilly ultras, there are obvious places to walk when it's steep, but with a relatively flat 50 miler, I don't imagine I'll be able to run the whole way.  Should I factor in some walking from the get go? My goal at this point would be just to finish, but I would rather run as much as I can.

                 

                It looks like there was a 50k distance also at your dirty german.

                 

                My wife made me take out life insurance before I ran my first ultra.  (for real)

                 

                In an ultra, no-one cares if you walk when it's flat.  Plus with trails, there are usually some walky parts due to the roots/rocks, etc.

                  FWIW, I ran North Face Madison this year.  Kind of expecting the worst.

                   

                  Yes, Dean was there.  Yes, when they asked "who is running their first ultra??", the majority of hands were raised.

                   

                  That said, it was a damn cool event that turned out to be nothing like a circus.  Interesting course. Well marked. Good aid stations.  Not too crowded.  Start/finish not a zoo.  And while I generally send most of my race shirts to goodwill, I like my NF shirt a lot.  It is, as you might guess, a shirt made by North Face. No ads.  And the race logo is a verrrry subtle circle on the shoulder.  All in all, it is basically a high quality running shirt that I would consider purchasing.

                   

                  Thumbs up. I'd run it again.  (that said... NF had a very rocky relationship with various entities when they held a race in the Seattle area. Which is why they don't anymore.)

                   

                  You should know that in the North Face lineup, the NY race is considered to be quite challenging (way harder than DC and Madison)

                   

                  Thanks for sharing.  I remembered reading a race report from someone that ran the one in Georgia and that it was all about DK signing autographs.  I just reread it and he actually did recommend the race, although he called the atmosphere similar to a carnival but without rides.

                    Hey all. I did end up running the Dirty German 50 Miles last weekend as my first ultra and it was pretty much one of the best experiences of my life.  Thanks folks for all the info I got from this forum! Here is the race report:

                     

                    http://russianrunner.blogspot.com/2012/05/dirty-german-50-miles.html

                    2014 Goal: Run faster than 3:37:07 in the NYC Marathon

                    DoppleBock


                      Nice report ~ I have never gotten lost - You had a really nice attitude about it.

                       

                      It is a whole different culture and feel of race for ultras ~ I do not think a 50 miler as harder than a marathon ~ just different.  Your mentality seems well suited for ultras ... marathon runners are a bit high strung (Usually)

                      http://a-big-horse.blogspot.com/ 

                      2013 Goals ~ Mar < 3:00, 5M < 29, 10k < 35  

                       


                      On On

                        I must have missed this when it went through the first time (in January).

                         

                        I am glad you had fun at the Dirty German, but did you check out any ultras in NJ?  You mentioned one in PA and one in NY but you live in NJ.

                         

                        I know for a fact there are around 12-15 ultras in NJ (my wife and I put on about 95% of them) and they are all fun.  Let me know if you want to do another 50M, 100K, try a nice 50K or even try your hand at a timed event.

                         

                        Check out www.njtrailseries.com for more info on over a dozen ultras.


                        A Sweetheart

                          Let me know if you want to do another 50M, 100K, try a nice 50K or even try your hand at a timed event.

                           

                          Check out www.njtrailseries.com for more info on over a dozen ultras.

                           

                          What?  A 100k?  Put on by a fellow RA'er?  I'm in.

                           

                          Looks like I will be in NJ on March 16.  Who wants to join me?

                          I want to do it because I want to do it.  -Amelia Earhart

                            DoppleBock, thanks. I was pretty freaked out about getting lost at first, but after speaking with the race director, he was really cool about it and it all worked out. You are definitely right about it being different rather than harder than a marathon.  There was a thread on here about a 5K causing more nerves than an ultra, and I can see that.

                             

                            Hasher Rick, I have checked out the NJ Trail Series and I'm definitely looking into running an event.  My choice this year, was mostly based on timing rather than anything else.  After looking at the site again, I'm thinking that 100K ultra in March may work.

                             

                            WrigleyGirl, I was actually just thinking about that 100K before I even saw your response to this thread.  I want to try a farther distance, and a flatter course like this sounds perfect, and 100M still sounds like too big of a jump.

                            2014 Goal: Run faster than 3:37:07 in the NYC Marathon


                            A Sweetheart

                               

                              WrigleyGirl, I was actually just thinking about that 100K before I even saw your response to this thread.  I want to try a farther distance, and a flatter course like this sounds perfect, and 100M still sounds like too big of a jump.

                               

                              100 miles is a different beast than all the other distances.  Night and day.  Frankly, I think 100k is a million times more enjoyable than a 100 miler.  YMMV.  I think 50 milers have a very predictable feel to them.  100k's are just different.  I like them.  

                               

                              Congrats on Dirty German.  Was it a well organized race?  I would like to go out there and do one of their races.  It looks like they have a nice line-up.  I would really like to go out there when I can be competitive.  I have never wanted an age group award so bad.  (I know I have posted their German weather house awards here before, but here it goes again.)

                               

                              weather house

                              I want to do it because I want to do it.  -Amelia Earhart

                                100 miles is a different beast than all the other distances.  Night and day.  Frankly, I think 100k is a million times more enjoyable than a 100 miler.  YMMV.  I think 50 milers have a very predictable feel to them.  100k's are just different.  I like them.  

                                 

                                Congrats on Dirty German.  Was it a well organized race?  I would like to go out there and do one of their races.  It looks like they have a nice line-up.  I would really like to go out there when I can be competitive.  I have never wanted an age group award so bad.  (I know I have posted their German weather house awards here before, but here it goes again.)

                                 

                                weather house

                                 

                                I keep reading about how a 100 miler is in it's own category just like you said, which makes me all the more scared of it.  It's definitely not something I'm ready for, but I've just embarked on my ultra career, so no rush.

                                 

                                I thought the race was very well organized.  It seems like me getting lost was most likely a fluke, and the race director made up for it with some smart thinking, and I was able to cover the entire distance. Other than that part, I liked the course, and I thought the aid stations were stocked well and everyone was very helpful and friendly.  Keep in mind though that this was my first ultra so I have nothing to compare it to.  I was kind of in a state of bliss so I may also be remembering the whole thing with rose-tinted glasses Smile

                                 

                                When I saw these age group awards on the website, I really, really wanted to win one but I thought I had no chance based on the times I would need to run when looking at the 2011 results.  I ended up getting super lucky with who showed up in the 30 - 39 year range ahead of me and ended up with the exact award that is in the photo! Such a cool bonus to an already awesome day!

                                2014 Goal: Run faster than 3:37:07 in the NYC Marathon

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